Tuesday, March 10, 2009

House Arrest and Lemon Cake

My 8-year old is flopped over on the couch for the third day straight -- rosey-cheeked with a fever, a pile of crumpled tissues (yes..some used) strewn across her belly, remote control clutched in her steamy little hand....'feeling poorly', as my Grandmother used to say. Zack & Cody, Hannah Montana, and SpongeBob are keeping her company in a steady, tvo'ed stream and she's sipping Coke on ice through a bendy straw.....she feels crummy, but at least she's comfy!

Remember being sick as a kid? In my day (I'm probably dating myself), my mom would set me up on the couch with "Love, American Style" on the tube, and a tv tray with 7-up and buttered toast. Before she left for work, she'd drag the phone (along with it's tangly, 10 foot cord) from the kitchen to where I lay in the livingroom "just in case you need anything". What a bummer when my show was over and I had to get UP out of my cozy spot to change the channel -- or else suffer through Richard Dawson and The Family Feud. My little patient has it pretty good. *sigh*..... I do feel bad for her though. Being sick is a drag.

So with all this talk of fevers and illness, you probably think I'm about to chat about chicken noodle soup -- actually, that's not a bad idea -- but unfortunately, that's not on the menu today. Since I'm tethered here at home by my sniffly, 53-lb. house anchor, I thought I'd head in to the kitchen and see what kind of trouble I could stir up. Heh, heh......stir up. Sorry.

Remember the Lemon Chicken I made a few days ago? I had a big, beautiful bowlful of lemons leftover (what can I say, I always overbuy - it's a weakness of mine), so I decided to bake up a batch of this tangy Glazed Lemon Cake.

I love this cake because it's not too sweet, it makes two loaves, and it freezes beautifully. It's nice to keep one on hand for a last minute dessert, and it's perfect with a cup of hot tea! If you have Ina Garten's Barefoot Contessa PARTIES!, the recipe can be found on pp. 104-105. Otherwise, here you go....enjoy!

Source: Barefoot Contessa PARTIES!, by Ina Garten
Makes 2 8-inch loaves

2 sticks butter at room temperature
2 1/2 c. sugar
4 large eggs at room temperature
1/3 c. grated lemon zest (from 6-8 large lemons)
3 c. flour
1/2 t. baking powder
1/2 t. baking soda
1 t. kosher salt
3/4 c. freshly squeezed lemon juice
3/4 c. buttermilk at room temperature
1 t. vanilla

For the glaze:
2 c. confectioners' sugar, sifted
3 1/2 T. freshly squeezed lemon juice

Preheat the oven to 350. Grease two loaf pans and set aside.

Cream the butter and 2 c. sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment for about 5 minutes, or until light and fluffy. With the mixer on medium speed, add the eggs, one at a time, and the lemon zest.

Stir together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and the salt in a bowl. In another bowl, combine 1/4 c. lemon juice, the buttermilk, and vanilla. Add the flour and buttermilk mixtures alterately to the batter, beginning and ending with the flour. Divide the batter evenly between the two pans, smooth the tops, and bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until a toothpick comes out clean.

Combine 1/2 c. granulated sugar with 1/2 c. lemon juice in a small saucepan and cook over low heat until the sugar dissolves. ** see note *** When the cakes are done, let them cool for 10 minutes, then invert them onto a rack set over a tray, and spoon the lemon syrup over the cakes. Allow the cakes to cool completely.

For the glaze, combine the confectioners' sugar and lemon juice in a bowl, mixing with a wire whisk until smooth. Pour over the top of the cakes and allow the glaze to drizzle down the sides.

**note** I think this step is superfluous and I always skip it. I still love the cake, I just don't believe in making extra work for myself!

1 comment:

Penny said...

I remember those days of being sick, with Mom hovering with Seven up and saltine crackers. Hope your little one is feeling better. I've made that lemon cake and it could cure many maladies. I still associate seven up with being sick.

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