Lemon Sheet Cake

OK so I had a bunch of lemons left over after making the Lemon Curd Thumbprint Cookies that I posted earlier. I was trying to decide what to do with them when I came across this recipe. I modified it slightly, changed the frosting from a simple lemon glaze to a cream cheese/butter frosting. It’s quick and easy to make and serves a lot of people. Enjoy!

 

Lemon Sheet Cake

Cake:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, at room temp
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1 lemon, juiced and zested
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 tsp real vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup sour cream

Frosting:

  • 1 stick unsalted butter, at room temp
  • 8 oz cream cheese, at room temp
  • 2 tbsp. lemon juice (or Limoncello)
  • 1 cup powdered sugar

Directions:

Preheat your oven to 350° and spray a cookie sheet with raised sides with non-stick cooking spray.

In a medium bowl sift together the flour, cornstarch, baking powder & soda, salt, and the zest of 1 lemon.

In a stand mixer, fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Lower the speed and add the eggs one at a time until combined. You’ll need to scrap down the bowl at least once. Add in the vanilla.

Combine the buttermilk, sour cream, and 2 tbsp. of lemon juice. If you have extra save it, you can use it in the frosting.

Add the flour mixture and buttermilk mixture, alternating between the two. Beat until smooth. Pour the batter onto your cookie sheet and bake for 22 – 25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean. Allow to cool completely.

In a stand mixer, fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the butter and cream cheese until smooth. Turn down the speed and slowly add in the lemon juice or Limoncello. You’ll need to scrap down the sides. Beat until smooth again. Turn down the speed and add in the powdered sugar about 1/4 a cup at a time. Once the sugar is incorporated, turn it up and beat it until it’s light and fluffy. Spread it over the top of your cake, cut it, and enjoy!

 

Lemon Curd Thumbprint Cookies

I came across this recipe and it interested mostly because I have lemon curd on hand frequently. If you follow this blog, you know I use it in several recipes I’ve already posted. My Limoncello Tiramisu and Limoncello Cake both use it and you’ll want to check them out if you plan on making these as that’s where you will find the recipe for my lemon curd. Or you can get store bought. They were a big hit at work. Enjoy!

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Lemon Curd Thumbprint Cookies

  • 2 sticks unsalted butter, at room temp
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 1 lemon, juiced and zested
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup lemon curd (see recipe links above)

Directions:

Pre-heat your oven to 350° and line 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper.

In a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add in the egg yolks one at a time, beating again until fluffy. Add in the lemon zest and juice, should be about 2 tbsp. of juice.

In a medium bowl shift together the flour and salt. Turn the mixer to low and beat in the flour until combined. Shape the dough into balls, about 1 tbsp. of dough will do. Place on the cookie sheets at least 1″ apart. Take you thumb and push down in the middle of each ball to form a well, this is where the curd will go. Bake about 20 minutes or until the sides barely start to turn brown. Remove from the oven and fill the centers with lemon curd, it’s take less than a tsp. Return to the oven and bake for another 2 minutes. Allow to cool and then dust lightly with powdered sugar (optional).

Triple Lemon Cupcakes

I must say these were a huge hit at my work. I have quite a few lemon loving coworkers it turns out. I think they turned out really well but the lemon cream cheese frosting needs a little work. It was a little too soft for my liking. Enjoy!

Triple Lemon Cupcakes

Filling:

  • 3 egg yolks
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3 tbsp. flour
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 lemon, juiced and zested
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 tbsp. unsalted butter, melted

Cupcakes:

  • 1 cup unsalted butter, at room temp
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 lemons, juiced
  • 4 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp lemon extract
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour

Frosting:

  • 1 8oz package cream cheese, at room temp
  • 1/2 cup lemon filling
  • 2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/2 tsp lemon extract

Directions:

In a small saucepan over low heat, whisk together all of the ingredients. Turn up the heat to medium and cook, stirring constantly, until the filling is smooth and thick. About 7 minutes. Remove from heat and pour through a strainer to get out any lumps. Allow to cook completely. If you’re going to put it in the refrigerator, place a sheet of plastic wrap on the surface of the filling to prevent a “skin” from forming.

