i've often heard people say the cliche "when life gives you lemons, make lemonade." heck, i've even used it myself! who really does this though? so, i decided to take something cliche and turn it into something practical.
when life gives you lemons, make pound cake!
after spending eighteen months pouring over every little crevice of creating the perfect wedding, the BIG day finally came...and went. while it was better than we'd ever have dreamed, happier than we knew possible and worth every moment of hard work, it left one craft-craving, directionless girl in it's wake. you see, when you spend so much time creating, revising, designing and envisioning one culminating event, you tend to lose sight of so much else. i'm guilty. once the buzz of the wedding began fading away and there wasn't any need for me to run to the local craft store, i felt lost. until, baking and blogging tapped on my shoulder...
with the most extensive cook book at my disposal, the internet, i took to the virtual streets in search of a lemon pound cake recipe. over the years, i've noticed that lemon cake is a common denominator in sweets. from chocolate fans to those who'd rather skip dessert for something more savory, a slice of lemon cake is rarely passed over. therefore, i wanted this to be one recipe i could perfect for a lifetime of happy tasters.
trusting those that bake and cook as their livelihood, i found this recipe from the food network's ina garten:
http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ina-garten/lemon-cake-recipe/index.html . i followed it (almost) word for word.
last week, when i baked the strawberry cake, i was forced to use my handheld mixer in place of an upright with a paddle attachment. at the time, i thought this was partly to blame for the density of that cake. i wanted this lemon cake to be rich, moist and a lemony sponge. luckily, my kitchen-friendly friend, emily, let me borrow her awesome mixer to get my baking under way. i can't thank her enough because i believe it made a huge difference this time around.
zested lemons, squeezed lemons with my new apparatus, sifted, sifted some more, blended, beat, poured...then to the oven it went. my fingers were crossed tighter than someone's puckered lips after putting a lemon to their mouth.
in their raw form, lemons are sour and few people enjoy them without the aid of some water or sugar to dilute their punch. once juxtaposed with just the right amount of sweetness, they taste refreshing, cleansing and like a little bite of sunshine.
when the cake was ready to pull from the oven, i held my breath as i turned the bundt pan upside down. unlike last week, it was a clean fall and a beautiful cake stared back at me. one trick i implored that ms. garten didn't mention in her recipe was to poke holes with a wooden skewer all over the cake before pouring the juices on top of it. i'm so glad that those who came before complained about this in their blogs and found this to be a great trick through trial and error.
once the glaze was on, i couldn't resist having a piece before it even made it to the pretty plate. this was close-my-eyes-to-really-focus-on-the-taste kinda yumminess. my husband concurred and we definitely had dessert before dinner without one bit of guilt.
thank you lemon pound cake for turning my souring spirit in the creativity department into something so sweet.