Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Golden Lemon Almond Cake

This Lemon Almond Bundt is a sturdy yet tender cake that gives off a lovely, nutty, zesty aroma while baking. The recipe is from Rose's Heavenly Cakes. I initially bought this book based on rave reviews it received from blogger and online foodies. Rose Levy Berenbaum's Pie and Pastry Bible was another best seller but I never got around to buying it. It didn't draw me in, despite its rave reviews (Sorry Rose!). So, I was a little hesitant ordering this new book online but I clicked "submit order" anyway.

Inside the Amazon.com box I found one of the nicest looking cookbooks I've seen! For that precise reason, I had never used this book until today. It was too pretty to make its way into the kitchen, so it sat pristinely on my bookshelf for the past 6 months. I hardly wanted to flick through the perfectly bound book; I didn't even want to crack the spine. Bear in mind that I'm the kind of person who saves the best thing on the plate for last and takes teeny tiny bites to really savor it.

Well, I'm glad I finally got over my silliness and started using this book for its intended purpose, because the recipes are as solid as the book is pretty.

Golden Lemon Almond Cake 12-14 servings | Rose's Heavenly Cakes

2/3 cup blanched sliced almonds
1 1/4 cups sugar, divided
3 large eggs, room temperature
1 cup sour cream, divided
1 1/2 tsps pure vanilla extract
3/8 tsp pure lemon oil
2 cups plus 3 tablespoons flour
1 1/4 tsps baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp salt
2 Tablespoons, loosely packed Lemon zest, finely grated
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter

1. Set an oven rack in the lower third of the oven and preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (325 degrees F if using a dark pan).

2. Toast and Grind the Almonds: Spread the almonds evenly on a baking sheet and bake for about 7 minutes, or until pale gold. Stir once or twice to ensure even toasting and avoid overbrowning. Cool completely. In a food processor, process until fairly fine. Add 1/4 cup of the sugar and process until very fine.

3. Mix the Liquid Ingredients: In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs, 1/2 cup of the sour cream, the vanilla, and lemon oil just until lightly combined. Make the Batter: In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the flat beater, mix the ground almonds, the remaining sugar, the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and lemon zest on low speed for about 30 seconds. Add the butter and the remaining sour cream. Mix on low speed until the dry ingredients are moistened. Raise the speed to medium and beat for 1 1/2 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl.

4. Starting on medium-low speed, gradually add the egg mixture in two parts, beating on medium speed for 30 seconds after each addition to incorporate the ingredients and strengthen the structure. Using a spatula or spoon, scrape the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the surface evenly with a small metal spatula.

5. Bake the Cake: Bake for 45-55 minutes, or until a wooden toothpick inserted between the tube and the side comes out clean and the cake springs back when pressed lightly in the center. An instant-read thermometer inserted near the center should read 200-205 degrees F. Make the syrup shortly before the cake is finished baking

Lemon Syrup
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup lemon juice, freshly squeezed

Make the Lemon Syrup: In a 1-cup or larger microwavable glass measure (or a small saucepan over medium heat), heat the sugar and lemon juice, stirring often until the sugar is almost completely dissolved. Do not boil. A few un-dissolved grains form a sparkly, crackly finish to the crust. Cover it tightly to prevent evaporation.

Apply the Syrup and Cool and Unmold the Cake: As soon as the cake comes out of the oven, place the pan on a wire rack, poke the cake all over with a thin skewer, and brush it with about one-third of the syrup. Let the cake cool in the pan for 10 minutes. Invert it onto a 10-inch cardboard round or serving plate. Brush the top and sides of the cake with the remaining syrup. Cool completely and wrap airtight.


Les rêves d'une boulangère (Brittany) said...

Glad you finally put your cookbook to good use! I did the same thing today. Your cake looks perfectly cooked..yummy

Jennifurla said...

I need you to send me all the cookbooks you are scared to bust open please.

This looks fab and I just love the pics.

steph- whisk/spoon said...

that's my kind of cake!! i'm like you...have had this book for ages but never baked from it. here's to tying new recipes in 2011--happy new year!

kitchen flavours said...

I have this book too, since last July, I have baked about 3 recipes from this book. This is indeed a lovely book to have. Your lemon bundt cake looks lovely, have not tried this yet! Couldn't make it for the Copycat Club this month, has been a really hectic and busy month! Hope to make it next month! Have a nice day!

~Nikki~ said...

This looks great!

Mary said...

Tia, your cake looks delicious. While I don't often post, I love to visit here. I really like the food and recipes you feature for your readers. I hope the new year brings a large measure of good things your way. Have a great day. Blessings...Mary

chayacomfycook said...

This is the perfect recipe for my husband.

I also have had the book standing on the shelf because I did not want to get it "used looking" but my best cookbooks are used looking. Time to take it off the shelf.

Your photos are always great.