Wednesday, April 10, 2013

WHEN LIFE HANDS YOU LEMONS, IT MAY TAKE THREE TRIES TO BAKE A CAKE... was all a matter of principal!  Sometimes my arms aren't long enough to pat myself on the back (and rarely, if ever, do I feel the need), but I do have to admit, I can bake like nobody's business.  That was, until my friend Jackie, of ONE CREATIVE CAT, posted a recipe for these damned Lemon Pudding Cakes (props to Linda @ for the original recipe).  "Easy", she said ("VERY easy", to be exact) - why, she even had a beautiful picture on her blog.  Jackie has turned into "Little Miss Susie Homemaker", leaving the rest of us in the dust, lately - this after claiming a lifetime of not being able to cook.  Obviously a ringer!
She told me I needed Meyer Lemons to start with - who the hell has even heard of Meyer Lemons in Las Vegas?!  I'm lucky I can find anything but the plastic squeeze lemons.  I told her I would use regular lemons, instead.  She told me it wouldn't work.  She was RIGHT!  She might be a Gypsy witch!
Tried it a second time, with more determination and gusto, because SHE tried the regular lemons and called to say hers "came out just fine - in fact, they were even better, as they were more lemony".  ARGH!  I adore anything lemony - lemon meringue is my favorite dessert, given a choice.  Blah, blah, blah, Jackie - big deal!  My second go-round flopped just as horribly as the first.  I threw in the towel...until last had to be done - AGAIN!
In dissecting the recipe she kept telling me worked so well, together we hit on the fact that I keep 1% Milk in my house, and not Whole Milk, which is what most BAKING recipes call for...DUH!  I KNOW THAT!  I don't know where my head was at, but it fixed the problem!  It is a very easy recipe - ALL three times I tried it.  Get yourself some regular lemons (or Meyer Lemons, if you're so inclined) and WHOLE Milk, and try it yourself - it WILL work (I promise she only curses mine)!
1/4 C. Flour
1/3 C. Sugar
1/4 tsp. Salt
2-3 Lemons
3 Large Eggs, Separated
2 Tbsp. Butter, melted and cooled
1 C. Milk
1/4 C. Sugar
(plus additional sugar for ramekins)
Preparation Instructions:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease four 5 oz. ramekins, and sprinkle with sugar to coat the bottoms and sides. Shake out any excess sugar.  Set aside.
In a small bowl, whisk flour, 1/3 cup sugar, and salt. Set aside.

Grate 1-1/2 Tbsp. of lemon peel, and squeeze 1/2 cup juice. In large bowl, with wire whisk, beat egg yolks, lemon peel and juice. Whisk in butter and milk. Gradually whisk in flour mixture.

In another large bowl, with mixer on medium speed, beat egg whites until foamy. Gradually beat in remaining 1/4 cup sugar until soft peaks form when beaters are lifted - about 2 to 3 minutes.

Add one-third of the beaten whites to the yolk mixture and, with rubber spatula, stir gently until incorporated. Gently fold in remaining whites until just incorporated. With a ladle, divide batter evenly among prepared ramekins.

Arrange ramekins in a large (17-inch by 13-inch) roasting pan. Fill pan with enough hot water to come a quarter to halfway up sides of ramekins, and carefully transfer pan to oven.
Bake 30 to 35 minutes, or until cakes are golden brown and tops rise 1/2 inch above rims.  Remove them from the oven. and allow to cool in pan for 5 minutes.  With a sturdy metal spatula, carefully remove ramekins from the water filled pan and transfer ramekins to a wire rack to cool to room temperature.  Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.  Run knife around edges of ramekins, invert on plate and garnish.
This is Jackie's beautiful pudding cake.  Your little cakes will look like the final photo on the bottom right grouping above (or the second photo at the top of this post) when they are done baking.  When you flip them out of the ramekins is when you see the pudding topping.
My garnish came from an aerosol can...hers was "Food Network creative".  Mine were expected to flop the third time, so I wasn't prepared creatively.  Gypsy witch!


DearHelenHartman said...

My mouth is watering! Lemons can be used for something besides making daiquiris? Who knew?

Colleen Mcgraw said...

I am a BIG Lemon lover, I must have missed this on Jackie's Blog because I would have made them right away ...well maybe not right away it seems I don't have time to breath these days but I will be trying these soon Thanks Jackie and Tanya, can't wait

oldgreymare said...

my mouth has puckered <3

Jackie said...

I loved these little cakes, so moist and delicious, I love lemons. I am glad we figured out you need whole milk for custard dishes, saves you a headache and saves me from being called a liar with my pants on fire! Your cakes look great!

Dorthe said...

WOW, two in a row :-) first Dawn`s apple cake and now yours lemon cake -I could eat them both here and now !!
It looks so yummy, so good you found out what caused the bad results-I can read your friend think that too ;-)
Hugs ,Dorthe

Dagmar said...

Hi Tanya,
Looks prefectly lemony to me, they look delicious"

Mary said...

Jackie has always been amazing at making whatever she damn well wants to make. I've never seen anything she tries fail.

Now I have to add YOU to the list. You can make anything you want to make! And if it doesn't work, it has nothing to do with your skill - it has to do with the MILK! ARG!

I'm just jealous...the lemon thingys look amazing...thhbbpphhh! (how do you spell the Bronx Cheer?)

My Garden Diaries said...

Gypsy witch..ha! We totally have the lemon thing in common girl! I am a sucker for anything lemon! My gram can make a mean lemon knot cookie that just melts in your mouth! Good for you for not giving up! These look outstanding with or without the garnish on top! You had me laughing here..I will give ya a pat on the back for you! Have an awesome weekend friend! Calling for snow here tonight...fingers crossed that it doesn't happen! Peace...Nic

Elisabeth said...

Yum! Love this post, you made me giggle...gypsy witch haha :)

Kadee Willow said...

I am busting a gut over here laughing at your post.. well, no. Not laughing "at" you but "with" you! I am totally impressed with your determination not to throw in the towel. Three times baking these? Wow! And they look heavenly! Applause, applause for never giving up and showing you still have your talent for baking in your back pocket!!

Vicki Boster said...

I'm laughing so hard!! I love lemony lemon anything-- but if it was this hard for YOU-- I'm not even going there!! You do have me wanting some lemon bread though--

See you soon!!!!!

Quinn said...

I have been hearing about those legendary Meyers lemons for a few years now, but if they exist in my part of the world, I have not seen them. Thank you for having the courage (and the courage AND the courage!) to try using ordinary lemons as a replacement. They don't grow here either, but at least I know where to find them ;)