Heat your oven to 375° and line 2 muffin tins with cupcake liners.

In a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. You’ll have to scrap down the sides at least once. Add in the eggs one at a time and continue to beat until smooth. Add in the lemon juice and lemon extract and again beat until smooth.

In a medium bowl sift together the flour, salt, and baking powder. Turn the mixer down to low and slowly add in the flour mixture. Beat until smooth. Divide the batter between the cup cake tins, filling about 1/2 way.

Bake for 15-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean. Allow to cool completely.

Once cool, take a paring knife and cut out the core of each cupcake being careful to not go through the bottom of the cupcake itself. Use a piping bag and fill in the center of each cupcake with the lemon filling.

In a medium bowl, beat the cream cheese until smooth. Add in the extract and left over lemon filling, should be about 1/2 a cup. Beat until smooth. Slowly add in the powdered sugar, continue beating until smooth. Refrigerate for about 15 minutes before frosting so it can set. Frost and eat.

Cream Cheese Drop Cookies

This recipe comes from my Farmer’s Journal Country Cookbook. I didn’t do much modification to it. Add a little lemon extract and extra cream cheese, that’s about it. Enjoy!

Cream Cheese Drop Cookies

  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter, at room temp
  • 4 oz cream cheese, at room temp
  • 2 cups sifted powdered sugar, divided
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice, zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 tsp real vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp lemon extract
  • 2 cup sifted cake flour*

Directions:

On medium speed in a stand mixer, with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and cream cheese until smooth. Turn down to low and slowly add in 1 cup of powdered sugar and beat until smooth again. Combine the lemon juice, vanilla, and lemon extract. Slowly add it into the butter/cream cheese mixture. Once it’s smooth again, slowly add in the flour and lemon zest.

Of note here, cake flour is different from other types of flour and you can’t substitute. Cake flour has a lower protein content. You can make your own with all-purpose flour and either arrowroot or corn starch.

Once it’s all combined drop about a teaspoon of dough, roughly 2″ apart, on a parchment-lined cookie sheet. Bake for 25 minutes or until set. These won’t look done but they will be. You don’t want them brown. While still hot roll in the remaining powdered sugar and allow to cool.

Lemon Chicken Soup

So I was talking to a friend and for some reason Greek food came up. He mentioned this recipe and I was intrigued. So I turned to my friend Google and looked up several versions before deciding on this one. I’d say the only change I made was to up the garlic and ditch the spinach. Don’t get me wrong, I love spinach, but not in my soup. And I almost always have shredded chicken in the freezer, left over from rotisserie chicken usually. Really the only thing I had to go out and buy was the orzo pasta.  It turned out delicious and was super easy to make. Enjoy!

Lemon Chicken Soup

  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 3 carrots, peeled and diced (about 1 cup)
  • 1/2 yellow onion, diced
  • 5-8 cloves of garlic, diced
  • 8 cups of chicken stock
  • 1 cup orzo pasta
  • 2-3 cups of shredded chicken
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 2 lemons, juiced (about 1/2 cup)
  • 1 tsp salt (or to taste)
  • 1 tsp black pepper (or to taste)
  • 1 package of fresh dill, finely chopped

Directions:

I used my Instant Pot for this but if you don’t have one you can just a regular soup pot. On medium heat, or the sauté mode for the Instant Pot, cook the carrots, onion, and garlic in the olive oil with about half the salt for about 10 minutes or until softened. Be careful not to burn the garlic. Once softened, add the chicken stock and bring to a simmer. Add in the orzo and cook for another 2-3 minutes. Add in the chicken (if it’s frozen even better).

Now beat together the eggs and lemon juice. Add a ladle full of the chicken stock mixture at a time, beating it into the egg lemon mixture. The idea here is to slowly bring the egg mixture up to temperature before adding it into the soup. This will prevent the eggs from scrambling and you’ll have a silky, creamy soup base. Once you’ve incorporated 4-5 ladle full pour it into the soup while slowly stirring. Add salt & pepper to taste. Add in the dill and cook for another 10 minutes or until the orzo is completely cooked.

This soup reheats very well but you may need to add a little more stock or water as the orzo can soak up a lot of moisture.

