Friday, August 1, 2008

Lemon Raspberry Cake

I made this cake for a family gathering at my parents’ house a few Saturdays ago. I was initially planning on making a cake version of my Brown Sugar-Hazelnut Cupcakes with Blackberry Frosting, but apparently all the supermarkets my mom went to were conspiring against us, as she was unable to find blackberries at each of the stores she went to that day (and she went to a lot just to find those elusive blackberries). I was informed of this dearth of blackberries while I was at work, and she asked what she should get for my Plan B cake…except I didn’t have a Plan B, so I was forced to come up with one on the spot: Lemon Raspberry Cake.

I had actually planned to make this cake a few months ago, but, for a variety of reasons, I never got around to doing so – I guess that’s how I came up with a Plan B so quickly.

I know I’m always proclaiming things my new favorite, but I really think this is my favorite summer cake – the white cake is light and delicate and the lemon curd and raspberries provide a bright and fresh flavor that really evokes summer. I also think this cake would be wonderful for a summer wedding – it looks incredibly elegant and its simple yet bold flavors and contrasting textures make for a refined cake.

Unfortunately, my elegant cake suffered a not-so-elegant mishap– the cake stand upon which it was resting was apparently crooked (hooray for faulty manufacturing) and so the cake tumbled off it after I had served up only a few slices. Luckily it didn’t travel too far and we were able to shove it back together (and onto a plate so that it wouldn’t fall again), but the re-assembly resulted in the top layer being off-center, which is why the photos of the slices look a little screwy. I promise that the layers were straight when I originally assembled it.


Lemon Raspberry Cake
(makes a 3-layer 9” cake – serves 20-24)

1 recipe Perfect White Cake
1 recipe Swiss Meringue Buttercream
1 recipe Lemon Curd
24 ounces fresh raspberries


Use either a serrated knife or cake leveler to trim the tops of each of the three cake layer. Use a pastry brush to remove any crumbs.

Transfer 1 ½ cups of frosting to a piping bag fitted with a large ¼” tip. [I will admit that I used a ½” tip because I couldn’t find my ¼” tip – it’s not a big deal, but, as you will see in the following photos, your slices will look nicer if you use a smaller tip.]

Place one cake layer (trimmed side up) onto a 9” cardboard round, then place the round on a cake stand or serving plate (optimally one that is not crooked). Spread ½ cup of frosting evenly over the surface, then pipe a ring of frosting on the cake ¼” in from the edge. Fill in the ring with half of the lemon curd. Arrange the raspberries in concentric circles on top of the lemon curd, open side down (you’ll probably use about 40% of the berries, but use as many as you need – you will have plenty left over for the next layer and the top of the cake). Gently press down on the berries.

Place another cake layer (trimmed side up on top of the berries. Frost and fill as directed above.

Place the last cake layer (trimmed side facing down) on top of the berries. Spread 2 cups of frosting in a thin layer over the top and sides of the cake (this is the crumb coat), adding more frosting if necessary to ensure that the entire cake is covered. Refrigerate the cake until the frosting is set, at least 20 minutes.

Spread the remaining frosting evenly over the top and sides of the cake, making sure that the surface is smooth. Put a star tip on the pastry bag and pipe a ring of stars around the base of the cake and around the top of the cake. Refrigerate if necessary, making sure to let the cake come to room temperature before serving.


rana said...

i was lucky enough to eat a slice of that cake. it was elegant, refreshing, and tasted as fantastic as it looked. it impressed a whole lot of people that day. the frosting was out of this world. yummy!

How To Eat A Cupcake said...

That looks so gorgeous.... AND tasty!

Meghan said...

OMG! you're amazing with the icing and the baking...and all things I suck at! ;)

Lemon and raspberry are two of my faves paired together!

Julie said...

That's gorgeous! And raspberries and lemon are always a perfect combination.

I'm glad I don't have to declare a favorite among your cakes. As beautiful as this cake is and as much as I like raspberry and lemon, brown sugar hazelnut cake with blackberry frosting sounds spectacular. I'd be unable to choose a favorite. I'd have to have both. :-)

Anonymous said...

beautiful roopa!

malini said...

This cake not only looks good, but tastes awesome! Alas, I am not a good baker.

jen said...

WOW! You have outdone yourself with this one! It looks SO professional and I'm sure it tastes incredible.

Corissa Peterson said...

Wow, I made this cake and it was amazing. I made two of them for my boyfriend's grandparent's 50th anniversary and I have become legend. Thank you so much for a great recipe. PS I used limes instead of lemons for the curd, but was still fabulous!

Dawn in CA said...

Hello - I'm a newcomer to your site and am really enjoying the recipes and photography. I made this cake for my husband's 40th birthday this past weekend. The cake and lemon curd turned out GREAT, but I was never able to get the SMB frosting to thicken up. It stayed "soupy" even after beating for almost an hour. :(

I had to use margarine instead of butter due to a dairy allergy, but had heard that the SMB still works with margarine. Also, I have only a hand mixer, no stand mixer. Any ideas what went wrong? Is the hand mixer just not strong enough? I ended up throwing away the batch and icing the cake with traditional buttercream instead. It was still good and looked lovely, but a bit too sweet for my taste (which is why I wanted the SMB). :) Thanks in advance for any help you can offer.

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