Sunday, March 04, 2007

Lemon pound cake with a sweet shiny glaze...

We had a total of 11 new recipes this week - we went through the posts and commented that our favorites this week were the Sweet and Salty Peanut Chocolate Chunk Cookies, Orecchiette with Kale and Smoked Mozzarella and the King Cupcakes.

I wanted to bake something to thank a neighbor, but I had not had a chance to go to the market and re-supply the pantry. Looking around, I had some basic ingredients on hand and decided to keep it simple with this Lemon-Glazed Lemon Pound Cake. When making this pound cake, you want to be sure that your butter and eggs are at room temperature so they can each be thoroughly incorporated. You'll notice in the recipe that I included mixing times on both the butter and the eggs - it is important that you beat the softened butter and sugar for a good 5 minutes to get that sought-after fine crumb. Since there is just a smidge of baking powder, beating the eggs for at least a minute after adding each one will give the cake lift and help it rise.

I'm a little curious about the end result of this cake though; typically you will get a characteristic crack down the center on loaf cakes like this. While my cake rose nicely, tested done and had a rich deep golden color on the outside, it ended up with just a flat top and no crack. The original recipe calls for setting the loaf pan on a couple regular baking sheets to prevent the bottom of the cake from getting too brown - I did this, but I wonder if it regulated the temperature so much that the crack never got a chance to form? That's my guess, but who knows... We utilized the technique of rubbing fresh lemon zest into the sugar before beating it with the butter to give the cake a light lemon scent on the inside. You may notice that the top of the take is covered with tiny holes - I decided to drench the cake in a zesty glaze made by bringing fresh lemon juice and sugar to a boil. After it simmers for just a couple minutes to thicken, we thoroughly coated the sides and top with this mixture. Besides bringing another layer of lemon to seep down into the dense buttery cake, it also leaves a shiny sweet crust all over.

How do we know how it tastes? Well, since we were giving this away and I had to know how it was going to come out, I ended up stealing a couple tablespoons of the batter and baking a couple mini muffins in our convection toaster oven! These cooked so quick however, that the crust didn't get much color to it - but at least we got to sample it!


  1. Great post - and the photo of the mini-muffin is fabulous!