Monday, March 7, 2011

Pink Lemonade Cake

I experimented with a new cake last night.  Pink Lemonade.  Sounds good, right?

It was good.

I think it started when my neighbor asked me at church if I had some lemon juice at home, I didn't have time to chat but assumed she meant to borrow.  I told her no but said that I had some lemon powder, without further explanation.  I figure she didn't know what that was or wanted something else, never heard from her later. You  just reconstitute it.  Anyway, lemon must have been in my brain so I decided to try this.  

We have been through this before, where I didn't really have all the ingredients but made due anyway.  (ahem- icecream) I was ok with the lemon powder, but I didn't have fresh zest.  I have dehydrated lemon rind though.  NEVER buy this, at least from SF herb.  It turned out the whole rind is just chopped up, yup, bitter part and all.  So when you use it, it mostly tastes bitter.   Anyway I made it, putting the dry powder in with the sugar, I don't know if that was the right way but that is what I did and just put in the water for when it called for lemon juice.

For the frosting I tried adding grenadine syrup, I wanted a berry-ish flavor.  I was at the bottom of the bottle, it needed more.  I added a pinch or two of the lemon powder too.  I liked it but it probably would be better with real berries. I adapted a frosting recipe from my niece.

The recipe only makes a small 9 in cake.  I divided the batter and made two short layers.  The recipe was adapted from one I have seen several places around the Internet. I don't know who truly originated it. It did  have a slight gooey feel, that may or may not have been from the lemon powder? The family really liked it, The kids and I had seconds my husband kept eating while at the same time saying, there is just something about it...maybe it's needs a stronger lemon?
As I was cleaning up later, I picked up the container of lemon powder to put away.  Light goes on.  It says Lime Powder.  Oops, both containers look exactly alike.

Lemon Cake

1 1/2 cups all purpose flour  (I took out a tablespoon and substituted a tablespoon of cornstarch)
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
Zest of 1 lemon
2 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1 cup sugar
3 large eggs
1/4 cup plus 2 T lemon juice
1/2 cup buttermilk

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees and prepare cake pan.  
Sift all dry ingredients together and set aside.
Combine zest and sugar and rub or mix together to infuse lemon into sugar. Add the butter and cream cheese to the sugar and beat until creamy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating after each egg. Add 1/3 of the flour mixture, beating on low speed until just incorporated. Add 1/2 of the buttermilk, once incorporated, add the next 1/3 of the flour mix, followed by remaining buttermilk, and remaining flour, beating each addition until just incorporated. Add lemon juice, beating until just incorporated on low speed.
Bake until edges pull slightly from side of pan.  (I didn't time it, I just always do it this way.  Cooking at the lower temp. also helps keep the sides high and the middle from doming.)


2 1/2 tablespoons flour
1/2 cup milk
1/2 teas. vanilla (this is where I substituted about a tablespoon of grenadine but it could use more)
1/2 cup Butter
1/2 cup Granulated Sugar


In a small saucepan, whisk the flour into the milk and heat, stirring constantly until it thickens. You want it to be really thick, like brownie batter thick.
Remove pan from heat stir in the vanilla and cover the mixture with plastic wrap or wax paper so no skin develops. Let the mixture cool completely to room temperature.
Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy and ALL the graininess is gone (this can take a while,... 5-10 minutes)
When Flour and milk mixture has cooled, stir vanilla into the mixture. Then add the mixture to the butter and sugar and beat until it is combined and resembles whipped cream. If it looks separated, keep beating, another 5-10 minutes.  (With the grenadine it is less stiff at the end)

1 comment:

Meaghan Luby said...

yum, looks pretty too! thanks for sharing :)

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