Saturday, July 14, 2012

Happy Birthday, Honey!

Caleb's Birthday Cake.......

LemonPoppyseed Layer CakeYield: one 6" triple layer cake, or one 8" double layer cake

Necessary Materials:
For the Lemon Poppyseed Cake
2 1/2 cups cake flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pure lemon extract
The zest of 2 lemons
3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 cup milk
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 1/2 cups natural cane sugar
2 large eggs
3 large egg yolks (save the whites for the frosting)
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2-3 tablespoons poppyseeds, maybe more 
For the Lemon Curd (used in the Mousse, between layers)


  • 5 egg yolks
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 4 lemons, zested and juiced
  • 1 stick butter, cut into pats and chilled


Add enough water to a medium saucepan to come about 1-inch up the side. Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Meanwhile, combine egg yolks and sugar in a medium size metal bowl and whisk until smooth, about 1 minute. Measure citrus juice and if needed, add enough cold water to reach 1/3 cup. Add juice and zest to egg mixture and whisk smooth. Once water reaches a simmer, reduce heat to low and place bowl on top of saucepan. (Bowl should be large enough to fit on top of saucepan without touching the water.) Whisk until thickened, approximately 8 minutes, or until mixture is light yellow and coats the back of a spoon. Remove promptly from heat and stir in butter a piece at a time, allowing each addition to melt before adding the next. Remove to a clean container and cover by laying a layer of plastic wrap directly on the surface of the curd. Refrigerate for up to 2 weeks.

For the Lemon Curd Mousse
1/2 cup lemon curd (above in Italics)
1 cup heavy cream
1 tablespoon natural cane sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

For the Swiss Buttercream
3 large egg whites (from the cake)
3/4 cup sugar
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

For the Lemon Poppyseed Cake
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F,with a rack in the middle.
Butter and flour three 6" cakepans (or two 8" pans) and set aside.
Sift the cake flour, baking powder,baking soda and salt into a medium bowl and set aside.
Combine the lemon zest, lemon juiceand buttermilk in a small bowl, stirring to combine. Set aside.
Cream together the butter and sugar on mediumspeed until pale and fluffy, about 3-4 minutes.
Turn the mixer off and scrape downthe sides of the bowl. Add the eggs, yolks and vanilla and mix onmedium for 1-2 minutes, until light and fluffy.
Alternately add the dry and wetingredients to the butter mixture in three additions, beginning and ending withthe dry.
Mix until the final addition offlour has been incorporated into the batter and the dry ingredients havedissolved.
Stir the poppy seeds into the batterwith a spatula, and portion the batter into the prepared pans.
Bake at 350 degrees F for 25-30minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cakes comes outclean.
Remove from the oven and cool in thepans for 10 minutes. Then transfer the cakes from the pans to a wire coolingrack to cool completely.

Constructing the Lemon Curd Mousse
In the bowl of a stand mixer withthe whisk attachment fitted on, combine the heavy cream, sugar and vanilla.
Whip on medium-high speed until softpeaks form.
Using a spatula, gentlyfold the lemon curd into the whipped cream until combined.

Constructing the Swiss Buttercream
Combine the egg whites and sugar in a bowl.
Place the bowl over a saucepan withabout 2 inches of water in it, taking care the bottom of the bowl doesn't touchthe water.
Place the saucepan with the bowl ontop over medium heat, whisking gently.
Whisk the mixture until no longergrainy and warm, and the temperature is 120 degrees F.
Remove the bowl from the heat andwhip on medium-high speed for 5-8minutes, or until the sides of the bowl are cool and the mixture is pale andvoluminous.
With the mixer on low, add thebutter a few tablespoons at a time until fully incorporated. Add the lemonzest, lemon extract and vanilla; whip on medium for about 1minute, until fluffy.

All together now!
Place one cake layer on a smallcardboard cake round, and put about 2-3 tablespoons of lemon curd mousse ontop. Spread the mousse in an even layer, and top with another cake layer.
Repeat until the final cake layer ison.
Place about 1/2 cup of buttercreamon the top layer and gently work the frosting from the center to the edges,working the frosting to the sides of the cake.
Smooth the frosting as evenly on thecake as possible, and top with any type of sprinkles you like! I like to add slivered almonds to the sides.
Chill the cake in the fridge forabout 30 minutes prior to serving.

No comments:

Post a Comment