Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Lemon Pound Cake--Guest Post

Today we are so excited to have Kate from Kate in the Kitchen guest posting for us as we take time to recover from our Plates In The Dryer event yesterday.  Kate is an awesome person and a fabulous food blogger.  She has a great way of combining recipes with stories so her blog is anything but boring!  Looking for some delicious food to try?  Check out her recipe index to find all kinds of healthy stuff!  Without further ado, here is Kate with Lemon Pound Cake (Yum!)...
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My son just turned 18, so I've moved in to a much different stage of parenting, with a new set of joyous occasions. Still, the one aspect of guiding someone's life that I will never lose is wanting to fill them with healthy foods that not only nourish their bodies, but give them a mouthful of plentiful taste as well. I've learned so much in the course of his lifetime about feeding a little person, and helping them to negotiate the big world of flavors, textures and eating, and the one constant I've held through all of it is to try as hard as I can to make something that's healthy without compromising how it makes you feel when you put it in your mouth.

Desserts are a bit tricky in that regard, and I've never been one for heavy, sugary cakes. I don't even really care for frosting, which makes a simple pound cake far more desirable than a decadently coated layer cake. Still, making a pound cake is a lesson in indulgence; the traditional method was a pound of flour, butter and sugar. And of course, the taste is incredible. Who wouldn't like that? At some point, however, we realized that all that richness had a price, so cutting back made a lot of sense.

Recipes abound these days with healthier methods, better for you ingredients and yet still resound with that smile-provoking taste. This Lemon Pound Cake is one of those recipes that you can enjoy on occasion that carries a healthier profile, but if you weren't aware of that, it's dense and moist texture would never give away it's secret. I love anything with lemon in it. The scent of a freshly squeezed lemon is like instant sunshine, and with the addition of the bright yellow zest, your recipe will simply spark with it's lustrous, bold flavor. It's a delicious treat as a snack or dessert and welcomes a cup of coffee or tea to sip alongside it.

Lighter Lemon Pound Cake 
  • 1 cup whole-wheat flour 
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour 
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder 
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt 
  • 2 large lemons 
  • 1-1/4 cups sugar, divided 
  • 3 ounces reduced-fat cream cheese (Neufch√Ętel), at room temperature 
  • 2 tablespoons butter, at room temperature 
  • 3 large egg whites, at room temperature 
  • 1 large egg, at room temperature 
  • 1/2 cup reduced-fat milk 
Preheat oven to 350°F.
Coat a 9-by-5-inch (or similar-size) loaf pan with cooking spray; dust with flour and tap out any excess.
Sift whole-wheat flour, all-purpose flour, baking powder and salt together into a medium bowl.
Finely grate 2 tablespoons zest from the lemons; set the lemons aside.
Beat 3/4 cup sugar, cream cheese, butter and the zest in a large bowl with an electric mixer on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes.
Beat in egg whites, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the egg and beat well.
Reduce speed to medium and beat in milk; the mixture will look curdled.
Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the flour mixture in 2 batches, beating just until combined and scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary.
Transfer the batter to the prepared pan and smooth the top with a rubber spatula.
Bake the cake until a wooden skewer inserted in the center comes out clean, 45 to 50 minutes. Cool in the pan on a wire rack for 15 minutes.
Run a knife around the sides and turn the cake out onto the rack. Set the rack over a plate or sheet pan large enough to catch any drips.
While the cake is cooling, squeeze 1/4 cup juice from the zested lemons.
Heat the lemon juice and remaining 1/2 cup sugar in a small nonstick skillet over medium heat, stirring until the sugar is dissolved.
Simmer the syrup until slightly thickened and beginning to turn golden yellow, 2 to 4 minutes
Set the rack over a rimmed baking sheet. Poke holes all over the top of the warm cake with a wooden skewer, 1 1/2 to 2 inches deep.
Spoon the lemon glaze over the cake, poking more holes if the glaze does not sink in. Alternatively, brush the lemon glaze all over the cake with a pastry brush, repeating as the glaze is absorbed.
Let the cake cool completely before slicing.

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