There are times when I long for a cold day, wrapped up in a warm blanket and reading a classic novel, with a steaming cup of hot cocoa as my companion. But then there are those other days when I crave for a lemon pound cake; the fresh, flavorful flavors tingling my taste buds.
Today was one of those days.
This cake is unbelievably soft. I have had my share of pound cakes, but never met one which is so dense yet so light, so subtle yet packed with lemon deliciousness. The trick is in the creaming of the butter and sugar; cream them for at least 3-4 minutes or until a very, very pale yellow (I suggest you use a hand or standing machine for this, as it would take a lot of arm workout!).
Give this cake a try; it is the perfect way to treat yourself on a hot, summer’s day. It is quite versatile too: use it in trifles, make it into lemon cake pops (their incredible moistness make the best cake pops), or anything you would do with a regular pound cake. It can be an indulgent breakfast, quick snack or a light dessert! J
Or, if you’re like me and don’t have the patience to wait any longer, just eat it as is, preferably with a glass of cold iced tea. That’s what I am going to do right now whilst you grab your kitchen tools and an apron and start baking this delightfulness; there is no reason to not, right? 😉
Slightly adapted from this recipe:
2 sticks unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 1/2 cups sugar
4 extra-large eggs, at room temperature
1/3 cup grated lemon zest (6 to 8 large lemons)
3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon kosher salt
3/4 cup plus 3 1/2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
3/4 cup buttermilk, at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
1. Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour two 8 1/2-by-4 1/4-by-2 1/2-inch loaf pans, and line the bottoms with parchment paper.
2. Cream butter and 2 cups sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment for about 5 minutes, or until light and fluffy. Mixing at medium speed, add eggs, one at a time, and lemon zest.
3. Sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a bowl. In another bowl, combine 1/4 cup lemon juice, buttermilk and vanilla. Add flour and buttermilk mixtures alternately to butter and sugar mixture, beginning and ending with flour. Divide batter evenly between pans, smooth tops, and bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour, until a cake tester comes out clean.
4. Combine 1/2 cup sugar with 1/2 cup lemon juice in a small saucepan, and cook over low heat until sugar dissolves.
5. When cakes are done, let them cool 10 minutes. Invert them onto a rack set over a tray, and spoon lemon syrup over cakes. Let cakes cool completely.
Yield: 2 loaf cakes (or one bundt)