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Meyer Lemon Pound Cake

February 21st, 2011

As promised last week, I’m giving you the recipe for that Meyer Lemon Pound Cake I made for our Super Bowl party. I used Ina Garten‘s recipe, as she never lets me down. I love that her recipes always uses real ingredients: butter, cream, eggs, olive oil, fresh lemon zest, freshly squeezed juice and fresh vegetables. I always love leafing through her many cookbooks; The Barefoot Contessa Cookbook and Barefoot Contessa Back to Basics: Fabulous Flavor from Simple Ingredients are two of my favorites.

Traditionally pound cake was made with a pound of: butter, flour, eggs and sugar. Since leavening wasn’t used in a traditional pound cake all ingredients had to be mixed by hand until light and fluffy, this provided the texture of the cake. Of course now days we have mixers and baking soda and baking powder, so we don’t have to worry about spending an hour mixing all the ingredients until they’re light and fluffy.

This lemon juicer was my grandma’s, my mom’s mom. My mom saved this and gave this to me for Christmas this year. I was happy to pull it out and use it when making this cake. Of course these Meyer lemons are the ones I ordered from the Lemon Ladies Orchard.

This recipe can easily be halved, which I needed for our Super Bowl party because I only had 2 eggs lef. A lot of pound cake recipes use 5 eggs, which makes it difficult to halve the recipe. I baked it in one of my cast iron bread pans, which I’d highly recommend as it does a fabulous job of baking the cake and I didn’t have to use parchment because the cast iron is well seasoned.

MEYER LEMON POUND CAKE
adapted from Ina Garten’s Lemon Pound Cake recipe

For the cake:
2 sticks (8 oz) unsalted room temperature butter
2 cups sugar
4 extra-large room temperature eggs
1/3 cup grated Meyer lemon zest (6 to 8 large lemons)
3 cups all-purpose flour (I used freshly ground white wheat with some of the bran sifted out)
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 cup freshly squeezed Meyer lemon juice
3/4 cup room temperature buttermilk (you can sub a mix of half yogurt half whole milk)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the syrup:
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup freshly squeezed Meyer lemon juice

For the glaze:
2 cups sifter confectioners’ sugar
3 1/2 Tablespoons of freshly squeezed Meyer lemon juice

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 or use a bundt pan of a 9 x 13 pan.

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.

6. For glaze, combine confectioners’ sugar and remaining 3 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice in a bowl, mixing with a whisk until smooth. Pour over top of cakes, and allow glaze to drizzle down the sides.


The first time I baked this cake in 2 cast iron bread pans, I’ve also baked it in a bundt pan and a glass 9 x 13 pan. I use freshly ground white winter wheat for my loaves, I sifted out some of the bran. If you don’t sift out the bran you’ll have to add a little bit more flour to get the right texture of batter.

This cake is really delicious, perfect for pairing with coffee. It has the perfect lemon flavor since it’s layered into every part of the recipe, from the zest and lemon juice in the cake batter, to the lemon juice in the syrup and the glaze. If you love lemon, this is the cake for you! And I LOVE lemon, so this is probably my most favorite cake. I think it would be even better studded with some fresh blueberries or black raspberries, which I’m going to have to remember next time I bake one. Another thing I love about this recipe is that there’s no icing, I’m not an icing person, the glaze is just right (although I often skip it and just do the syrup when making it for us at home).

What’s your favorite flavor of cake? Are you an icing lover?

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This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.

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