My first summer blogging isn’t looking too shabby to me!
I swear I’m loving summer way more than I usually do. Maybe it’s because this is the first summer I’ve lived as an adult and haven’t spent it with my mom but it’s enhancing my baking; so essentially my summertime baking got a boob job. I really don’t bake all that often during this summer and the recent change might have something to do with blogging and it may not, but this summer I am on fire with the summer recipes. My first summer blogging isn’t looking too shabby to me!
This recipe seems like a lot of recipes but it’s also different; I love meringue and I love cake, I also love lemons pair with red berries so I figured I’d give it a try. Now when I first gave it a try it was last November for my, now roommate, friend’s graduation celebration (and if anyone reading this is in college, went to college, or is about to graduate, you know the seriousness of actually doing it). I made a layered, lemon curd and raspberry sponge cake with a raspberry cream cheese mousse filling and a marshmallow frosting on the outside, sounds great, but too heavy for summer; so how do you lighten it up, you make a pound cake of course! (Sarcasm) I opted to make a pound cake because I wanted something that would hold up to the lemon and the raspberries; pound cake is very rich and very heavy and I knew the lemon would cut through some of that richness and actually lighten up the heaviness; the raspberries were on top instead of inside as a little accent to the entire cake. I also chose a meringue instead of a marshmallow frosting for multiple reasons:
- This was not a layered cake
- It would have made the cake too heavy
- It added a nice clean touch to the cake and helped cleanse the tongue after all that richness, tartness, and fruitiness; meringue cleans that all out and gives way to the next bite.
So in general this whole thing worked out well for me, you, the blog and my roommates.
Adjustments: when it comes to adjustments, if you want to know how much your lemon curd will yield it should yield about 1/2 to 1 full cup of curd, try using 1/2 first and then adding the rest, if you feel 1/2 cup is suffice then you could use it as a drizzle after the cake is done baking or you could add it on top of the batter instead of the raspberries or underneath the raspberries. Either way is fine. You can also half this recipe no problem if you feel your loaf pan is not big enough but I would say still use the same amount of raspberries as the raspberries in this recipe are so scattered they basically make one layer, in fact, if you want to use 12 ounce instead of 6 in this full recipe, that’s perfectly fine.
In terms of decoration you’ll see these old looking raspberries in the pictures; I used freeze dried raspberries on top because they’re airy and crunchy and I had some and didn’t have extra real raspberries on hand. Once again, it all worked out because it also lightened up the recipe and gave way for another texture as well; a nice pat myself on the back moment.
Helpful Hints & Suggestions: the meringue can seem a little tricky and if you’re wary of it then I would suggest buying the meringue powder at basically all supermarkets or JoAnn’s and Michael’s and Wal-Mart, but if you really want to make it yourself then know meringues are kind of foolproof; just mix the egg whites until they form soft peaks, which basically means when you lift up your hand mixer the peak on the top of the whisk should fall only slightly to the side and the add your sugar a little at a time, that’s all. You’ll see a difference in the texture as well basically letting you know it’s ready.
Now let’s talk about some possible questions you may have on this recipe:
freezing the raspberries early: yes, I have always done this when it came to this recipe mostly because fruit has so much water in them it’s easier and better for the cake to not get soaked down so early on in the baking process if the raspberries are frozen; now this does not mean to buy frozen raspberries and use them because they actually make the problem worse but for you to buy fresh raspberries and freeze them yourself.
lemon curd instead of using regular lemons: well lemons have a lot of acid in them which can curdle the eggs and butter during the baking process, lemon curd prevents that from happening. When you use lemon curd instead of lemon juice, during the curd cooking process you’re cooking out all the acid in the lemon and the sugar and eggs help thicken the juice as well which doesn’t alter the texture of the eventual cake it will go into.
how big of a loaf pan: you want a big one, or a 8 inch round cake pan, or a 8 inch square cake pan or a 5 inch bundt cake, but you need a large loaf pan to make sure the cooking time doesn’t result in a cooked inside and a burnt outside. You can make two smaller versions of these but my loaf pan that I use was 5 x 10 inches in length and 3 inches in deep and it did the trick perfectly fine.
Alterations: if you want to use another fruit rather than raspberries I would suggest only using another berry and using the same “freeze before you bake” method unless its blueberries, then you can use as is. If you want to use another citrus other than lemon, then lime, meyer lemon, or clementines would be my main suggestions.
Ta-Ta-For-Now: this is such an awesome post for the summer and my apartment of home skillet biscuits really enjoyed it also. I think they really liked the meringue since we all act like little kids anyway but I feel like everyone, no matter the ages, would enjoy this recipe as it isn’t fancy flavors or recipes, it’s just simple and done in a great way.