Every Chinese New Year for the last few years, we have been invited over to Ms Lor Siak Por's for lunch. Ms LSP always provides a lovely spread of food and this year was no exception
As has been the 'tradition' I bake a cake for her and her guests to eat. Except for the first year, when I managed to pipe on a Chinese character on the cake, the last 2 years have seen me trying to feature the Chinese Zodiac animal on the cake.
Trying is the operative word as my Zodiac Animals never seem to turn out well. Two years ago, I attempted a Rabbit Cake but the rabbit turned out looking more like a hamster or maybe a rat. Then, last year, I attempted a Dragon Cake but alas, said dragon turned out looking more like a fancy prawn.
This year, being the year of the snake, I attempted a Snake figure for the cake. Well, it kind of looks like a snake but perhaps a rather sad snake. As my little princess said, I should have just gone for a 'cartoonish' kind of snake in 2D rather than trying to be fancy. My son said that the snake made the otherwise lovely looking cake look scary....
He said I should have taken a picture of the cake first without the snake. I wish I had done that too.
Regardless of my failed attempts at the Zodiac Animals, the cakes seem to always win favour with both Ms Lor Siak Por as well as her guests. This year was no different and the Lemon Frosted Lemon Cake was a huge succes.
The recipe comes from
Joy of Baking website. I like the stuff there as most of the recipes I've tried always turn out well. This was no different and the cake was fairly easy to whip up as was the icing. This is the recipe as per the website.
Lemon Cake Recipe:
1 cup (230 grams) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup (200 grams) granulated white sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
4 large eggs, room temperature
Zest of 1 large lemon (outer yellow skin of lemon)
2 cups (260 grams) all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup (60 ml) fresh lemon juice
1 cup (115 grams) confectioners' (powdered or icing) sugar, sifted
2 - 4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
Lemon Cake: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C) and place oven rack in the center of the oven. Butter, or spray with a non stick cooking spray, a 9 inch (23 cm) spring form pan and then line the bottom of the pan with parchment or wax paper.
In the bowl of your electric mixer (or with a hand mixer) beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy and pale in color (about 3-4 minutes). Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed. Beat in the vanilla extract. Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition (batter will look curdled).
Sift or whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, and lemon zest. Add the flour mixture (in three additions) alternately with the lemon juice (in two additions), mixing until you have a smooth batter.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan, smoothing the top with the back of a spoon or an offset spatula. Bake about 40 - 50 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. (Do not over bake or the cake will be dry.) Place on a wire rack to cool for about 15 minutes, then gently remove the sides and bottom of the pan.
Lemon Frosting: Place the sifted confectioners sugar in a small bowl. Add 2 tablespoons lemon juice and stir until you have a thick and smooth glaze. Add more lemon juice or powdered sugar, as needed. Pour the frosting over the top of the cake, allowing it to drip down the sides. Let the frosting dry before covering and storing. This cake will keep for several days in an airtight container.
Makes one - 9 inch (23 cm) cake
I didnt add the flour in 3 additions but dumped it all in at once although I did add the lemon juice in two additions. For the icing, I used slightly more than 2 Tablespoons - basically how much juice I got out of one small lemon.
The cake was light and moist and had a nice tart lemony flavour to it but it wasn't really sour. Same goes for the icing as well. The glaze gave it a nice crunch too.
We all had a great time at Ms Lor Siak Por's and it's always a pleasure taking a cake over there as she and her friends always seem to enjoy my cakes. Thanks for a lovely lunch Ms LSP and Happy Chinese New Year!