Monday, April 19, 2010

ATK's Lemon Bundt Cake

Many people ask me for recipes and dessert ideas. Most of the time, it's for something chocolate, but nearly just as often, it's for something lemony. True story! It seems that EVERYONE and his brother loves the bright refreshing taste of lemon. So, whenever I read a lemon recipe that looks simple and easy, I always give it a try. I originally saw this recipe on America's Test Kitchen and decided it would be the perfect dessert to bring to Easter Dinner. Well, needless to say, everyone LOVED it and I'm sure you will too. It has a wonderfully light burst of lemony flavor and it's very simple to throw together in a snap.
Hope you like it!

3 lemons , zest grated and saved, then juiced for 3 tablespoons juice
3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon table salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup buttermilk*
3 eggs , at room temperature
1 egg yolk , at room temperature
2 1/4 sticks (18 tablespoons) unsalted butter
2 cups sugar

Note from Joey:
*To make buttermilk - measure 1 cup milk into a small microwave safe bowl. Add 1 tablespoon of vinegar or fresh lemon juice. Microwave for 30-45 seconds. The milk will immediately curdle which is exactly what you want. If you don't have a microwave, just combine the milk and vinegar and let it sit for a while. As it comes to room temperature, it will eventually curdle. The microwave just speeds up that process.

Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position; heat oven to 350 degrees.
Spray 12-cup Bundt pan with nonstick baking spray with flour (alternatively, brush pan with mixture of 1 tablespoon flour and 1 tablespoon melted butter). Mince lemon zest to fine paste (you should have about 2 tablespoons). Combine zest and lemon juice in small bowl; set aside to soften, 10 to 15 minutes.
Whisk flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in large bowl. Combine lemon juice mixture, vanilla, and buttermilk in medium bowl. In small bowl, gently whisk eggs and yolk to combine. In standing mixer fitted with flat beater, cream butter and sugar at medium-high speed until pale and fluffy, about 3 minutes; scrape down sides of bowl with rubber spatula. Reduce to medium speed and add half of eggs, mixing until incorporated, about 15 seconds. Repeat with remaining eggs; scrape down bowl again. Reduce to low speed; add about one-third of flour mixture, followed by half of buttermilk mixture, mixing until just incorporated after each addition (about 5 seconds). Repeat using half of remaining flour mixture and all of remaining buttermilk mixture. Scrape bowl and add remaining flour mixture; mix at medium-low speed until batter is thoroughly combined, about 15 seconds. Remove bowl from mixer and fold batter once or twice with rubber spatula to incorporate any remaining flour. Scrape into prepared pan.
Bake until top is golden brown and wooden skewer or toothpick inserted into center comes out with no crumbs attached, 45 to 50 minutes. Meanwhile, make the glaze.

2 - 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon buttermilk
2 cups confectioners' sugar

While cake is baking, whisk 2 tablespoons lemon juice, buttermilk, and confectioners' sugar until smooth, adding more lemon juice gradually as needed until glaze is thick but still pourable (mixture should leave faint trail across bottom of mixing bowl when drizzled from whisk). Cool cake in pan on wire rack set over baking sheet for 10 minutes, then invert cake directly onto rack. Pour half of glaze over warm cake and let cool for 1 hour; pour remaining glaze evenly over top of cake and continue to cool to room temperature, at least 2 hours. Cut into slices and serve.

-The key to the success of this cake is the glaze. It's all about the double shot of lemon, first when it's warm, and then again after it cools. Don't skimp!
-It seems to me that this cake would work just as well with oranges instead of lemons. Don't you think? Maybe I'll give it a try sometime! When I do, though, I'll probably add a little freshly squeezed lemon juice, just to perk up the flavor of the orange juice.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Cake is awesome! Lemon flavor comes through!!