killing time between meals

where talking about what's for dinner while you're at lunch is totally acceptable

Let Them Eat Lemon Cake

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A couple of guys in my office are always scavenging for food. They are like little raccoons.

“Do you have any food??”

These two constantly ask me if I have anything to eat, if I will bake something soon, if I know anyone who’s got any snacks, etc. So this week, I baked a lemon cake to share. And it went over quite well! The recipe is by Ina Garten (aka Barefoot Contessa), my most favorite celebrity chef.

Lemon Yogurt Cake
Makes 1 loaf

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup plain whole-milk yogurt
1 1/3 cups sugar, divided
3 extra-large eggs
2 teaspoons grated lemon zest (2 lemons)
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice

For the glaze:
1 cup confectioners’ sugar
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease an 8 1/2 by 4 1/4 by 2 1/2-inch loaf pan. Line the bottom with parchment paper. Grease and flour the pan.
  • Sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt into a bowl. In another bowl, whisk together the yogurt, 1 cup sugar, the eggs, lemon zest, and vanilla. Slowly whisk the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients. With a rubber spatula, fold the vegetable oil into the batter, making sure it’s all incorporated. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for about 50 minutes, or until a cake tester placed in the center of the loaf comes out clean.
  • Meanwhile, cook the 1/3 cup lemon juice and remaining 1/3 cup sugar in a small pan until the sugar dissolves and the mixture is clear. Set aside.
  • When the cake is done, allow it to cool in the pan for 10 minutes. Carefully place on a baking rack over a sheet pan. While the cake is still warm, pour the lemon-sugar mixture over the cake and allow it to soak in. Cool.
  • For the glaze, combine the confectioners’ sugar and lemon juice and pour over the cake.

Next time, I think I will:
  • Take the cake out of the loaf pan before I add the glaze so it will be prettier. I didn’t this time since I was taking it to work. That glaze pool around the edges looks kinda icky to me, but clearly people didn’t have a problem with it.
  • Maybe use a standard 9 1/2 inch loaf pan. I thought it was weird that the recipe specified the odd-sized pan. Plus, the cake was really good, but it took the inside at least 10 minutes longer to finish baking than the recipe said.

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