I picked my first lemons from my gorgeous lemon tree yesterday. I bring her in and out from the cold weather so that no frost touches her. I play music for her. She rewards me with her fruit.
They are the size of oranges. I have had this tree for years always thinking they were limes. I had no idea how long it took these fruits to ripen, almost a year. My impatient self picked them too soon unbeknown that they were only half way through the process of becoming a gorgeous bright yellow lemon. The feeling of gratitude and abundance from growing my own fruit is wonderfully rich. Why don’t I do this more often and with other fruit?
To expand on my rich abundant fruit, I must make something fabulous with my lemons. I have been doing a pretty good job with my healthy eating, so I have decided to make a cake. My sweet tooth is forever eager for some sugar. A year of growing lemons seems to be a good enough reason to celebrate with a scrumptious cake. I can also think of no better way to welcome warmer weather than to celebrate with a lemony cake. Let’s waste no more time! First things first, let’s gather our lemons.
½ pound unsalted butter at room temperature
1 cup sugar
½ cup brown sugar packed
1 tablespoon lemon zest
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 eggs at room temperature
2 ½ cups patent flour or cake flour
1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ cup milk
½ cup fresh lemon juice
2 pints fresh raspberries
2 tablespoons all purpose flour
Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting
1 package neufchatel or cream cheese softened
8 tablespoons unsalted butter softened
4 cups confectioner’s sugar plus tablespoon
Zest of one lemon
1 tablespoon lemon
Pinch of pink hymalayian salt
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Prepare 2 round 9 inch cake pans with butter, flour and parchment paper.
In your standing mixer with paddle attachment, add butter, sugars, lemon zest and vanilla extract, beating at high speed until light and fluffy. Scrape down the sides of the bowl throughout. Add eggs one at a time.
In a second bowl whisk dry ingredients of patent flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients at a slow speed. Stop after about 5 turns with the mixer even though it may not be fully mixed. Fold in the milk and the fresh lemon juice being careful to NOT OVERMIX.
Divide batter evenly between two cake pans. Bake for about 35 minutes checking the center for doneness with a toothpick.
Let cakes cool completely before frosting.
For making the icing, in another clean bowl using stand mixer and paddle attachment, add neufchatel and butter, mixing until light and creamy. On low speed, add 4 cups of confectioner’s sugar. Mix again until creamy and fluffy. Lastly add lemon zest, lemon juice and salt. Mix again until desired consistency for icing. If it is too thin, add your extra tablespoon of confectioners sugar. Now, you are ready to ice your cake.
After your cake is decorated, enjoy every moment of indulgance. And if you want but only if you want, share it with a friend. 🙂