Monday, August 22, 2011

Lemon ginger cake - a baking session inspired by The Cure

Lemon ginger cake / Bolo de limão siciliano e gengibre

There are songs I’ve loved since I was a kid but even after learning English I still don’t understand certain parts of their lyrics – thank heavens for the Internet. :)

Last week I spent much of my lunchtime listening to some of those songs and following the lyrics online. “The Caterpillar”, one of my all time favorites – which video is great, too – was an almost complete mystery to me; reading that Robert Smith was singing “dust my lemon lies with powder pink and sweet” made me realize that I hadn’t baked a lemon cake in quite a while – so I did bake one and added crystallized ginger to the batter (inspired by Martha’s recipe).

Great song, great cake. :D

Lemon ginger cake
slightly adapted from the always great Baking by Flavor

Cake:
2 ¾ cups (385g) all purpose flour
1/3 cup (40g) cake flour*
½ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
¾ teaspoon salt
1 cup (226g/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
2 cups (400g) superfine sugar
finely grated zest of 2 large lemons
2 tablespoons lemon juice
4 large eggs
1 cup minus 2 tablespoons buttermilk**, well shaken
heaping 1/3 cup finely chopped crystallized ginger***

Syrup:
½ cup (120ml) freshly squeezed lemon juice
½ cup (100g) superfine sugar

Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F. Generously butter a 25cm (10in) Bundt pan (or use cooking spray).
Sift the all purpose flour, cake flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt into a medium bowl. Set aside.
Cream the butter in the large bowl of an electric mixer on medium speed for 3 minutes. Add the superfine sugar in three additions, beating for 1 minute after each addition. Beat in the lemon zest and juice. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating for 30 seconds after each addition.
On low speed, alternately add the sifted ingredients in three additions with the buttermilk in two additions, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients. Scrape the sides of the bowl occasionally.
Fold in the chopped ginger.
Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and gently shake the pan from side to side to level the top.
Bake for 55 minutes or until risen and golden and a skewer inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean. Let the cake stand in the pan, over a wire rack, for 5-8 minutes, then carefully invert it onto another rack. Place a sheet of baking paper under the rack to catch any drips of glaze.
Make the brushing glaze while the cake is cooling in the pan: in a small non-reactive bowl, mix the lemon juice and sugar. Using a soft pastry brush, brush the hot cake with the glaze, including the sides. Cool completely before slicing – sift the cake with icing sugar before serving if desired.
The cake will keep for up to 3 days in an airtight container at room temperature.

* homemade cake flour: 1 cup (140g) all purpose flour minus 2 tablespoons + 2 tablespoons corn starch

** homemade buttermilk: place 1 tablespoon lemon juice in a 240ml-capacity measuring cup and complete with whole milk. Wait 10 minutes for it to thicken, then use the whole mixture in your recipe

*** if I were to make this cake again I would use a lot more ginger; I am a ginger addict so adjust the amount according to your taste

Serves 16

4 comments:

The Procrastobaker said...

I love the little story alongside this recipe! made me smillee. Inspiration can come from the strangest of places hey! Great recipe, lemon and ginger is a favourite combination of mine so this really looks wonnnderfull :)

Marivi said...

I always find difficult to understand the lyrics!!! But in this case what a wonderful inspiration, love this cake.

Yummy Bakes said...

Beautiful cake!

Kelli said...

I love it when inspiration strikes like that. That's how I do all my baking - but with books rather than song lyrics. I'd have never thought to pair lemon and ginger in a cake... until now. Thanks for inspiring me!

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