Sunday, April 29, 2012

Lemon Chiffon Cake with Lemon Butter Icing

Lemon Chiffon Cake
This week I baked a Lemon Chiffon Cake with Lemon Butter Icing.  I love the look chiffon cakes—they bake up big and tall like a sponge cake, yet are still moist, rich, and flavorful like a butter cake.  As with my last chiffon cake, Butterscotch Chiffon Cake with Penuche Frosting, this recipe is adapted from my grandma’s cookbook which has lots of variations of flavors, sizes, etc. for chiffon cakes. Chiffon cakes were popular during the 1950’s and 60’s, but seem to have gone out of fashion.

Lemon Chiffon Cake
Who knew that just like clothing and décor, cakes also go in and out of style?  This is evident when you look at pictures in older cookbooks.  The cakes pictured in my grandma’s cookbook look so different from the cakes you see today.  One of the first things you notice is that they have lots of fluffy frosting swirled all over the cake, not the clean lines that seem popular today.  Using a saying that a friend of mine likes to use, cakes of the 1950’s “look a hot mess”!  A closer look reveals that many of the frosting recipes call for egg whites, egg yolks, or whole eggs.  Interestingly enough many of these recipes are not cooked frosting recipes.  I guess there is a reason those particular recipes have gone out of style.  I will pass on the raw egg frosting recipes, but will continue to try the different variations of chiffon cake. 

print recipe

Lemon Chiffon Cake with Lemon Butter Icing
The lemon chiffon cake and lemon butter icing recipes adapted from my grandmother's 1950's cookbook.

Ingredients
  • 2 1/4 cups cake flour
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup cooking oil
  • 5 egg yolks, unbeaten
  • 3/4 cup cold water
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 2 teaspoons lemon zest
  • 1 cup (7 to 8) egg whites
  • 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
          For Lemon Butter Icing:
  • For Lemon Butter Icing:
  • 3 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 3 - 4 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 2 - 3 drops yellow food coloring, optional

Instructions
1. In a large bowl, sift together the cake flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt.2. Make a "well" with the dry ingredients and add the oil, egg yolks, cold water, lemon zest, and vanilla to the well; beat until smooth.3. In a separate bowl add the cream of tartar to the egg whites and beat until they have very stiff peaks; do not underbeat.4. Carefully pour the egg yolk batter over the surface of the beaten egg whites.5. Gently fold the egg whites into the batter by bringing a scraper from the bottom of the bowl, up the sides, and over the batter until completely blended.6. Pour into ungreased 10" (4" deep) tube pan (NOT a bundt pan) and bake for 55 minutes at 325°F and then for 10-15 minutes at 350°F.7. Invert cake and let it hang upside down until completely cooled.8. Loosen sides with a knife or spatula, then turn pan over and knock pan to release cake.9. To make lemon butter icing, blend together the confectioners' sugar and the butter; stir in the lemon juice, lemon zest, and food coloring (optional) until frosting is the desired consistency to spread.

Details
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 1 cake


Recipe adapted from Betty Crocker's Picture Cookbook, First Edition, McGraw-Hill Book Company, Inc. and General Mills, Inc. 1950.

   

34 comments:

  1. I have never had a chiffon cake, but I think I would love it!! I adore light cakes, and lemon is one of my favorite flavors. Gorgeous!!

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  2. I have to make this silky smooth icing Love it. Citrus flavor is really good.

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  3. Mmmmm, that cake looks delicious , gotta try this one .

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  4. Chiffon cakes are good, I think it's just like you said, styles change. Can't go wrong with lemon either. Looks so good. Hope you have a great week.
    -Gina-

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  5. Just gorgeous! Would love a piece right now!

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  6. Lemon such a delicious flavor. It would be nice if things, such as the chiffon cake, would come back in style...I've always loved them.

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  7. Gorgeous cake. It looks absolutely flawless. And I just love the double dose of lemon in this cake. Well done!

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  8. WOW! I love a good chiffon cake and yours looks incredible Jill!

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  9. This cake is very old fashioned. I remember having this as a little girl. You did an incredible job and the pictures are beautiful.....

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  10. What a beautiful cake. Brilliant. :-)

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  11. Jill, Taking on a chiffon cake is an admirable task...there's a real talent to blending egg whites! I reminder when my mother baked a lot of cakes, and this was one of them. You really bring back memories with your lovely recipes! This looks so delicious and comforting...thanks!

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  12. You make such stunning cakes, Jill...and this one is no exception!

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  13. what a gorgeous cake...and delicious, I'm sure!

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  14. So tall and fluffy and perfect for spring.

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  15. Your cake is so tall, fluffy and perfect for spring.

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  16. I grew up with cakes like this. I probably shouldn't admit that :)

    I could happily eat a piece of this right now, it looks terrific.

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  17. Un pastel bello ,delicioso,aromático y muy bien elaborado,felicitaciones,abrazos hugs,hugs.

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  18. I think chiffon cakes are great, and work especially well with either lemon or lime. I've never made a lemon chiffon cake, and this recipe would be a great place to start. What a pretty cake!

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  19. I haven't made a chiffon cake in a very long time. This one sounds wonderful.

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  20. I've never a made a chiffon cake, but I love the lemon flavor in this one! It looks delicious!

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  21. I am a sucker for the airy chiffon cakes! Yours looks splendid!

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  22. Jill,
    Your chiffon cake is gorgeous, but I have never made one. I sold my tube pan at a garage sale many years , ago, but I may have to go buy one. I love the lemon flavor. Beautiful presentation!

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  23. I am beginning to wonder what the standard is in chiffon cakes, this is the 2nd one I have seen that is made with a tube pan. The last one I made was in a layer pan.
    Anyhow, I love that this is just the pure flavor of lemon, a singular flavor sometimes is the perfect way to go. Your cake looks like it has that amazing texture that we look for in cakes baked in tube pans. Well done. I hope you are enjoying the weekend!

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    1. I think traditionally chiffon cakes were made in tube pans because it is easier to "hang" them upside down for cooling. My grandma's 1950's cookbook gives instructions for large and small cakes and for 10" & 9" tube pans, 13x9" oblong pan, 9x5x3" loaf pan, and 9" square pan. I think any pan is fine except maybe a bundt pan (since the pan isn't greased so it can hang).

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  24. Hi Jill ,
    That is one gorgeous cake!

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  25. Ohhh that's annoying I remember leaving a comment but it's disappeared hehe doesn't matter maybe i forgot to press 'send' i do that all the time :P This is a lovely cake! I've always loved lemon chiffon cakes...but i've never succeeded sighhh will try again thanks for sharing :D

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  26. Oh did comment dispapear again? :( I wanted to say I love this recipe and chiffon cakes but it's never worked for me sighh will try again :D

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  27. I do remember chiffon cakes, and what I remember is that they were very light and wonderful. Don't know how anything as gorgeous as this could go out of fashion. :) Love the lemon in this one!

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  28. My daughter loves lemon so I'm going to have to give this a try! My only request is that you include some kind of app that allows you to reach into the screen to taste the cake -- it looks so good!

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  29. hy, What you wrote was very nice, and really helped me, thanks for sharing

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  30. This is awesome! I love lemon flavored anything and the texture of chiffon cakes is incredible! Thanks for sharing this one!

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  31. I've just baked this lovely chiffon forum 2 year old's birthday, flavored mine with amarula, it came out lovely. Light, soft, fluffy texture, absolutely devine! Thanks for sharing this recipe.

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