Our landlords happen to be our next door neighbors which is lovely because they’re lovely people. They have a lemon tree in their back yard and insisted when we moved in that we help ourselves to their lemons. I’m usually too embarrassed to go poking around in their yard, but after a few glasses of vino and if its dark out I sometimes let myself in to their yard like a weirdo and pilfer a few. I tend to only take the ones that have already fallen on the ground, all bruised and forlorn. Plus thats how I justify the stealing, like I’m the one doing them a favor. I’m sure this all reflects on my low self-esteem somehow, I’ll figure that out later. Right now I’m too busy baking. With the lemons I just stole.
I have a fair number of gluten free folks in my life, and even though gluten is my favorite segment of that food pyramid (its a segment of the food pyramid, right? its the one right next to red wine and mcflurries?) I do feel worlds better too when I limit the amount of gluten in my diet. So. Gluten free lemon cake!
I usually don’t bake because I’m terrible at it and incredibly impatient with recipes and because bakeries exist. But sometimes I’m feeling extra home-maker-y.
What you will need:
- 3 or 4 large Meyer Lemons (approximately 12 oz, total to yield 1 cup of whole lemon puree)
- 3 large eggs
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup honey or maple syrup
- 3 cups almond meal
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp lemon extract
- 1 tblspn lemon curd
For the icing:
- 3 Tbsp unsalted butter, at room temperature
- juice of 1 lemon
- 1 1/2 cups confectioner’s sugar
- Set oven to 325F
- Wash the lemons and put them in a pot. Cover them with water and bring to a boil. Boil for 15 minutes.
- Drain the lemons and let them cool until you can handle them. Cut them open and remove the seeds, but keep everything else. Do this on a plate so you can retain all the juices. Once you have removed all the seeds, put everything into a food processor or use an immersion blender like I did. Blend until finely pureed. You may need to pulse the machine at first, and scrape down the sides as necessary to get everything smooth. This will only take a couple of minutes. You will need one cup of lemon puree for the cake.
- Beat the eggs and the sugar until pale in color. (The original recipe called for a cup f sugar but I subbed half a cup for a natural sweetener like honey or maple syrup. You could sub the whole cup, or use Stevia) Add the lemon extract, lemon curd and honey/maple syrup.
- Fold in the almond meal, baking powder, and lemon puree. Mix until thoroughly combined.
- Turn the batter into a greased 9″ springform pan. Smooth out the surface so it is even.
- Bake for about 50 -60 minutes, just until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
- Cool on a rack for 10 minutes, then gently release the sides of the pan and remove the cake to finish cooling.
- Make the icing while the cake is cooling. Combine the sugar with the butter and lemon juice. Beat until smooth and creamy. Adjust the texture by adding more sugar or more lemon juice. If you prefer a less tangy icing, use less lemon juice and add a little milk or cream. Spread the icing on the completely cooled cake. Add tiny curls of lemon rind and a dusting of powdered sugar.
- Pucker up and enjoy a sweet and tangy slice with coffee!