Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Lemon Balm Pound Cake with Strawberries

I've raved about the iPad here before, but the more I use it the more it reveals itself to be a life changing device.  It's changed the way I do so many things in my life from internet surfing, reading, communicating, entertaining myself, etc., etc., etc.  It's also proving to be extremely valuable at eliminating things from my life also.  I no longer need to buy space sucking books (of which I've purchased thousands over the years and am now giving away as I read them).  Since I've discovered the app, Blogpress, I can now blog from my iPad which eliminates the need to haul my heavy laptop all over the world with me.  I couldn't be more excited about that!

And slowly but surely, publishing companies are offering iPad versions of the magazines that I receive every month.  And Lord knows, I receive a lot!  At times, they start to take over my house because I keep the cooking related ones forever.  My niece is afraid I'm going to end up on one of those hoarder shows someday.  But because of my trusty iPad, that's now not going to happen!  So there, Charlotte!

The good news is that because I'm one of those crazy hoarder ladies, I found this recipe in an old Gourmet magazine.  It originally called for lemon verbena which I don't grow (and frankly never see in stores around here).  But I had just planted my herb garden last week and had some of this.....

.....lemon balm.  I love this stuff and used it like crazy in the summer.  I put it in my tea, in vinaigrettes, ice cream.....you name it.   So I thought it would be a great substitution for this recipe.

This was sooooo good.  Fresh, light, and citrusy.....a little slice of Springtime.  Hubs declared it his favorite non-chocolate dessert!

I'll be making this a lot this summer when the strawberries are at their peak.  They're a perfect accompaniment.

Lemon Balm Pound Cake with Strawberries
adapted from Gourmet, April 1996

For cake:
1 cup cake flour (not self-rising)
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons finely chopped lemon balm (lemon verbena works as well)
1 tablespoon lemon zest (if you cannot find either herb, add an additional tablespoon of zest)
1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
3 large eggs
3/4 teaspoon vanilla
2 tablespoons milk
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

For glaze:
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon confectioners' sugar
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

Accompaniment:  Fresh strawberries (since it's a little early for strawberries here, mine weren't that sweet, so I added sugar to taste)

Make cake:
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F and butter and flour a 1 quart bundt pan or kugelhopf pan, knocking out excess flour.

In a bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, salt, lemon balm.  In bowl of stand mixer, mix together sugar and zest with your fingers, rubbing them together until the sugar is fragrant.  Add butter and beat until light and fluffy.  Beat in eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition, and beat in vanilla.  Beat in half of flour mixture.  Beat in milk and lemon juice and beat in remaining flour mixture until just combined.

Spoon batter into pan, smoothing top and bake in middle of oven 45 to 55 minutes or until golden brown on top and a tester comes out clean.  Cool cake in pan on a rack 15 minutes and then invert onto rack to cool completely.

Make glaze while cake is cooling:
In a small bowl whisk confectioners' sugar, a little at a time, into lemon juice until smooth and thick.

When cake is completely cooled, drizzle glaze over cake and let it drip down sides.  Cake may be made 1 day ahead and chilled, covered.

Serve cake at room temperature with strawberries.

I posted this here also. Make sure you check out all of the great sweet treats here every week!


  1. How exciting! Congrats on your new Ipad.

    The cake looks and sounds so interesting. Seems like lemon balm would make it taste delish. Good job!

  2. Oooo yum!! More inspiration to buy a bundt pan!

  3. Oh what a fantastic substitution. This cake sounds like a lemony dream. I have a sweet treat linky party going on at my blog and I'd like to invite you to stop by and link your cake up. http://sweet-as-sugar-cookies.blogspot.com/2011/04/sweets-for-saturday-14_22.html

  4. Hi! I just started a blog hop called Savory Sunday and I would love for you to come and join and share one of your fabulous recipes!!


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