I’ve been on my travels again, and am now in Woodbury, Minnesota, just outside the Twin Cities. We’re staying with more very dear friends, Tracy and David, who we haven’t seen since 2019 when we were all in Florida.
They are in the process of moving home, and had a sizeable bowl of lemons as part of ‘set dressing’ for showing their beautiful home to prospective buyers. And now they have a buyer (fingers crossed!) so what to do with a large number of lemons? Why, make a lemon cake!
I have made lemon ‘brownies’ before (read about them here) but this was a recipe Tracy (of international carrot cake fame) found via Pinterest. It was easy, quick and used about 4 lemons altogether which made a small dent in the pile!
Tracy kindly lent me the use of her kitchen, and also helped out with measuring, melting, turning on the oven, washing up and generally being very useful!
I would recommend the use of a microplane zester for the lemons, as you can make very fine zest that mixes evenly with the rest of the ingredients. Also you wouldn’t have to ice them if you wanted to keep the sugar content down a bit. Instead you could dust with icing sugar just before serving, or even leave them plain. We tested for doneness after 20 minutes and then 25, and the cake appeared to be still too wet in the middle. But – another 5 minutes and they were almost TOO done, so I would advise taking them out of the oven just before you think they are actually cooked – tricky timing, and it’s not the end of the world. But they could’ve been just a little bit more squidgy for maximum deliciousness!
The recipe is from this website Bakerella, but there are many versions of it, and a lot of the recipes are exactly the same. I do not therefore have any qualms about reproducing it here. Actually I am not reproducing it verbatim, as I have adapted it (as usual 😂), and added some blueberries.
FOR THE BARS:
1 cup plain/ all purpose flour
1 cup sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp baking powder
1 tbsp lemon zest (approx 3 lemons)
3/4 cup unsalted (or salted – omit the extra salt) butter almost completely melted and then cooled
3 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup of blueberries – optional – my addition!
FOR THE GLAZE:
1.5 cups icing sugar/ powdered sugar, sifted
2 tbsp (or a bit more) lemon juice
1 tsp lemon zest
Grease an 8” square pan or line with foil/ non stick parchment. Preheat oven to 350*/ Gas mark 4.
Mix flour, sugar, salt, baking powder and zest using a whisk.
Add melted butter, lemon juice, eggs and vanilla. Stir until completely combined. Add the blueberries.
Pour into the pan and bake for 20-25 minutes or until done. But not TOO done. Remove from oven and cool.
Make the glaze by mixing the sieved icing sugar with the lemon zest and juice, and pour over the cooled Lemonies. Let it set before cutting.