Thursday, July 5, 2012

Triple Lemon Whiskey Cake with Whipped Lemon Cream

When I concocted this Triple Lemon Whiskey Cake, I felt that softly whipped Lemon Cream would set it off nicely. With so many recipes out there, I’m always nervous about creating something new, but what lemon lover can ever get enough lemon? The triple lemon in the name comes from the lemon in the cake, the lemon in the infusion, and the lemon in the cream. Pucker up, Dollinks!
Triple Lemon Whiskey Cake with Whipped Lemon Cream:
1 c. butter or margarine
2 c. granulated sugar
4 large eggs
1 tsp. lemon extract
Freshly grated zest of one large lemon 
3 c. all-purpose flour 
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
¼ tsp. salt
¾ c. lemon curd
¼ c. lemon juice
Preheat oven to 350 deg. F. Have all ingredients at room temperature. Cream butter with electric mixer until soft, gradually adding sugar and beating after each addition. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition and scraping down sides of bowl. Beat in lemon extract and zest. In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. In a small bowl, combine lemon juice and lemon curd. Add flour to creamed mixture alternately with juice and curd, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Scrape down sides of bowl, beating 5 min. at high speed. Spoon into greased and floured 13 x 9-in. pan, smoothing to spread evenly to all four corners of pan. Bake 35-to-40 min. until golden in color and skewer inserted in center comes out clean. While cake is still hot, use skewer to poke several more holes over top of cake for Whiskey Infusion
To Prepare the Whiskey Infusion:
¾ c. granulated sugar 
Freshly grated zest of one lemon
2 tbsp. lemon juice
3 tbsp. rye whiskey (optional - substitute lemon juice, if you prefer)
Brush hot cake with whiskey infusion
In a small saucepan, combine sugar, zest, and juice over medium heat until sugar is fully dissolved. Remove syrup from heat, cooling slightly before stirring in rye whiskey. Brush evenly over cake. Cool cake completely on wire rack. Cut into squares served directly from the pan, with softly whipped Lemon Cream on the side. 
To Prepare the Lemon Cream:
2 c. (250 mL) heavy cream (“whipping cream”)
3 tbsp. icing sugar (confectioners or powdered sugar)
1 c. lemon curd, at room temperature (see Note)
Using electric mixer, beat cream into soft peaks, adding icing sugar partway through. Serve whipping cream with cooled cake, topping cream with lemon curd. 

Note: There are lemon curd spreads, and there are lemon curd spreads. My favorite - for its color and its soft spreadability - is the E.D. Smith brand, sold North America-wide. E.D. Smith simply calls it lemon, leaving off the curd part. Believe me, Dollinks, I am not being paid to say this! Its just a plain and simple fact. 

Add sugar gradually to creamed butter or margarine

Add eggs, beating after each addition. Add curd, extract, and zest

Gradually stir in flour mixture
Pour in lemon juice

Spoon into greased and floured pan

Test for doneness. Poke holes over cake top
Cake and whiskey infusion require freshly grated zest 
If possible, I use fresh lemons rather than a bottled product

Sugar, zest, and juice are the basics for infusion

Add 3 tbsp. rye whiskey when syrup has cooled slightly

Serve with whipped cream topped with ribbon of lemon curd

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