Loved this cake! Like an angel food that has been compressed and moistened and bathed in luscious lemony goodness. Rob and I both loved this – and our company did too. Served it with macerated raspberries and freshly whipped cream, well, delightful. This takes a little bit more effort since you have to make the lemon curd first – but it is not difficult and worth the time. You can make the curd a day or 3 before you make the cake – and that will make it all the easier. This is perfect for Spring which is right around the corner (thank goodness!)
lemon curd cake (from 4 Star Desserts by Emily Luchetti):
4 large egg yolks
2 large eggs
1 & 1/4 cups sugar
1/2 cup plus 3 tablespoons fresh squeezed lemon juice
2 cups sifted cake flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon baking powder
4 tablespoons (half stick) unsalted butter, softened
2 teaspoons finely chopped lemon zest (yellow only)
6 large egg whites
1 tablespoon confectioners’ sugar
Gather ingredients from above, bring eggs to room temp, set butter out, make lemon juice, and measure out the rest. Being organized will help you here.
Butter and flour a 9 inch round cake pan that is 3 inches high. (I used a spring-form pan since my cake pans are only 2 inches high.)
Fill a medium saucepan 1/4 full of water. Bring to a low boil.
In a medium stainless steel bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, eggs, and only 1/2 cup of the sugar. Stir in 1/2 cup of lemon juice.
Now place the bowl on top of the saucepan of low boiling water. Make sure that the bottom of the stainless bowl does not touch the water or it will get too hot.
Set up a mesh strainer over a container to place the curd (once cooked).
Cook the mixture over the hot water, stirring with a wooden spoon until thick. This might take about 10 minutes or so. You will see it visibly thicken – then immediately remove from heat and strain the curd into the container. Place plastic wrap directly on the surface of the curd and chill until cold (or hold in fridge for a couple of days until you are ready to make the cake.)
Sift together the cake flour, 3/4 cup of the sugar, the salt and the baking powder and set aside.
With the paddle attachment of your mixer, mix together the lemon curd, butter, lemon zest and remaining 3 tablespoons lemon juice. Mix until well combined. On lowest speed stir in the dry ingredients. Place into a medium bowl and clean out your mixer bowl to beat up the egg whites.
Preheat oven to 325.
With the whip attachment of the electric mixer, beat the whites on medium speed until a frothy (white bubbles will appear). Increase to high speed and gradually add the remaining 1 1/2 cups sugar. Whip until soft peaks form.
Fold the egg whites into the cake batter. Spread the cake batter into the pan.
Bake until a skewer or toothpick comes out just clean (about 50-55m). Cool and then unmold cake. Sprinkle with the confectioners’ sugar and serve.