Lemon Garlic Halibut

Like a lot of people, I am trying to include more fish in my diet. I came across this recipe on the internet and it looked good. The original called for Cod but I prefer Halibut instead. I upped the garlic and ditched the parsley. It turned out pretty tasty but next time I’ll increase the amount of spice as it wasn’t as favorable as I had hoped it would be. But then it’s hard to compete with the garlic and lemon. Enjoy!

Lemon Garlic Halibut

  • 2-4 8oz Halibut fillets
  • 5-8 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 lemon juiced
  • 5 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp kosher or sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper

Directions:

Preheat your oven to 400°.

Mix the lemon juice, olive oil, and melted butter in a shallow bowl.

Mix the flour, spices, and salt in another shallow bowl.

In a frying pan that is oven proof, heat the vegetable oil on medium-high heat. Pat dry the fish fillets. Dip them in the lemon oil mixture and then into the flour mixture. Shake off any excess flour. Add the fish to the skillet and brown on each side, about a minute per side.

Add the minced garlic to the remaining lemon mixture and drizzle over the fish. Put in the oven for 10 minutes. Serve with rice or couscous.

Lemon Tea Bread

I got this recipe from that country cookbook my mom gave to me years ago. Even though it’s called bread this is more like a pound cake. Delicious, light, and a good lemon flavor. I only modified it slightly, added a little lemon extract and some other things. It originally called for walnuts too but I didn’t think that would go well with lemon. Enjoy!

Lemon Tea Bread

Bread:

  • 1/3 cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 tsp almond extract
  • 1 tsp lemon extract
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 lemon, juice and zest

Glaze:

  • 2/3 cup powdered sugar
  • Juice of above lemon
  • 1/4 tsp cream of tartar

Directions:

Preheat your oven to 325°.

In a medium bowl beat together the butter and sugar. Add in the eggs one and a time and beat until smooth.

In another bowl sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Add in the zest of the lemon.

In a small bowl or measuring cup; beat together the eggs, extracts, and milk.

Alternating, add in the flour and milk a little at a time. Beat until just combined.

Spray and line a loaf pan with parchment paper and non-stick cooking spray. Pour in the batter. Bake for 70 minutes. A toothpick inserted in the middle should come out clean.

Allow to cool slightly, about 10 minutes. In a small bowl whisk together the lemon juice, powdered sugar, and cream of tartar. Pour over the loaf, it will soak in. Eat.

 

Lemon Polenta Cake with Almonds

The inspiration for this recipe came from Jamie Oliver’s show on PBS. I liked it because it’s 1) quick and 2) gluten free. He made his with blood oranges, which I may try sometime in the future, but I had lemons handy and coworkers who love them. So I mixed it up a bit and changed out the syrup that goes along with it. Enjoy!

Lemon Polenta Cake with Almonds

Cake:

  • 14 tbsp. unsalted butter, at room temp
  • 1 cup sugar, brown or sugar in the raw if you have it
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 tsp real vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups almonds, finely chopped
  • 3/4 cup polenta
  • 2 lemons, zested
  • 1 tsp lemon extract
  • 1 tsp baking powder

Syrup:

  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 cup honey
  • 1 lemon, juiced and zested
  • 1/2 cup sugar

Directions:

Preheat your oven to 325° and line a 8″ springform pan with parchment paper, spraying it with non-stick spray.

In a large bowl, or stand mixer, beat together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, until combined. Add in the vanilla and lemon extract.

In a small bowl combine the polenta, lemon zest, almonds, and baking powder. Fold this into the butter/egg mixture. Pour into the springform pan. Bake for 40 to 50 minutes or until the surface is light brown and a toothpick comes our clean when inserted into the middle of the cake.

Allow to cool for 10 minutes.

In a small pan, heat together the honey, water, lemon zest & juice, and sugar. Bring to a boil and then turn down to a simmer. Let it simmer until it’s reduced by half, about 15 minutes.

Take a skewer and poke a bunch of holes in the cake. Pour the syrup over the top, it will soak in. Allow the cake to completely cook before removing from the pan. Flip it over carefully, as it’s a bit fragile, and remove the paper from the bottom. Slice and enjoy!

