For the past week or so, we’ve had fantastic magical California paradise weather, and I’ve been working in the gardens almost all day long. Late winter veggie starts went in the ground, and one last batch of garlic. I also planted seeds for calendula, love-in-a-mist, bells of ireland, and poppies, along with the dahlia tubers I picked up at the store the other day. This fantastic triple citrus butter cake is all that sunshine and good weather on a plate, no matter where you live! The flavor is bright and refreshing, and it’s lighter than all these 15 layer chocolate death cakes that are floating around with Valentine’s Day coming up so soon. Those are awesome, but this the kind of cake that you can vaguely rationalize eating for breakfast, and those are important cakes to have in your life.
This recipe is an adaptation of the Lemon-Glazed Butter Cake recipe in the April 2009 issue of Gourmet. I’ve substituted skim milk and added some new citrus- I hope you like it!
Triple-Citrus Butter Cake
- 1 1/2 c. all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 1/2 cup skim milk (or whatever milk you have in your fridge is fine)
- 1/2 tbs. lemon zest
- 1/2 tbs. tangelo zest
- 1/2 tsp. clementine zest
- 1/2 teaspoon hazelnut extract (I was out of vanilla, you could use that too)
- 1 stick unsalted butter, softened
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 3 large eggs (the original recipe suggests bringing the eggs to room temperature, but you could also just walk to the chicken coop and get three fresh ones that never were in the fridge at all)
- 1 cup confectioners sugar
- 1/4 cup fresh citrus juice (combine 1/8 c. lemon, 1/8 c. tangelo, and eat the clementine. Or a different combination, it doesn’t matter.)
- Optional: top with confectioners sugar and jam (I used Peach-Raspberry, but any fruit would be fine). Whipped Cream would be good, but we didn’t have any when I made it.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees, and butter and flour an 8″ round cake pan, which I don’t own, so I used a glass dish…
- 2. Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt. In a separate bowl, combine the milk, citrus zest, and hazelnut extract.
- 3. If you have an electric mixer, now’s the time to get it out: Cream together the sugar and softened butter until it’s fluffy and fully incorporated (about 2 min.) Next, add in the eggs (one at a time, and mix well in between each egg).
- 4. Turn the mixer on low, and mix in the flour in batches, alternating with the milk mixture. (Make sure not to over mix the batter). Pour the finished batter into the prepared cake pan. Tap the pan on the counter a few times to get rid of air bubbles, and put it in the oven.
- 5. Bake for 35-40 minutes, or until a pick inserted in the cake comes out clean. When the cake is out of the oven and cooling, whisk together the confectioners sugar and citrus juice until it’s completely smooth. Remove the cake from the pan and put it on a cooling rack if you have one(I don’t have one of those either, you can tell I’m totally not a baker…. I put mine on a big plate with paper towel). Brush the cake with the glaze and let it cool the rest of the way.
- 6. Eat the cake! (If you’re thinking about cake-dinner menu pairings, we had fried chicken, braised kale from the garden cooked with our home-cured bacon, and mashed potatoes with country gravy, and the refreshing citrus flavor went absolutely wonderfully with all that).