Monday, March 30, 2009

Orangette's Lemon Yogurt Cake

In case you hadn't figured it out already, I really like cake. I was once reading an interview with Duff the guy who runs Charm City Cakes in Baltimore and he said he eats at least one piece of cake every day for "quality control purposes." At that moment, I seriously questioned my commitment to journalism. The only problem with cakes is that so often they involve a lot of butter, so I always like to find cakes that have different bases like oil or yogurt. I've been reading Orangette's new book, A Homemade Life, and the cake that found her a husband is such a cake: French-style Yogurt Cake with Lemon. I have to say, it's pretty damn good.

Difficulty: Easy, does require a zester though
Eat Rating: Awesome. The cake is really light and fluffy. Really great if you like lemons. I might try it with Meyer Lemons next time though, since they are a little sweeter. The recipe says you can also substitute orange or tangerine.

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
pinch of salt
2 tsp freshly grated lemon zest
1/2 cup plain yogurt (LN: he says you have to use whole-milk, but mine turned out fine with nonfat)
1 cup sugar
3 large eggs
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 1/4 cup powdered sugar
1/4 cup, plus 3 tbsp lemon juice

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease the bottom of a 9-inch round cake pan. Line the bottom on the pan with wax paper or parchment paper and grease the paper.

In a bowl, mix flour, baking powder, salt and lemon zest. In a separate large bowl, add yogurt, sugar and eggs, stirring until well combined. Add the flour mixture and stir to combine, then add the oil and mix until you have a pale yellow batter. Pour into pan and bake for 35 minutes.

Cool the cake on a wire rack for 15 minutes, then remove from pan. Invert the cake onto the rack so it sits with the dome-side up.

In a small bowl, combine 1/4 cup powdered sugar and 1/4 cup lemon juice. Whisk until smooth and spoon the syrup over the top of the cake, allowing to soak in and dribble down the sides. Cool the cake completely.

Once cooled, combine the remaining 1 cup of powdered sugar with the 3 tbsp of lemon juice to make an icing. Spoon icing over the cake and serve immediately.

A slice of lemon-y deliciousness

1 comment:

  1. Leah,

    While I greatly appreciate your blog, I am hoping you consider an overhaul of your "rating" system.

    What is easy to you, an experienced cake baker extraordinaire, might actually be difficult for people like Joe the Plumber.

    Might I suggest the establishment of an "Office on Rating" to conduct research and development of a system that is more objective, easier to understand and based on scientific findings.

    Furthermore, it is in the opinion of the average citizen that the Rating Office include a board of non-compensated directors to oversee the creation of a new rating system.

    The board should be made up of 10 individuals from varying political backgrounds with substantial cake rating experience. They should author an annual report to you on their findings.

    There should be authorized two pieces of cake a day for each of fiscal 2009-2015 for the activities in paragraphs three (3) through five (5).

    Thank you for your attention to this manner. And for rocking.