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Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Lemon frosted cake with raisins

First of all, I have to thank Stephanie Jarvoski at for teaching me the science of baking. She has definitely convinced me that a baking novice should never take short cuts because baking is complex food science and lots of factors have to be considered in order to bake the perfect cake. And since my last defeat of the fruit cake that made me sulked for months, I am raring to do again. Knowing the technical intricacies behind baking has made me a more serious baker. So here I am, relearning to bake a simple cake before spreading my wings on more complicated projects. I have added raisins , rum-soaked, because this is what hubby likes ( just flapping my wings a little - I can't help it! ).

I did a little victory dance before the oven when the cake turns out beautiful and soft, like what cakes are supposed to be. I am going to forget about the butter and sugar guilt but simply celebrate my success for now!

Happy Teacher's Day, hubby!

Wet ingredients :

226g unsalted butter at room temperature
200g granulated white sugar
4 large eggs
1 t vanilla extract
Zest of 1 lemon

Dry ingredients :
280g white plain flour
2 T baking powder
1/4 t fine salt

60ml lemon juice

Icing :
1 C icing sugar
4 T lemon juice

Optional :
Rum soaked raisins ( 1 handful )

Method :

Preheat oven at 180C, with rack. If a black color spring form pan is used, preheat at 180 C, but bake at 160 C later.

Oil a 10 inch spring form pan and lace the bottom with parchment paper.

Sift dry ingredients twice, to rid it of lumps and aerate the dry mix.
Cream butter and sugar, starting at low speed in a clean, dry bowl. This takes about 5 minutes by machine or 10 minutes if you are doing the workout yourself.
Add eggs, 1 at a time and whisk until smooth.
Add zest and vanilla essence.

Add flour mixture and mix until just incorporated. Finally add the lemon juice. Toss optional rum-soaked raisins in flour and gently stir just before transferring to springform pan.

Bake for 180C for 45 min. As I was using a dark colored pan, I baked it at the same duration for 160 C ( Stephenie says that black absorbs heat and baking temperature should be reduced to prevent burning ).The cake is done when the tooth pick pricked into the cake center comes out clean. Cool for 1 hour and release the spring form pan side.

Preparing icing by mixing icing sugar and lemon juice, making sure it is not too watery. Drizzle over the cake and slightly chill it before serving.

Keeps well for a couple of days in the fridge. Mine didn't because it was consumed by the 3 of us by day 2.

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