Sunday, April 20, 2014

Let Them Eat Cake

It's a gorgeous Easter Sunday in NYC and I still have yet to find an abundance of spring veggies. Maybe I'm not shopping at the right places? Fine. Who needs vegetables anyway? Let's forget healthy living for a minute and just bake! 

I decided to make a dessert using only ingredients that I already had on hand, but didn't want it to be super boring looking. Hellooo, 1950s! I unearthed my bundt pan (that I've had for years but never used) to put to use for the first time.  If you don't have a bundt pan, you could swap in 2 regular (8-inch) cake pans or 1 (9x13) baking pan, but just check for doneness earlier in the baking process.

This is a very simple cake recipe, but I recommend using a stand mixer if you can. (There's no reason to exert yourself!) The cake is light in texture and sweetness so is perfect as a spring dessert. Or for breakfast. Or lunch. Or tea time. Or Mad Men viewing. You get the picture. Having a hard time hanging with the relatives? Forgot to file your taxes? Just eat cake! 

Lemon Bundt Cake
Adapted from King Arthur Flour

1 cup unsalted butter, softened
2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon salt
4 large eggs
2 teaspoons baking powder
3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 cup whole milk
Finely grated zest of 2 lemons

1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
3/4 cup sugar

1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease a 10" tube pan, or a 9" to 10", 9- to 10-cup capacity bundt-style pan.

2. Beat together the butter, sugar, and salt, until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.

3. Add the baking powder, then add the flour alternating with the milk, starting and ending with the flour. Mix until smooth. Stir in the grated lemon zest.

4. Spoon the batter into the prepared pan, smoothing the top with a spatula. Bake the cake for 50 to 55 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean.

5. While the cake is baking, make the glaze by stirring together the lemon juice and sugar in a small bowl. Set aside.

6. Remove the cake from the oven, and set it on a rack. After 5 minutes, run a knife around the edge of the pan to loosen, and turn the cake out onto a rack.

7. Poke the hot cake all over with a cake tester or toothpick. Stir the glaze to combine, and immediately brush it on the hot cake. Let it sink in, then brush on more glaze, continuing until all the glaze is used up. Allow the cake to cool before slicing. Serves 16.