The Best Lemon Cake Ever

best lemon cake ever lovely lanvinI’m a big fan of Ina Garten, The Barefoot Contessa.  I have been a fan of hers from the first time I saw her on The Martha Stewart Show many years ago.  She wasn’t a famous Food Network star back then, she was just Martha’s friend. A friend who had an adorable specialty food shop in the Hamptons, called The Barefoot Contessa, that was loved by everyone who walked through the door.  When I watched her cook on Martha’s show I knew she would become famous one day.  The way she spoke and her warm smile, reminded me of a good friend or a close relative.  I totally felt at ease watching her and listening to her voice, carefully explaining each step of her recipe as she prepared it. When I heard that she was coming out with her first cookbook I rushed right out to buy it and continued to buy each and every cookbook she has written since then.  Her cookbooks are always my “go to” books when i have trouble deciding what to make for dinner or what main course or appetizer to serve at a party I’m planning to throw.  Every Barefoot Contessa recipe I make always comes out tasting great and has everyone asking for the recipe.  This Lemon Cake recipe was the very first Barefoot Contessa dessert I made and it is still one of my favorites, so light and buttery, you will not be able to stop at just one slice.  I make it as often as possible and believe me, it will disappear quickly.  Luckily this recipe makes two loaves!  I know it will become a favorite of yours too.

Ingredients
1/2 pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 1/2 cups granulated sugar, divided
4 extra-large eggs, at room temperature
1/3 cup grated lemon zest (6-8 large lemons)
3 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon kosher salt
3/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice, divided
3/4 cup buttermilk, at room temperature
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
For the glaze:
2 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
3 1/2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

Directions
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour 2 (8 1/2 by 4 1/4 by 2 1/2-inch) loaf pans. You may also line the bottom with parchment paper, if desired.

Cream the butter and 2 cups granulated sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. With the mixer on medium speed, add the eggs, 1 at a time, and the lemon zest.

Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a bowl. In another bowl, combine 1/4 cup lemon juice, the buttermilk, and vanilla. Add the flour and buttermilk mixtures alternately to the batter, beginning and ending with the flour. Divide the batter evenly between the pans, smooth the tops, and bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour, until a cake tester comes out clean.

Combine 1/2 cup granulated sugar with 1/2 cup lemon juice in a small saucepan and cook over low heat until the sugar dissolves. When the cakes are done, allow to cool for 10 minutes. Remove the cakes from the pans and set them on a rack set over a tray or sheet pan; spoon the lemon syrup over them. Allow the cakes to cool completely.

For the glaze, combine the confectioners’ sugar and the lemon juice in a bowl, mixing with a wire whisk until smooth. Pour over the tops of the cakes and allow the glaze to drizzle down the sides.

Adapted from The Barefoot Contessa Parties cookbook

best lemon cake ever lovely lanvin

The Best Lemon Cake Ever
 
Ingredients
  • ½ pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 2½ cups granulated sugar, divided
  • 4 extra-large eggs, at room temperature
  • ⅓ cup grated lemon zest (6-8 large lemons)
  • 3 cups flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¾ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice, divided
  • ¾ cup buttermilk, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • For the glaze:
  • 2 cups confectioners' sugar, sifted
  • 3½ tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour 2 (8½ by 4¼ by 2½-inch) loaf pans. You may also line the bottom with parchment paper, if desired.
  2. Cream the butter and 2 cups granulated sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. With the mixer on medium speed, add the eggs, 1 at a time, and the lemon zest.
  3. Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a bowl. In another bowl, combine ¼ cup lemon juice, the buttermilk, and vanilla. Add the flour and buttermilk mixtures alternately to the batter, beginning and ending with the flour. Divide the batter evenly between the pans, smooth the tops, and bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour, until a cake tester comes out clean.
  4. Combine ½ cup granulated sugar with ½ cup lemon juice in a small saucepan and cook over low heat until the sugar dissolves. When the cakes are done, allow to cool for 10 minutes. Remove the cakes from the pans and set them on a rack set over a tray or sheet pan; spoon the lemon syrup over them. Allow the cakes to cool completely.
  5. For the glaze, combine the confectioners' sugar and the lemon juice in a bowl, mixing with a wire whisk until smooth. Pour over the tops of the cakes and allow the glaze to drizzle down the sides.

 

Comments

  1. Yum! You had me at lemon and cake.

    • Thank u! It’s a really great cake and travels well too. I’ve taken it to many parties and potlucks and love having a slice with my coffee in the morning.

  2. Looks so delicious and moist! I am bookmarking this recipe for sure 🙂

    • Thank you for the comment Lia! You will love this cake for sure, super moist and great with afternoon tea too

  3. Hey there Shirley,
    Another question for you – how do you recommend storing this (as in, for a day or two)? I’m thinking of making it tonight. 🙂

  4. Oh my… This is really lovely. lemon is one of my ultimate favorite flavors. This cake looks totally scrumptious!

    • Thank you for the nice comment! It’s a great cake with big lemon flavor. If you love lemon then this is a cake for you 🙂

  5. I love Ina too! This cake looks amazing!

  6. Thank you for the comment, this is always a crowd pleaser!

  7. Hey! This is my 1st comment here so I just wanted to give a quick shout out and tell you I genuinely enjoy reading your blog posts. Can you suggest any other blogs/websites/forums that go over the same subjects? Thanks for your time!

  8. Your suggestions are spot on…I assume the thought of persistence is especially essential…it’s which you do over time that details…delivering constant quality.

  9. That’s a seriously kick ass lemon cake!

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