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A Lemon Birthday and a Life Celebrated.

February 13, 2012

Dear Dzadzi,

Last week, we said goodbye to an incredible man.

Thomas R, we shall love and have you in our hearts forever. Thank you for giving us a beautiful family and for sharing your precious smile.

Miss you.

 

A celebration of a life and family, a birthday, and a visit to the beach. It was a big week. And after spending days staring at this, I knew we had to celebrate in lemons.

D. has been spoiled with this lemon poppy seed layer cake, some lemon macaroons, and a lemon sorbet this last week for his birthday, can you tell it’s a favorite flavor?

Lucky guy ;)

 

Right now we’re enjoying the simple things, hope you’re staying warm this February. It’s freezing in ny, freezing!

I’ll be back this week. Cheers! xo. sb.

 
 
 
Lemon Poppy Seed Layer Cake
Adapted from Smitten Kitchen via Kurt Gutenbrunner via Food & Wine
 
 

2/3 cup sugar

8 large egg yolks

1 large whole egg

1 1/2 tb finely grated lemon zest (from 2 lemons)

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 cup cornstarch

Pinch of salt

2 sticks (1/2 pound) unsalted butter, melted and cooled a bit

1/4 cup poppy seeds, used for half of batter (Smitten used 1/2 cup for entire cake)

Garnish:

pinch of poppy seeds

mini flower buds

 

Preheat the oven to 325°F Butter and flour two 8-inch cake pans generously. Butter the dull side of two 8-inch pieces of foil.

* I only had one 8-inch pan, so I divided the batter, one with poppyseeds and one without, and baked each cake separately.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk, beat the sugar with the egg yolks and whole egg at medium-high speed until the mixture is pale yellow and very fluffy, about 8 minutes. Beat in the lemon zest. Sift the flour and cornstarch over the egg mixture and fold in along with the pinch of salt with a rubber spatula. At medium speed, beat in the butter. Once incorporated, divide the batter into separate containers, then pour and fold in the poppyseeds into either of the batters.

Pour each batter into the prepared pans and cover tightly with the buttered foil. Bake for 45 minutes, or until the cake pulls away from the side of the pan and a cake tester inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean. Remove the foil and let the cake cool in the pan on a rack for 15 minutes. Invert the cake onto the rack and let cool completely before serving, at least 30 minutes.

Take a serrated knife and slice each cake in half to make two even cake layers with each baked cake. There will be a total of four layers. 

The cake can be wrapped in plastic and foil and left at room temperature for up to 3 days.

Note: recipe will make 4 layers of cake, not 5 as shown above. (I experimented with different sized pans and made five layers)

 

Vanilla Buttercream

*Makes enough to spread between layers of cake. If frosting entire cake, double recipe.
 
 
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened

1 cup confectioners’ sugar, powdered

3 tb whipping cream

1 tb water

2 tsp pure vanilla extract

a pinch of salt

 

In an electric mixer, with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and confectioners sugar for about 3 minutes. Add the whipping cream, water, vanilla, and salt and whip on medium speed until smooth and fluffy for about 5 minutes. Spread between the layers of cake. This frosting is best used immediately.

 

11 Comments leave one →
  1. February 13, 2012 5:50 pm

    This is a lovely cake. Love the contrast between layers. D. is a lucky guy indeed.

  2. February 13, 2012 10:02 pm

    Next to chocolate, lemon is my favorite dessert flavor, and your little cake is too cute!

  3. February 14, 2012 4:28 am

    Thanks so much, happy v day!

  4. February 14, 2012 5:00 am

    Hi Sarah, thanks for stopping by. I really enjoy reading your blog! Wish you a lovely Valentine’s Day :)

  5. Jackie permalink
    February 14, 2012 7:42 am

    Yes, “D” is one lucky guy!!
    Happy Valentine’s Day Missy

  6. February 15, 2012 2:13 pm

    Happy happy birrrfday D!

  7. February 16, 2012 3:24 am

    This is the most beautiful, grown-up cake I have ever seen! I can’t stop staring at it. Truly beautiful post.

  8. February 16, 2012 5:02 pm

    Miss Sarah B, you have turned Deb’s humble-looking cake into a masterpiece. Marvelous work! And a bittersweet celebration of life well lived.

    • February 16, 2012 9:07 pm

      Aww Kate!! You’ve been writing the sweetest comments over here lately, and you’re truly capturing the essence of the thoughts and words that are sometimes so hard for me to express. You’re sweet and lovely my lady.. Thank you. I appreciate your kindness so so much. xx <3

  9. October 14, 2012 7:47 pm

    I’m reading this recipe that has moved me to tears. I couldn’t stop thinking of this one particular soldier that I lost in Iraq while treating him. This cake has to be incredible to take me to a memory I have kept far away from my mind.You have a forever fan in me… Thank you.

    Errol

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