Lemon Cream Pie

A coworker of mine LOVES lemon. She’ll eat fresh lemon every day, pretty much. So she was having a bad week and I decided to make something lemon for her to cheer her up. I had a bunch of mascarpone cheese and some leftover lemon curd. So I decided to make her a lemon cream pie. This is one of those recipes that I completely made up, which I don’t do a whole lot. But it turned out perfect. Added bonus? No baking! Enjoy!

Lemon Cream Pie

  • 6 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 5 oz package of graham crackers
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 16 oz mascarpone cheese, at room temp
  • 1 cup lemon curd (see my recipe here)
  • 2 tbsp hot water
  • 1 pkg Knox unflavored gelatin
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar

Directions:

Put your stand mixer bowl and whisk attachment into the freezer. This will help with the whipped cream.

Melt the butter in a microwave dish, about 20 seconds at a time. I usually cover mine with a wet paper towel, just in case it “pops” and splatters the microwave. In a food processor crush the graham crackers until they are fine. Combine with the melted butter and 1/4 cup sugar. Press into a pie or square cake pan, whichever you prefer.

In a medium bowl, beat together the mascarpone cheese and lemon curd.

In a small bowl, combine the gelatin and hot water. Stir until the gelatin has completely dissolved. Add into the cheese/curd mixture, beat until smooth. Pour into the pan.

Pull out your bowl and whisk from the freezer. Beat the heavy cream, starting out slow and increasing the speed as the cream thickens. When it has soft peaks slowly beat in the powdered sugar. Beat until firm peaks form. Spead on top of the lemon pie mixture. Chill for at least 1 hour and then enjoy it.

Lemon Bars

So one of my coworkers was quite upset when she found out I made the lemon pound cake and didn’t bring any into work. Now it partly my fault, I have spoiled my coworker by bringing in a lot of what I make and post on this blog. And to be fair, she LOVES lemons; to the point that she eats lemon slices all the time. To make it up to her, and because she recently had a bad one, I decided to make lemon bars. This recipes is a slightly modified version of the America’s Test Kitchen’s version. To be honest, while it turned out, I’ll probably double the recipe the next time I make it. I thought the bars were really thin. Enjoy!

Lemon Bars

Crust:

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 lemons, zested & juiced

Filling:

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 tbsp. all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp cream of tartar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 6 eggs, 3 whole and 3 yolks only
  • 4 lemons, zested and juiced
  • 4 tbsp. unsalted cutter, cut into pieces (about 8)
  • Powdered sugar for dusting (optional)

Directions:

Preheat your oven to 350° and make sure the rack is in the middle position. Make a foil sling for an 8″ square baking pan by folding 2 long sheets of aluminum foil so each is as wide as the pan. Lay the sheets into the pan, so they form a cross. Press into the pan, up the sides, and fold the extra over. This will help you take it out when it’s done.

In a bowl, combine 1 cup flour, 1/4 cup sugar, 1/2 tsp salt and whisk together. Add the melted butter and the zest of 2 lemons. Press into the bottom of the pan to form an even layer. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until golden brown, rotate after 10 minutes.

While the crust is baking; whisk together 1 cup sugar, 2 tbsp flour, cream of tartar, and salt. I do this in a medium sized pot. Add in the eggs and whisk until there are no streaks. Add in the remaining lemon zest and juice; you should have 2/3 cup of juice. It really depends on the size of your lemons.

Cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until the mixture thickens and registers at 160°. If you don’t have a candy thermometer I highly recommend getting one. Take the mixture off the heat and whisk in the butter, one piece at a time until completely incorporated.

By this time your crust should be done. Pour the lemon through a fine strainer into the pan with the crust. This will make sure there are no lumps. Bake until set, about 10 minutes, or until the center doesn’t jiggle when the pan is shaken. Let cool for at least 1 1/2 hours. Use the foil sling to get it out of the pan. I found it was pretty delicate so be careful. To get it off the foil I placed a piece of parchment paper on top and then a square platter on top of that. Flipped it over, removed the foil, and then flipped it over again onto a cutting board. Remove the paper and cut into squares, cleaning the knife between cuts to prevent sticking. Dust with the powdered sugar and serve.