Sweet Citrus: Pink Lemon Pound Cake

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By Catherine Holland By Catherine Holland
By Catherine Holland By Catherine Holland
By Catherine Holland By Catherine Holland
By Catherine Holland By Catherine Holland
By Catherine Holland By Catherine Holland

PHOENIX -- The citrus is ripe here in the Valley of the Sun. Its time to put those lemons to good use.

The new food editor of Phoenix Home & Garden Magazine shares her version of a buttery, dense pound cake with a bright citrus flavor.

When it comes to calories, classic pound cake has a bad reputation especially among those gearing up for swimsuit season.

Thankfully, Chef Sydney Dye is sharing a lighter version with the juice of a pink lemon. She also says oranges will work for this recipe.

It's featured on page 62 of the February 2013 edition of Phoenix Home & Garden Magazine.

Pink Lemon Pound Cake

1 1/3 cups unsalted butter, divided at room temperature, plus extra butter to grease a loaf pan
3 tablespoons whole milk
3 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
¾ cup sugar
¾ teaspoon baking powder
2 tablespoons grated pink lemon zest

Glaze ingredients
1/3 cup pink lemon juice
1/3 cup sugar
2 tablespoons lemon liqueur (such as Limoncello)

Cake instructions
PREHEAT oven to 350 degrees

GREASE a standard 8.5” by 5” loaf pan generously with butter

ZEST the lemon and set aside

WHISK together in a small bowl the eggs, milk and vanilla. Set aside.

ADD the flour, sugar and baking powder in the bowl of a standard mixer. Turn on low and add zest. Add 1 tablespoon of butter at a time until completely incorporated. Slowly add the egg and milk mixture, beating on low speed. Mix until just combined; do not overbeat.

POUR the batter into the prepared loaf pan and place in preheated oven

BAKE for 50-55 minutes or until t toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. The cake should be golden brown. Remove from oven and let cool slightly in the pan.

Glaze instructions
ADD the lemon juice, sugar and lemon liqueur to a heavy bottomed 1-quart saucepan and whisk over medium-high heat until sugar dissolves and mixture comes to a gentle boil.

CONTINUE to cook at a low boil until the mixture is reduced by half and is thick and syrupy. Set aside.

RUN a knife along the edges of the loaf pan and gently remove the cake. Place the cake on a wire rack set on a sheet tray. With a wooden skewer, poke holes in the top of the cake, inserting the skewer about 3”.

POUR the glaze slowly over the top of the warm cake and let it seep into the holes and coat the top.

Allow the cake to cool before serving.

Regular lemons, oranges or blood oranges may be substituted for the pink lemon zest and juice.

Younger pink lemons are variegated with green and off-white stripes on the outside and rose-hued pink flesh on the inside.

The juice of pink lemons is delicious in lemonade, lemon bars or lemon cream pie.

The fruit itself is beautiful when used in a floral arrangement, and the peel can be used as a garnish.

Sydney Dye is a home gardener, chef and owner of First Fig Culinary Adventures in Scottsdale.