Thursday, March 29, 2012

Sour Cream & Meyer Lemon Pound Cake

One ingredient that I feel captures the beauty of spring is lemons. They're refreshing, cleansing and the bright, sunny color does nothing but make me smile. Even better is using lemons this time of year when baking. I recently came across a great deal on Meyer lemons. Unlike your typical lemon, the Meyer variety is much sweeter with notes of orange and lime. Using some of the Meyer lemons I had, I made this Sour Cream & Meyer Lemon Pound Cake to welcome spring. The tender crumb, pockets of lemony goodness and the sweet glaze makes this pound cake a great addition to a holiday Easter menu...

This cake is all about the lemons. You won't find any lemon extract involved. Instead, this recipe uses the true lemon essence from the peel and juice, which is more than enough for this cake. I used Meyer Lemons but you can use standard regular lemons in this recipe. Or if you want to do a twist, substitute the lemon with limes, tangerines, etc.

I've been having a lot of fun recently playing with different gluten free flours in various ratios. Doing so made me believe that baking is possible even when you're living gluten free. But if you're not gluten free, no worries. This recipe works in either case. The original recipe calls for cake flour which you can follow below. However for my gluten free friends, you can still make this decadent cake without gluten. I've included recipes for both versions.


Sour Cream & Meyer Lemon Pound Cake
recipe adapted from Epicurious

3 cups cake flour*
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
3 cups sugar
6 eggs, room temperature
1/4 cup fresh {Meyer}lemon juice
1 tablespoon grated {Meyer} lemon peel
1 cup sour cream

Glaze:
2 cups confectioners' sugar
3 to 4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

* For a gluten free version, combine:
140 grams (1 cup) brown rice flour
140 grams (1 cup) tapioca starch
140 grams (1 cup) sorghum flour
1 1/2 teaspoons xanthan gum


Preheat oven to 325°F. Grease 9x5 loaf pan. Dust pan with 1 tablepoon cake flour; tap out excess flour.
Sift flour, baking soda and salt into medium bowl, set aside.

Using electric mixer, beat butter in large bowl at medium speed until fluffy. Gradually add sugar and beat 5 minutes. Add eggs 1 at a time, beating just until combined after each addition. Beat in lemon juice and peel.

Using rubber spatula, mix in dry ingredients.

Mix in sour cream.

Transfer batter to prepared pan. Bake cake until tester inserted near center comes out clean, about 1 hour 30 minutes. Let cake cool in pan on rack 15 minutes.

Cut around cake in pan. Turn out cake. Carefully turn cake right side up on rack and cool completely. (Can be prepared 2 days ahead. Wrap in foil and let stand at room temperature.)

For the glaze, place confectioners' sugar in a medium bowl or liquid measuring cup; stir in lemon juice (glaze should be thick, yet pourable). Add more sugar or lemon juice, as necessary, to achieve desired consistency. Pour half of glaze over cooled cake and allow to set. Once set, pour the remaining glaze and allow to set before serving.