The Cake of Your Dreams

6 July 2013

We have a big old birthday happening this week, and I just want to make cakes every day, so we have kicked off in advance this morning.  Yesterday, Luna and I put together a variation on one of the most delicious cakes I can think of – an Angel Cake – sorry it’s not vegan…!   That’s it up there… below is the Angel Cake, as per the original recipe.

And with flowers at the High Tea…

So pretty.  SO delicate and delicious.  But I digress, we have (had) a load of lemons to use up, so I figured we’d whip up a lemony variation on the Angel Cake, throw in some zest, lemon juice, slice it across and fill with some divine lemon honey, smother it in some cream cheese icing….  that sort of thing.  So we did.

Here’s the recipe from my copy of The Victory Binding of the American Women’s Cook Book; Wartime Edition (which was a lovely birthday present, aren’t I just lucky?) which I Just Love.

Here’s the version Luna and I made:

Lemon Dream Cake

Dry ingredients:

1/4 cup sugar

1 cup sifted flour, half whole meal, half plain

Zest from about 4/5 lemons

Egg base:

1 cup egg whites (8 to 10 eggs)

1 tea spoon cream of tartar

1/2 tea spoon salt

1 cup sugar

2 tea spoons lemon juice

While you beat the egg whites, cream of tartar and salt to a stiff foam in your mixer, sift 1/4 cup of sugar with the flour together four times (great job for a small person) grate lemon zest in top, obviously this will not sift so very well, so maybe set it aside until you combine at the end.  Add add lemon juice to egg mix, followed by the sifted sugar and flour, gently folding it in, a little at a time.  Pour into a large ungreased cake tin, cut through batter with a knife to remove any large bubbles.

Bake in a moderate oven, 350 / 180 degrees, for 45 – 60 mins.  Do keep an eye on it, you don’t want it over done.  As soon as it looks slightly golden on top, check to see if a clean knife inserted in the middle comes out clean.  In my useless old Fisher and Paykel Paprika, it this cake cooks in 20 minutes on 150.  Allow to cool, then carefully release from tin, ice eat.  Have a cup of tea.

We made up a Lemon Honey to use up the rest of the lemon juice and egg yolks, I used an Aunt Daisy recipe to start with.  It went something like this…

In a double boiler style set up, add 225gms of butter, 450gms sugar, juice and zest of two lemons, melt to combine, apparently it’s not supposed to boil, but it is supposed to thicken slowly, then you pour it into your jars.  So I added my eight egg yolks, and I used maybe 5 lemons?  But it didn’t thicken, so I added a little arrowroot power, which seemed to thicken it a touch.

While I was waiting for this to melt, I made the cream cheese icing, which is basically one pot of cream cheese (ours come in 250gm pots) adding enough icing sugar to reach the right consistency, more lemon zest and a dash or two or lemon juice, I use my trusty mixer for this.  Easy.  Yum.

I mentioned we sliced and filled this cake, my plan was to use the lemon honey on the inside (surprise!) and use the cream cheese icing for the outside, but as the lemon honey was so liquid I whipped out a small amount of cream cheese icing and the lemon honey, whisked that up, and voila!  Perfect, lemony and creamy.  So, carefully spread the base with this, not quite to the edge, place the top back on, and carefully and evenly spread the heavenly cream cheese lemon icing all the way around.  By the way, I did a crumb coat, with a small amount of icing diluted with lemon juice – a crumb coat is a light coat of icing to pick up any loose cakey bits that you don’t want to smear all over the perfectly iced top.  I recommend crumb coats when it counts, which is probably for all cakes.

Check THIS out:

I don’t eat this without a cup of tea, trust me, it’s so rich your head feels like it’s going to explode.

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