Luscious Lemon Cake

Cake-Lemon Cake with Lemon Curd and Cream Cheese Frosting

Cake-Lemon Cake with Lemon Curd and Cream Cheese Frosting

This lemon cake says “spring” especially when served with a complement of fresh strawberries. I make this cake with the tart Lisbon lemons (or Eureka) but if you happen to have Meyers lemons, give it a try. The lemon flavor would be a bit more subtle.

INGREDIENTS

Cake
1 cup unsalted butter (2 sticks)
2 cups granulated sugar
4 large eggs, beaten
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup milk
4 tablespoons fresh squeezed lemon juice
1 pint fresh strawberries for garnish

DIRECTIONS
Line three 8-inch diameter cake pans with waxed paper. Set aside. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Beat sugar and butter in a large bowl until
light and fluffy. Add the beaten eggs and beat well, for 2-3 minutes, until light yellow in color.  Stir in vanilla. Sift dries: flour, baking soda and salt into a separate bowl. Stir flour mixture into batter alternately with milk, beginning and ending with dry ingredients. Stir in lemon juice.  Divide batter evenly into the prepared pans and bake about 25-30 minutes or until cake tester comes out clean. Cool cakes completely on cake racks and remove waxed paper.

To Assemble
Using a long serrated knife, cut each layer into horizontal halves and spread lemon curd over each half layer and frosting between whole layers and on top of cake. Garnish cake or cake plate with whole or sliced strawberries. *If you like frosting the sides, you can make 1.5 frosting recipes and frost the entire cake.

Lemon curd
2 large eggs
6 tablespoons sugar
6 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons grated lemon peel
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, chilled and cut into small pieces

Whisk eggs and sugar in medium sauce pan. Add lemon juice, butter and lemon peel. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring all the while, until mixture begins to thicken and thermometer temperature reaches 165 degrees. Sauce will be thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Remove from heat and transfer lemon curd to a clean bowl and cool. If the curd is lumpy, strain before chilling. When cooled, cover with plastic wrap directly on surface and chill until cold in refrigerator.

Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting
8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
3+ cups powdered sugar
1-2 tablespoons lemon juice

Beat cream cheese and butter until light and fluffy and thoroughly mixed. Add half of the powdered sugar and beat well. Add lemon juice and beat well. Add remaining powdered sugar, enough to make frosting the desired consistency.

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