I was delighted to see the response for yesterday’s photos since I’d planned to post the cake recipe today. I’m always a little nervous about updating old recipes, because I don’t know if anyone will feel like they’re getting something new out of the blog. It’s great when I get the chance to update things for the better.
It’s going back to recipes like this one that show me that I really have grown a little since I first started blogging. I first developed this recipe to be a cupcake recipe. Michael’s been begging me to make them again FOREVER, but it seems like I’m always trying something new and somehow I never got to it.
Still, when we were discussing birthday cakes a few weeks ago, I told him of this image I had of a lemon cake with lemon cream frosting and raspberry sauce. His eyes got wide, his mouth opened a little and he said “can we PLEASE have that sometime soon?!”
I decided to make it a priority, so it was one of his 14 Days of Valentine’s gifts over the weekend. He was thrilled.
I ended up not having to tweak my original cupcake recipe much. I doubled it, so there’d be enough for a layer cake, then I doubled the lemon cream frosting and made a simple raspberry sauce. It worked out beautifully and I was thrilled! Watch out for that lemon cream frosting…it’s addictive. In the best way possible (it’s also really good on sugar cookies).
Tip: If you have a hard time getting your cakes out of your cake pans, prep your pan by buttering or spraying it, then placing a circle of parchment paper on the bottom of the pan, then buttering or spraying the parchment. I’ve recently taken to doing this and it’s worked like a charm every time.
For the cake:
- 1/2c butter, room temperature
- 2c sugar
- zest of 4 lemons
- 4 eggs
- 1c buttermilk
- 2tsp lemon extract
- 1tsp vanilla extract
- 2 1/2c flour
- 1/2tsp salt
- 1tsp baking powder
For the Lemon Cream Icing:
- 2 (8oz) packages Neufchatel (1/3 less fat) cream cheese at room temp (you could use full-fat)
- 12 Tbsp butter, at room temperature
- juice of two lemons
- 1–1 1/2tsp lemon extract (add just enough so you don’t feel overwhelmed. I like mine on the lemony side)
- 1tsp vanilla extract
- 1–1 1/2c powdered sugar (you may add more if you want a stiffer frosting)
For the Raspberry Sauce
- 2c raspberries, fresh or frozen (thawed)
- 2–3 Tbsp sugar
- juice of 1 lemon
For the cake:
- Cream butter, sugar, and lemon zest until light and fluffy. Mix in eggs, one at a time, making sure the first egg is well incorporated before adding the second. In a separate bowl, combine buttermilk, lemon extract, and vanilla. In another bowl, sift together flour, salt, and baking powder.
- Alternate adding dry and wet ingredients by adding 1/3 of the dry mixture into the butter/sugar, then 1/2 the buttermilk mixture. After adding the last 1/3 of the dry mixture, stop mixer or hand mixer and stir in by hand till just combined (over beating after adding flour will make for more dry, dense cake).
- If making a layer cake, pour batter into two round cake pans that have been sprayed or buttered and lined with parchment. Bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool 5-7 minutes, then turn out of cake pans and allow to cool completely before frosting.
- If making cupcakes, pour into two muffin pans lined with muffin cups. Bake at 350 for about 20 minutes or till tops are JUST golden and cupcakes test clean with a toothpick. Allow to cool entirely before frosting.
For the lemon cream icing:
- Cream together cream cheese and butter till well combined and not lumpy. Add lemon juice, 1 tsp lemon extract, and vanilla. Beat in 1c powdered sugar. Taste and add more lemon extract if desired. If you want a stiffer frosting, feel free to stir in more powdered sugar. If you want it looser, you can add less. It’s really personal preference.
- Frost cupcakes or assemble layer cake by placing one cake layer on your plate/cake stand, 1/2 of the frosting, the second cake layer, and the remaining frosting. Serve with raspberry sauce.
For the Raspberry Sauce:
- In a blender or food processor, puree raspberries with sugar and lemon juice. Taste and add additional sugar if desired. Push through a mesh strainer to remove seeds and refrigerate until ready to serve.