Recipe by Miss Erin C.
This cake graced the cover of the February 2002 issue of Food and Wine and is my next "Big Dessert" it's absolutely beautiful.
Top Review by BarbaraK
This cake has an awsome lemon flavor. I thought the cake sounded bland so added 1T of lemon zest. I didn't need to. The cake is very very sweet. The only problems I encountered were the meringue is way way too much. And I put it on thick and high but still threw about half the bowl away. The other problem is because it is refrigerated, it is a little dry. But, I enjoyed it. It is good.
- 3 cups cake flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1⁄2 teaspoon salt
- 1⁄2 lb unsalted butter, softened
- 2 cups sugar
- 4 large eggs, room temperature
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup milk, room temperature
- 9 large egg yolks
- 1 cup sugar
- 1⁄2 cup fresh lemon juice
- 1⁄4 teaspoon salt
- 4 ounces unsalted butter, cut into 8 pieces
- 2 1⁄4 cups sugar
- 1 1⁄2 cups egg whites (about 1 dozen whites from extra large eggs)
- 3⁄4 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
Directions See How It's Made
- Preheat the oven to 350F degrees.
- Butter 2 9" round cake pans and line the bottoms with parchment.
- Butter the paper and dust the pans lightly with flour, tapping out any excess In a medium bowl, sift together the cake flour, baking powder and salt.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the sugar with the butter at high speed until fluffy, about 5 minutes.
- Add the eggs and egg yolks, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition.
- Beat in the vanilla.
- Beat in the flour mixture at low speed in 3 batches, alternating with the milk, beat until just smooth.
- Scrape the batter into the prepared pans and smooth the surfaces.
- Bake for 35-40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
- Let the cakes cool on racks for 10 minutes, then unmold onto the racks and let cool completely.
- Fill a large bowl with ice water.
- In a heavy medium sauce pan, whisk the egg yolks with the sugar, lemon juice and salt.
- Add the butter and cook over moderate heat, stirring constantly until the curd is thick nd just beginning to simmer, about 5 minutes.
- Set the saucepan in the water bath and chill the curd, whisking occasionally.
- In a saucepan, bring 1" of water to a boil.
- In the clean bowl of a stand mixer, whisk the sugar, egg whites and lemon juice.
- Set the bowl over the saucepan and cook, whisking constantly until the sugar dissolves, about 6 minutes.
- Return the bowl to the mixer and beat the meringue at medium speed for about 10 minutes, or until cooled to room temperature.
- Continue beating at high speed until the meringue is thick, shiny and billowy, about 15 minutes longer.
- Assemble the cake-----------.
- Using a serrated knife, trim the cake tops to make them level.
- Halve each cake horizontally.
- Set 1 layer on a cake plate, cut side up, spread with 1/3 of the curd.
- Set another layer on top and spread with another 1/3 of the curd.
- Set another layer on top and spread the remaining curd, cover with the final layer of cake, cut side down.
- With a large offset spatula, frost the sides of the cake with a thin layer of meringue.
- Top the cake with the remaining meringue and swirl decoratively, then serve.
- Make ahead: The layers can be wrapped in plastic and refrigerated for 2 days or frozen up to 1 month.
- The curd can be refrigerated for 3 days.
- The assembled cake can be refrigerated for up to 2 days.