You would think that after doing cake for two days, I would have choosen to do the other option in our Gutsy Cook Club menu – the Lamb Kebabs right?
Unfortunately, having a bunch of kids running around the house zaps you of all type of energy that you need to have in order to get into a car and hunt down lamb. Also, when you have the refrigerator full of leftover party food, making some MORE food is not a good option.
I’m a sticker for throwing out unused food. If I’m making it, we are eating it. So, the Lamb Kebabs were put to bed, never to be heard again (until the summer when we fire up the grill outside – promise!).
So, I choose to do the Sticky Lemon Cake. Which was a hit even before it was made, especially to Tom, who loves all things lemon-y. You remember how ga-ga he went with the Lemon Meringue Cake or how he died with the Baby Lemon Cheesecakes and lets not forget the time consuming Lemon Canadian Crown cake, in his mind, if it involves squeezing a lemon or a lime, he is all over it. We can place this cake right up there in the ever growing lemon collection.
It’s not a difficult cake to make, your standard creaming of butter and sugar, with the lemon zest, then the addition of the eggs and yolk, followed with the dry ingredients and the yogurt.
Pretty straight up baking.
Except that once more I’m assured that the publisher who was in charge of this book must have awful copywriters. The recipe called to use an 8-inch baking pan - since the most popular 8-inch pan is 2-inches high you know you are in trouble when you finish your batter. Because, if you are any kind of baker, you realized that you have more batter than space in the baking pan to pour it all in. I still don’t know how my fellow Cook, Raymond did it. I decided to play it safe, and not have a spilled batter mess at the bottom of my oven and switched to the 8x3 inch cake pan. I was glad I did, the cake DID rise in the oven quite a bit and the 3-inch high pan was a good decision.
The other oh, oh “TYPO” moment came at the baking time. The book said the cake was done at the 30-minute mark. No dice folk, the cake was not even close – I did not even bother to open the oven door, I could see it was not done. So I added another 15 minutes of baking time. At the 45-minute mark it was golden on top, but the cake tester came out a bit wet, so I left it another 5 minutes. With a total of 50 minutes in the oven, the cake came out as it was suppose to.
You then pierce it all over and pour the lemon syrup and get it all nice and soaked up, then it just a matter of “protecting it” from greedy fingers wanting to cut into it, as it finished its cooling time.
Tom lasted 2 hours (only because he took the little man to the video store) before he took a knife to it and ate THREE pieces!
As you can image the cake was a hit. Its tart, not too sweet - thanks to the yogurt addition. The almond flour makes it a dense cake (and you all know how I feel about dense, heavy cakes) and the butter balances it out by giving it a creamy, almost cheesecake texture. The best description for this cake is a rustic cake, one that you will only find in a family cookbook – comfort food baking at its best.
Here is the recipe – with my corrections:
Sticky Lemon Cake
From the Kitchen Bible
- 2 lemons
- 12 tablespoons unsalted butter (1 ½ sticks)
- 1¼ cups sugar (3/4 for the cake, ½ for the syrup)
- 2 large eggs, plus one egg yolk
- 1⅓ cups almond flour (almond meal)
- ½ cup all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1⅓ cups plain regular yogurt
- Preheat the oven to 325°F (175°C). Butter an 8x3 inch cake pan, and line the bottom with a round of parchment paper.
- Grate the zest and squeeze the juice from the lemons; you should have 6 tablespoons juice. Cream together the butter and ¾ cup sugar, and the zest in a large bowl until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs, one at a time.
- Whisk the flours and the baking powder together to eliminate any lumps. Stir into the butter mixture, followed by the yogurt and 2 tablespoons of the lemon juice.
- Spread in the pan. Bake for 45 to 50 minutes, or until the center springs back when pressed or a cake tester comes out dry.
- Meanwhile, stir the remaining ½ cup sugar and 4 tablespoons lemon juice in a saucepan over low heat to dissolve the sugar. Cool.
- Transfer the cake to a wire rack. Pierce the cake all over with a skewer and drizzle the syrup on top. Cool for 30 minutes. Invert onto the rack, remove the pan, peel off the paper, and cool completely.
Notes: The cake does shrink quite a bit once you take out of the oven, so don’t panic!
Other Gutsy Cooks made both menus, check them out.