Friday, March 20, 2009

Triple Lemon Chiffon Cake

I had sat out last month's Cake Slice challenge so I told myself that I have to participate this month. Interestingly in this month's challenge, we would be baking a triple layer lemon chiffon cake. This added to a number of other lemon desserts that I have been baking as well. I also found out that the 28th of March is Lemon Chiffon Cake Day in United States ... indeed a coincidence!

What I like about this month's challenge is that the recipe itself sounds so fresh and summery. Not only does the cake calls for a lemon curd filling in-between the layers of chiffon, it has a lemon curd frosting as well. I made the lemon curd and baked the cake on a Friday evening. Both were pretty simple to handle and both tasks turned out according to plan. I scheduled Saturday afternoon to frost the cake. As usual my hubby and I went for our Saturday golf game and later in the afternoon, upon our return, I started to make the lemon frosting. After putting the frosting together I even bothered to chill it for about 20 minutes just to avoid any disaster - that Saturday was scorching (extremely blue skies with hardly a cloud in the sky) and the humidity was pretty high. I should have turned on the air-conditioner when attempting to frost the cake .. this was my mistake! Once I started to put the frosting on the cake and smoothening the sides, it started to wilt on me! Oh dear .. the only thing I could really do was to keep popping the entire cake into the fridge every other 5 minutes or so. My shell piping was a disaster .. extremely amatuerish I must confess. But what the heck, the cake was delicious. I had 2 pieces in total and as my hubby doesn't eat cake, I took the remaining to office for my colleagues to taste and also give feedback. This cake had thumbs up all around, so much for a disaster turned success!

Triple Lemon Chiffon Cake
(Adapted from: Sky High Irresistible Triple Layer Cakes by Alisa
Huntmans and Peter Wynne)
Makes a 9" triple layer cake

Ingredients for the Cake:

8 eggs, separated
1/4 cup walnut oil**
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tablespoon of lemon zest
1/3 cup water
1/2 teaspoon of cream of tartar
1 and 1/2 cups of sugar
1 and 3/4 cups of cake flour*
1/2 teaspoon of baking soda
1/2 teaspoon of salt

[*1 cup of cake flour is equal to 3/4 cup of AP flour plus 2 tablespoons of corn starch]
[**equal amount of either almond oil, hazelnut oil, or canola oil]


1) Preheat the oven to 350*degrees F. Line the bottoms of three 9-inch pans with parchment paper but do not butter or grease the pans.

2) In a med-large bowl whisk together the egg yolks, oil, lemon juice, lemon zest, and water.

3) In the bowl of an electric mixer, whip the egg whites with the cream of tartar on medium speed until light and frothy. Slowly add 1/2 cup of sugar and continue to beat until soft peaks form.

4) Sift the flour, remaining sugar, baking soda , and salt into a large bowl. Whisk gently to combine. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients. Pour in the egg yolk mixture and mix to create a smooth paste. Add one-fourth of the egg whites and fold in to lighten the batter. Fold in the remaining egg whites and divide the batter among the three pans.

5) Bake for about 16 minutes or until a cake tester comes out clean. Transfer to wire racks to cool in the pans. Once cool run a knife around the cake to in order to un-mold the cakes. Carefully pull off the parchment paper from the bottoms of the cakes.

To Assmble Cake:

1) Place one layer on a cake stand. Top with a heaping 1/4 cup of lemon curd and spread it evenly. Repeat with the remaining layers. Frost the top of the cake and the sides with the lemon cream frosting.

Rich Lemon Curd
(Makes 1 cup)

Ingredients for the Curd:

3 whole eggs
2 egg yolks
1/2 cup of sugar
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon of freshly squeezed lemon juice (about 4 lemons)
grated zest of three lemons
4 tablespoons of unsalted butter, at room temp.

1) Whisk together the whole eggs, yolks, sugar, lemon juice , and lemon zest together in a medium bowl. Transfer to a small non-reactive saucepan. Gently heat the mixture, whisking until it thickens enough to coat the back of a spoon. make sure not to boil the mixture. Pour the mixture through a sieve into a heatproof bowl.

2) Stir in the butter and cover the curd with plastic making sure the plastic touches the curd. This should prevent a skin from forming on the curd. Refrigerate until cold. Then remove 3 tablespoons of curd and set it aside for the icing.

Lemon Cream Frosting
(Makes 3 1/4 cups)

Ingredients for the Frosting:

1 and 1/2 cups of heavy cream
2 tablespoons of sugar
3 tablespoon of lemon curd

Whip the cream and sugar in a large chilled bowl until stiff peaks form. Fold in the lemon curd, forming a stiff frosting.


Ramya Kiran said...

Your cake looks so good and beautifully decorated. Loved the colours and the slice..
Great job!!

Sihan said...

well.. disaster aside, the shot of the cake slice looks divine. I loved the recipe too! great job.

Sheetal said...

Oh wow! That looks heavenly.

Katie said...

Your cake looks beautiful. I love how you decorated it.

Teanna DiMicco said...

Regardless of the heat, your cake looks absolutely divine! And I think the frosting looks wonderful!

Jacque said...

Wow, it looks fantastic... like it belongs in a magazine.

I'd never know you had any problems to look at it.

Snooky doodle said...

what a nice cake! really a nice job. wish I could take a slice :)

Anonymous said...

WOW and WOW again. Great job!

Gigi said...

BEAUTIFUL CAKE! I love how you decorated it. Great job.

Anonymous said...

Wow, this is one impressive cake! It looks perfect!

Lulu the Baker said...

That photo of your slice of cake looks like it came out of a cake-baking textbook! So beautiful!

symphonious sweets said...

Beautiful cake! I love the slice shots.

Caroline said...

Your cake is beautifully decorated. I would not have known it was almost a disaster if you hadn't mentioned it.

Maggie said...

Despite your trouble with the heat the cake turned out beautiful. I love how delicate the crumb looks.

TeaLady said...

Cake looks lovely. I think you did a great job. Everyone had so much fun with this cake.

Edith said...

wish I was your colleague. drooling....

How To Eat A Cupcake said...

It's so gorgeous! I could see those pictures in a magazine! ;D

Ingrid_3Bs said...

I think your piping skills are fine! I'd hate for you to see mine if you think yours is shaky!

I love how you decorated it and your layers are so even.

Mermaid Sews said...

Wow, you did such a good job with this cake. The photos are great too. I really want to join cake slice - alas

Anonymous said...

I made this cake from your recipe and it was wonderful. Next time I think I'll just use egg yolks in the lemon curd though. The flavor of the curd was great but the texture was not as smooth as I like(that was probably my fault though). All in all, it's a fantastic recipe. Thank you for posting this!

Unknown said...

This is a very tasty cake. It is so soft and yummy my family loved this easy dessertsrecipe!

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