Lemon Pound Cake with Candied Lemon Slices

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Last month, I hosted a baby shower for my friend Michelle.  One of my fav things we had was this lemon pound cake.  I combined two recipes to make the cake and then the topping.  Often I find my mind wandering during the day to trying to find another reason why I can make this again!  If you make it, definitely go the extra mile to add the syrup and lemon slices, yum!

Classic Pound Cake
New Best Recipes

16 tbsp unsalted butter, softened but cool
1 1/3 cup sugar
3 large eggs, plus 3 large egg yolks, at room temperature
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 tsp water
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 cups plain cake flour

1.  Adjust oven rack to the middle position and heat the oven to 325 degrees.  Grease a 9 by 5 inch loaf pan.  Fit a sheet of foil or parchment paper lengthwise in the bottom of the greased pan, pushing it inot the corners and up the sides.  Fit a second sheet crosswise in the pan in the same manner.

2.  Beat the butter in the bowl of a standing mixer at medium high speed until smooth and shiny, about 15 seconds.  With the machine still on, sprinkle the sugar in slowly, taking about 30 seconds.  Beat the mixture until light and fluffy, and almost white, 4-5 minutes, stopping the mixer once or twice to scrape down the sides of the bowl. 

3.  Stir together the eggs, yolks, vanilla, and water in a 2 cup liquid measuring cup.  With the mixer running at medium high speed, add the egg mixture to the butter and sugar in a slow, thin stream.  Finally, beat in the salt.

4.  Place 1/2 cup of flour in a sieve and sift it over the batter.  Fold in gently with a rubber spatula, scraping up from the bottom of the bowl, until the flour is incorporated.  Repeat twice more, adding flour in 1/2 cup increments.

5.  Scape the batter into prepared pan, smoothing the top with a spatula or wooden spoon.  Bake until a toothpick or thin skewer inserted into the crack running along the top comes out clean, 70-80 minutes.  Let the cake rest in the pan for 5 minutes, then invert onto a wire rack.  Place a second wire rack ont he cake bottom, then turn the cake top-side up.  Cool to room temperature, remove and discard the foil.

Add Citrus:  Follow the above recipe, adding any of the following along with the salt:  grated zest of 2 lemons, grated zest of 1 orange, or grated zest of 1 lemon and 1 orange.  You can replace the  water and vanilla extract with 1 tbsp orange or lemon blossom water.

Brush the Loaf with  Lemon Syrup (follows) and garnish with glaze and candied lemon slices!

Candied Lemon Slices:
1 cup sugar
2 lemons, sliced 1/8 in thick or thinner, seeds removed
1/3 to 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice (from about 2 lemons)

1. In a medium saucepan, combined sugar and 1 cup of water; bring to a boil, stiffing to dissolve sugar. Add lemons slices and simmer very gently over low heat, swirling pan occasionally until slices are opaque throughout 20-30 minutes (I would do 30-40 minutes). With a slotted spoon, transfer slices to a sheet of wax paper; set aside. Add juice to pan, stir and set aside. This makes the lemon syrup.

Lemon Glaze:
2 cups confectioners’ sugar
2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
 
1. In a small bowl whisk together powdered sugar and fresh lemon juice. If glaze is too thick add up to 2 more Tbsp of juice. Glaze should be pourable but thick.