Thursday, August 11, 2011

Yummy & Yellow: A Triple Lemon~Blueberry Layer Cake Delight . . .

You can always count on Sweetapolita when you are craving something pretty & sweet, and this Triple Lemon Blueberry Layer cake is just the thing to bring a burst of sunshine in the month when you are hanging on with dear life to every last drop that you can, before Autumn ushers her way in and brings that early morning chill with her (oops, sorry to have to remind you again) . . .


A word from the fabulous Rosie . . .

'So here it is! A little bit crazy in there–like a literal burst of blueberries and lemon inside, sandwiching a layer of classic vanilla cake. What I love about it is the random and almost messy appearance, once sliced. As much as I love perfect layers, it wouldn’t be much of a “burst” if it was neat and tidy inside! There’s a lot going on in there, but, to  me, it all comes together so nicely. The lemon in the blueberry cake is simple and subtle with the addition of a bit of lemon zest, lemon extract, and lemon juice, which pairs well with the fresh blueberries. The lemon curd is perfectly tart, and combined with the whipped lemony (and sugary) frosting, it’s zesty and sweet. The truth is, I’m in complete lemon love (and possibly lust) with this cake!'



Lemon-Blueberry Layer Cake        (click here for printable recipe}

Ingredients

2 cups plus 6 tablespoons all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

3 cups fresh blueberries

1/2 cup sour cream

1/2 cup whole milk

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

3/4 teaspoon pure lemon extract

1 teaspoon lemon zest

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened about 20 minutes out of refrigerator

1 1/2 cups white sugar

4 large eggs

Method

Preheat oven to 350°F. Prepare three 8″ round cake pans with parchment paper, butter and flour. Sift dry ingredients into medium bowl. Transfer 1 tablespoon flour mixture to larger bowl. Add fresh blueberries and toss to coat them with flour. Set remaining flour mixture and blueberries aside.

Stir whole milk, sour cream, vanilla extract, lemon extract and lemon zest in small bowl. In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream butter and sugar, until pale yellow and very fluffy, about 5 minutes. Beat in eggs one at a time, until well combined. Mix in flour mixture alternately with milk mixture, starting and ending with flour mixture. Stir until just combined. Gently fold in blueberries. Divide batter equally among 8″ round pans.

Bake cakes until toothpick inserted into centre comes out clean, about 25 minutes. Cool cakes in pans on racks for about 10 minutes, then invert onto racks until completely cool.

*The Lemon-Blueberry cake base adapted  from Epicurious



Zesty Lemon Frosting        {click here for printable recipe}

Ingredients

1 cup soft unsalted butter

2 teaspoons lemon zest

5 cups icing sugar (or 6 for  sweeter version)

60 ml fresh lemon juice

6 tablespoons whipping cream (35% cream)

1/2 teaspoon pure lemon extract

2 tablespoons water

pinch salt

1 drop of AmeriColor “Electric Yellow” gel color (optional)

Method

Cream butter and lemon zest in bowl of electric mixer fitted with paddle attachment, about 3 minutes. Slowly add icing sugar, mixing on low speed for about 2 minutes. Add remaining ingredients and beat on med-high for 3-4 minutes until very fluffy. If using color gel, add a drop or two (really, no more than that, because too much sunshine really can be a bad thing!), then beat until blended. Yields enough to frost outside of three layer 8″ round cake.

Filling: 2 x Lemon Curd recipe from Martha Stewart

Assembly

Spread thin dollop of frosting on an 8″ thin cake board. Transfer 1 cake layer to board, face up. *Create a dam around the perimeter of the layer using frosting in a pastry bag fitted with a coupler, then spread lemon curd (apprx 1 cup) inside the dam–this prevents the curd from reaching out over edges. Top with another cake layer, face up; repeat frosting around perimeter and lemon curd filling. Top with third cake layer, face down (brown smooth side up). Spread thin layer (crumb coat) of Zesty Lemon Frosting over top and sides of cake, using offset palette knife and bench scraper for smooth finish. Place cake in refrigerator for apprx 30 mins. Remove from refrigerator and using same method, frost cake with generous layer of frosting, smoothing again. For ruffled border, add frosting to piping bag with petal tip (Wilton #123), and with skinny end facing out, use back and forth/up and down motion to create short ruffles.

Due to the lemon curd filling, keep cake covered and refrigerated (for up to 2 days) but serve room temperature.


So very yummy & almost too gorgeous to eat.  Almost . . .
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