Lemon Raspberry Cream Layer Cake


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The story behind this cake goes as follows: Lucas has been waiting since his birthday (early August) for his birthday cake. I flew to L.A. last minute on Lucas’s birthday and was unable to attend the fiesta. No worries, Kyna insisted. Why don’t you make him a cake for the Portland marathon?

I happened to have a flight to L.A. that weekend too. (I haven’t been to L.A. in over two years and randomly was scheduled to fly there twice both weekends of which we planned to celebrate Lucas.)

I didn’t think a cake for Lucas was meant to be. But then fate intervened. This past week I cancelled my flight to L.A., which allowed me to attend the post-marathon brunch AND make Lucas a cake! I wanted this cake to be extra special so I split the three layers into three yielding a nine-layer cake.

We all agreed that this cake is the best cake I’ve ever made. Kyna said it was so good she wanted to roll around in it! Sadly the raspberry garnish didn’t even make it up to Lucas and Kyna’s place. David offered to hold/guard the cake for me while I parked my car. When I returned, the raspberries had been attacked, not guarded.

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I would definitely make this cake again!

lemon buttermilk cake ingredients.

  • 5 c. all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 2 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1 c. freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 1/2 c. buttermilk, at room temperature
  • 1 T. pure vanilla extract
  • 2 c. (4 sticks) butter, at room temperature
  • 4 c. granulated sugar
  • 6 extra-large eggs, at room temperature
  • zest of 6 large lemons

lemon buttermilk cake directions.

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and adjust the oven rack to the middle. Grease three 8-inch cake pans, line the bottom with parchment, grease again and then flour.
  2. In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt-set aside.
  3. In another bowl, stir to combine ½ cup lemon juice, the buttermilk, and vanilla- set aside.
  4. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream the softened butter and granulated sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
  5. Add the eggs to the mixer while it’s running, 1 at a time. Allow each egg to mix in for approximately 30-45 seconds before adding the next. Once the eggs are incorporated, add in the lemon zest.
  6. Turn the mixer speed down to low/medium speed and then add in the flour and buttermilk mixtures in thirds.
  7. Begin with the flour, mixing until just combined, then alternate with the buttermilk. Begin and end with the flour. Once all of the ingredients have been combined, continue to mix for 2 minutes, scraping down the sides and bottom of the bowl, once or twice.
  8. Divide the batter evenly between three cake pans. Place in the oven and bake for 40 to 60 minutes or until a toothpick poked into the center comes out mostly clean. Let cool completely before assembling.

seedless raspberry filling ingredients.

  • 12-ounce bag frozen raspberries, thawed
  • 1/2 c. sugar
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 T. cornstarch mixed with a bit of water to liquify

seedless raspberry filling directions.

  1. Puree the raspberries in a food processor. Press the puree through a fine-mesh strainer with the back of a spoon, removing the seeds. This will take quite some time.
  2. Heat the puree in a small pot with the sugar and cornstarch until mixture boils, stirring constantly. As it boils, it should quickly thicken. Stir in lemon zest at the end.

lemon curd ingredients.

  • 4 lemons
  • 1 1/2 c. sugar
  • 1/2 c. butter, room temperature
  • 4 extra-large eggs or 5 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup lemon juice (3 to 4 lemons)
  • 1/8 tsp. kosher salt

lemon curd directions.

  1. Using a carrot peeler, remove the zest of lemons, being careful to avoid the white pith. Put the zest in a food processor fitted with the steel blade. Add the sugar and pulse until the zest is very finely minced into the sugar.
  2. Cream the butter and beat in the sugar and lemon mixture. Add the eggs, 1 at a time, and then add the lemon juice and salt. Mix until combined.
  3. Pour the mixture into a 2 quart saucepan and cook over medium heat until thickened (about 10 minutes), stirring constantly. Remove from the heat and refrigerate to cool.
  4. To make lemon cream, mix lemon curd with whipping cream (I used cool whip because I had some in the fridge that I need to use).

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To assemble the cake, cut each layer into three thin but even layers using a serrated knife. Place one layer on a serving platter and top with raspberry. Use your best judgment for the amount but you will need three layers of raspberry so portion accordingly. Spread the raspberry filling from the center outward with the back of a spoon leaving about a half-inch of cake or so that’s not covered with the filling. Depending on the amount of filing you use, the filling will inch closer to the edge under the weight of the layers and some could spill out. (If that does happen, wipe away the filling.) Add a second layer and top with lemon curd using the same technique. Add a third layer and top with lemon cream. Repeat until you run out if layers (you will have three layers of raspberry, three layers of lemon curd and two layers of lemon cream.

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“Frost” the cake with freshly whipped whipping cream (mix about two or three cups on high in a chilled stainless steel bowl using a chilled whisk with powdered sugar, vanilla and a pinch of salt). Garnish with fresh raspberries and grated lemon peel.

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