RECIPE: Lemon Cakes with Basil Lemon Syrup

riverrat1July 1, 2006

This may be the best lemon dessert I've ever tasted. I made these for dessert tonight. Very Very Good!!

I substituted regular cake flour for the matzo cake flour.


For cakes

1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, softened, plus 1 1/2 tablespoons, melted

3/4 cup matzo cake flour plus additional for dusting

2/3 cup plus 1/4 cup sugar

1/4 teaspoon salt

3 large eggs, separated, at room temperature for 30 minutes

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest

For syrup

1 1/4 cups sugar

1 1/2 cups water

1 (4- by 1-inch) strip fresh lemon zest

1/2 cup fresh lemon juice

8 large fresh basil sprigs

For whipped cream

1 cup chilled heavy cream

Special equipment: a muffin pan with 12 (1/2-cup) muffin cups

Garnish: small fresh basil leaves

Make cakes:

Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly brush 8 muffin cups with some of melted butter and chill 2 minutes, then butter again and chill 1 minute more. Dust cups with matzo cake flour, knocking out excess.

Beat together softened butter, 2/3 cup sugar, and 1/8 teaspoon salt in a large bowl with an electric mixer at medium-high speed until pale and fluffy, then add egg yolks, 1 at a time, beating until well blended. Beat in lemon juice and 2 teaspoons zest until combined. Add flour and mix at low speed until just combined.

Beat whites with remaining 1/8 teaspoon salt in another bowl with cleaned beaters until they hold soft peaks. Add 2 tablespoons sugar, a little at a time, beating, then beat until whites just hold stiff peaks. Stir one fourth of whites into yolk mixture to lighten, then fold in remaining whites gently but thoroughly. Spoon batter into 8 prepared muffin cups.

Blend remaining 2 tablespoons sugar and 1 teaspoon zest with your fingertips and sprinkle over batter, then bake until cakes are puffed, edges are golden, and a wooden pick or skewer inserted in center of cake comes out clean, 20 to 25 minutes. Cool cakes in pan on a rack 15 minutes, then lift out cakes carefully (tops will break easily) and cool completely on rack.

Make syrup:

Bring all syrup ingredients to a boil, covered, in a 3-quart heavy saucepan over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, then remove lid and boil 10 minutes. Pour syrup through a sieve into a bowl, pressing on and then discarding solids. Cool to room temperature.

Assemble dessert:

Beat cream in a bowl with cleaned beaters until it just holds stiff peaks.

Spoon 1/4 cup syrup into each of 8 shallow bowls and top with cakes. Spoon whipped cream on top of cakes.

Makes 8 servings.


April 2005

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Carol Schmertzler Siegel

I have to give these a try when I have time. I love lemon! Thanks, Riverrat! I remember the picture from a different thread and it looked so good.

    Bookmark   July 8, 2006 at 11:16PM
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