East 62nd St. Lemon Cake

This 40 year old recipe gets its name from Maida Heatter's daughter and was published in the 1960's by Craig Claiborne in the New York Times.....Saveur republished it and I am glad they did.

It seems like everyone loves a lemon dessert. How come I didn't know this? I thought everyone loved chocolate. Recently, when I asked some of my friends what their favorite cake was, they all replied lemon! You think you know somebody!

I liked this cake even better than Ina's famous lemon buttermilk cake. It was simple and lovely with the lemon glaze on top. I was so tempted to put chopped fresh rosemary inside, but since no one mentioned loving a rosemary dessert, I held back.

East 62nd St. Lemon Cake (adapted from Saveur):

3 cups sifted all-purpose flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
8 oz. unsalted butter
2 cups sugar
4 large eggs
1 cup milk
Finely grated zest of 2 large lemons

1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
2/3 cup sugar

Butter a 12 cup bundt or ring pan and then dust it all lightly with fine, dry bread crumbs. Set aside.

Sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt, and set aside.

In the large bowl of an electric mixer, beat the butter until soft. Add the sugar and beat until incorporated. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, scraping the bowl as necessary with a rubber spatula. (The mixture might look curdled—it's okay.) On lowest speed, add the dry ingredients alternately in three additions, with the milk in two additions, beating only until incorporated after each addition.

Stir in the lemon zest. Pour the batter into the prepared pan.

Bake for 45 minutes to an hour at 350F until a cake tester (my cake was ready in 50 minutes) comes out clean. Let the cake stand in the pan for 5 minutes and then cover with a rack and invert.

Lift pan from cake, leaving the cake upside down. Place rack over a large piece of foil or wax paper and prepare the glaze.

To make the glaze, mix the lemon juice with the sugar and brush all over the hot cake. The cake will absorb it. Let cool completely and then transfer to a cake plate. It is best to wait a few hours before cutting the cake.

This is sweet & tart. Pucker up and enjoy!


Joanne said…
I have to say, I would find it hard to choose between a lemon and a chocolate dessert. But you are swaying me to the lemon side with this cake!
Anonymous said…
Question - you DO flip the cake right side up on the rack placed over the foil/wax paper and brush the glaze over the TOP of the cake, correct?
Stacey Snacks said…
As you can see, I kept my cake upside down in the pan because it looked prettier to me.....but most bundt recipes want you to flip the cake on a cake stand then glaze.
There is no exact rule, the cake police won't arrest you.
Your choice!
Kathy Walker said…
Mmmm...the cake looks wonderful...I agree, the cakes look so lovely before flipping!
This looks dee-licious! I adore lemon desserts - thanks for sharing:)
Noelle Ritter said…
I would agree- lemon wins me over every time. When your friends are "on a diet, no dessert for me..." until you bring out the lemon goods... oh Lordy!

I'll be on this one, and will boldly try the rosemary for you. :-)
Ciao Chow Linda said…
I love this cake Stacey and also blogged about it a couple of years ago. It used to be one of my standards back in the 80s when I first learned about it and I love it just as much now. You're giving me the urge to make it again.
SarahB said…
I really want to make this. I'll make a rosemary glaze for it!
Anonymous said…
Upside down, flipped, inverted, I'm still confused but who cares? This is a bi-glaze-ual lemon cake, and any way you do it, EVERYBODY will be satisfied!
Verve.IS.served said…

The last picture is so stunning. There's something about the pale yellow lemon cake against the vibrant blue plate. I'm such a sucker for good photography. Awesome, awesome picture. Keep it comin'! :o)


The Food Hunter said…
Great cake and we have so many lemons right now
Man does not live my Shaker Lemon Pie alone, so I look forward to a cake-y, lemony dessert departure.
Jen_from_NJ said…
I do love a good lemon cake maybe even more than chocolate! Boy does yours look delicious! Hmmm... rosemary in lemon cake does sound good too...
Looks delicious, and totally puts me in the mood for spring!
I like chocolate but I love lemon, next time I bake a cake it will be this one!
Oui, Chef said…
I DO love a lemon cake, especially one with a really tart glaze. Most times I make it in a loaf pan, but like this dressed up bundt pan version. - S
Dana said…
When I am not sure of the taste of my company, I often make lemon. I know some people are not chocolate lovers (which I DO NOT understand) but everyone seems to like lemon. Plus lemon desserts seem to go so well after a rich meal.
The JR said…
I prefer lemon. Hubby likes chocolate.