This recipe is adapted from the "Lemon Cake" recipe from the
Essential NY Times Cookbook. The original is dairy and relies on both a finishing syrup and glaze.
This lemon cake is a very simple loaf cake, in this case made with soured non-dairy milk. The hot baked cake is reinforced hot with lemon syrup. The sparkly top is created by sprinkling sparkling sugar on top of the cake batter prior to baking. Sparkling sugar is available from King Arthur Flour and Bob' Red Mill . I've found instructions to DIY sparkling sugar at the blog Two Sisters Crafting. The original cake uses fresh lemon zest, I opted for lemon oil. Use a good quality lemon oil. If you can't find it locally, it can be ordered from LorAnn Oils or Boyajian . Order the larger bottle and store in the refrigerator.
stand mixer or electric hand held mixer and large mixing bowl
2 medium size loaf pans
small bowl to mix dry ingredients
small sauce pan for making the syrup
14 oz all purpose flour (3 cups)
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp Kosher salt
8oz margarine I used Earth Balance baking sticks. (1cup)
14 oz sugar (2 scant cups)
4 extra large eggs
1 Tbsp lemon oil
6 oz c non-dairy "milk" (e.g. almond, soy or rice), soured with 2 tsp white vinegar
1 tsp good quality vanilla extract or Buttery Sweet Dough Emulsion from LorAnn Oils
1/3 c sugar
1/3 c fresh lemon juice (don't use bottled juice)
2-3 Tbsp sparkling sugar
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees (330 degrees in a convection oven). Grease and flour 2 medium sized loaf pans. "Sour" the "milk" by mixing with vinegar
2. Sift or mix flour, salt, baking soda, baking powder in a small bowl
3. Beat the margarine and sugar until light and fluffy (4-5 minutes)
4. Beat the eggs one at a time into the sugar-butter mixture
5. Combine the lemon oil with the "soured" milk
6. Add the "milk" and dry mixture alternately to the butter, continue slowly mixing , ending with the flour. Mix only until blended.
7. Using a spatula , divide the batter between the two prepared pans
8. Shake the pan to even out and sprinkle the sparkling sugar over the top of the batters
9. Bake in the middle of the oven for about 45-55 minutes (start checking for doneness and rich color after 40 minutes)
10. While the cake is in the oven, prepare the lemon syrup by squeezing fresh juice, mixing with sugar and bring to a slow boil. Shut off and set aside.
11. When the cakes are finished, leave the cake in the pans, place the pans on the racks and pour 1/2 of the hot syrup over each of the cakes. Cool the cakes completely before removing from the pans. The top of the cake will remain sparkly and shiny from the sparkling sugar.
12. Wrap the cakes loosely. They will stay well, covered, at room temperature for 2-3 days. Otherwise, double wrap the cakes and freeze up to 4 weeks.
Serving suggestion: slice thinly, serve with vanilla ice cream or frozen non-dairy dessert.
Another loaf cake you make like to try: Double Chocolate "Sour Cream" Loaf Cake