Monday, February 21, 2011

Meyer lemon olive oil cake

There must be something wrong with me. I think I have a metabolic imbalance that's making me bake these THINGS. This one smells so good . . . I was afraid to eat it because surely I gained five pounds just smelling it. I tasted it anyway. It tastes even better than it smells. I was inspired by two things: (1) I read a recipe for an olive oil poundcake that intrigued me, and (2) I had heard of Meyer lemons, never tried them, and there was a beautiful bag of them at Whole Foods. So, voila, Meyer lemon cake, inspired by a blood orange cake.

Meyer Lemon Olive Oil Cake

Adapted from cookbook In the Kitchen with a Good Appetite, by Melissa Clark, p. 356. (Hers is Blood Orange Olive Oil Cake.)

3 Meyer lemons
1 cup sugar
½ cup buttermilk
3 eggs
2/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 ¾ cups all-purpose flour
1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
¼ teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon salt
Confectioner's sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9-by-5-inch loaf pan with butter.

Grate zest from 2 lemons and place in a bowl with sugar. Using your fingers, rub ingredients together until lemon zest is evenly distributed in sugar.

Cut rind completely off two lemons. (Only pulpy interior of lemon will remain.) Cut lemon segments out of their connective membranes, remove seeds, put them in a bowl, break up into ¼ inch pieces, and set aside.

Halve remaining lemon and squeeze juice into a bowl and add buttermilk. Pour mixture into bowl with sugar and whisk well. Whisk in eggs and olive oil.

In another bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Gently stir dry ingredients into wet ingredients. Fold in pieces of lemon segments. Pour batter into prepared pan.

Bake cake for 45 minutes, or until it is golden and a tester inserted into center comes out clean. Cool on a rack for 5 minutes, then remove from pan and cool to room temperature right side up. When cake is cool, sprinkle with confectioner's sugar.

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