Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Katie's Lemon Party Cake

I've decided this is our family's favorite cake. My sister in-law Katie first, oh so nicely, made it for my birthday party a couple of years ago. After half eaten at my birthday dinner, it sat on our kitchen table, under the plastic cake container for a few days, slowing being picked at and dug into by Nick & I every time we passed through the kitchen. Ever since that party, I've been awaiting an occasion to bake one up of my own -- so when Mother's Day rolled around I though, this cheerful, tart, and moist cake was the perfect gift to my Mom!

When I called Katie for the recipe she explained that the cake comes from the Silver Palate cookbook but their recipe is for a Chestnut Cake (or something like that?) -- basically using this recipe (sans lemon zest) as a traditional white cake and filling with Chestnut cream. Instead of doing that, she made the basic cake batter they called for and paired it with creamy lemon icing (the icing recipe was on the same page right above the Chestnut Cake recipe!) I think it turned out perfectly-it is the ultimate indulgent party cake!

Katie's Lemon Party Cake:2 1/2 cups flour
2 cups sugar
4 eggs
1 cup vegetable oil
1 cup white wine *secret ingredient!
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 tablespoons lemon zest
*Katie just called for zest in the frosting but I decided to add it to the cake as well
For the Cake - so easy!
Pre-heat your oven to 350, while it's heating up, grease and flour (taping excess flour out) two 9" cake pans.
With an electric mixer, beat the sugar & eggs together for 30 seconds on medium speed.
Add vegetable oil, wine, flour, salt, lemon zest, baking powder & vanilla - beat for 1 more minute.
Fill the two cake pans evenly and place on the center oven rack - bake for 30 minutes. This recipe would also make perfect little yellow cupcakes...got to try that.

After the cakes are baked - let the them cool on a baking rack. While they cool make the frosting.

Creamy Lemon Frosting:

1 pound confectioners sugar
1 stick butter (at room temp)
3 tablespoons lemon zest
1/2 cup lemon juice

While your dog sleeps on the floor, make the frosting by first creaming the sugar & butter together. Then mix in the lemon zest & juice.

When you're ready to frost the cake (meaning the cakes are completely cool...if they're not the frosting will melt off) check to see if your cakes are domed in the middle (probably are). You want perfectly flat cakes so they lay flat on each other. Take a serrated knife and trim off the domes of the cake to make flat (eat extra trimmings dipped in frosting...)

Put the bottom cake on your serving plate and top with 1/3 of the frosting. Lay on the next cake and frost! I wanted to make my cake extra fun so I filled a horse cookie cutter with yellow sprinkles (I know it just looks like an androgynous animal but it was the thought that counted! A heart cookie cutter would have been ideal!). I chose the yellow sprinkles because I love when cakes have decorative ques as to what the yummy inside flavor is!

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