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Saturday, March 5, 2016

Lemon Glazed Layer Cake | 6" Round Cake Pan Restocked

Lemon Glazed Layer Cake
There is a little cafe here in town that we go every Sunday after Church for brunch called Cafe Europa.  It is locally famous for the Lemon Cake, a layered lemon cake, with buttercream in the middle and then drizzled with a lemon glaze.  The combination of butter cream + glaze + plus dense cake + lemony goodness is just amazing.  In fact, a couple of weeks ago I was out with a big group of girls for dinner in one spot, then we all concluded that we should change venues for dessert - just for this cake.
The Lemon Cake at Cafe Europa is quite large (and the pieces are very generous, thank goodness).  A cake that size around our house is dangerous.  I made my version in a 6" Round Cake Pan ($6) that is a new addition to the store (that was just restocked!!).  This might be an odd "essential" size, but I find that this is the cake pan I reach for over and over.  We don't have too many occasions that we need a huge layer cake for... but we always have an occasion for a little one : )  It's called Tuesday night.  Or Sunday afternoon.

This 6" cake is just the right size for 6 generous slices, or 8 smallish slices.

Lemon Layer Cake

1 stick of butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
1 1/2 cups flour
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup milk
2 lemons, zested & juiced
1 teaspoon vanilla
4 tablespoons of butter
1 1/2 cups of powdered sugar
1 lemon, zested and juiced
1 1/2 cup of powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 350.

In a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment.  Cream together butter and sugar for 3 minutes.  Add eggs.  In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking powder, soda and salt.  In another separate bowl, combine milk, lemon juice, zest and vanilla.  Add half of the wet ingredients to the butter sugar mixture, mix for 5 seconds, then add half of the dry and mix for 5 seconds.  Repeat with second half, ending with dry ingredients.  Pour batter into 6" or 8" cake pan - I like to line mine with parchment paper (as noted below).  Bake for 30-35 minutes until a cake tester comes out clean.

For the buttercream filling, in a mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whip together butter and powdered sugar for 5 minutes.  

For glaze, mix together powdered sugar and lemon juice until smooth.  Pour over slightly warm cake.  Top with lemon zest. 

I'm obsessed with parchment paper sheets.  Once you start baking with them, you will never go back to buttering and flouring a pan again.  Here, I traced the bottom round, cut it out, then I cut strips of to go around the sides of the pan.

I use a little smudge of butter to hold the paper in place before I pour the batter in.  

I like to make the parchment paper sides go up further than the pan in case in would want to spill over - a little protection.  Then, I place the pan on a Small Baking Sheet, also lined with parchment paper (that I cut in half).  This way, if there is any spilling over, there will be no burning on the bottom of the oven... and no pan scrubbing.

It might sound like a little work, but there is a reason professionals use these methods.  It guarantees the cake comes out perfectly clean and makes clean-up so much easier.

You can see how easily the cake lifts out of the pan with the parchment paper.

I also love this cake stand because the top screws off of the base.  So, when I make a cake like this that is best refrigerated, I can just remove the top of the stand and put it into the fridge to chill.  

I take a serrated knife and cut the cake into two layers.  

This is the buttercream.  After whipping for 5 minutes it really transforms into something new.  I also think a cream cheese frosting would be yummmmy for a cake like this.

I like it to be "homemade" looking and imperfect.

Pour the glaze over the top and allow it to drizzle over the sides.  

I added lemon zest on top for some color and to make it look lemony.

You can serve it right away, or keep it in the refrigerator, uncovered.

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