VINTAGE LEMON POUNDCAKE RECIPE FROM HARRIET SACKS
In our family, recipes are precious heirlooms that are passed down from generation to generation. My mom also takes notes in our family cookbooks—the date a recipe was made, who we made it for, a little something about the memory. She says that one day I’ll inherit the cookbooks and I can look back and see the things she or my dad made me on my first playdate, on my birthdays or on other holidays.
Sometimes, we are given recipes by other people or we find recipes that we add to a binder of collected recipes that we love. Today’s recipe was given to us by my 88 year old neighbor Harriet Sacks. She’s been making this old-fashioned lemon cake for decades and she says it’s also known as East 62nd Street Lemon Cake and that famous hostesses often served it. We make it if we are not in the mood for chocolate (which is rare!). According to my mom’s notes on the recipe, I first helped make this when I was 16 months old. Her note to me says:
“You sifted and worked the mixer with great enthusiasm and focus. September 1, 2006.”
Today, my good friend, Josy, is helping me make this cake.
ZESTY VINTAGE LEMON POUNDCAKE RECIPE
Yield: 10 slices approximately
3 cups sifted all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons double-acting baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 pound (1 cup) butter
2 cups sugar
1 cup milk
Zest of 2 lemons
Preheat oven to 350.
Butter a bundt or tube pan then dust it lightly with flour or fine, dry bread crumbs.
Sift together flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
Cream the butter & sugar for 3 minutes.
Beat in the eggs one at a time, scraping bowl sides.
Add milk and dry ingredients (your sifted flour mixture) by alternating 1/3rd at a time of each ingredient.
Beat only til smooth.
Stir in lemon zest.
Pour batter into prepared pan. Make sure batter is level.
Bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour until a skewer comes out clean (no wet batter).
Let cake cool for 3 minutes then get an adult to help you invert it onto a cake plate or platter.
Make a glaze by mixing 1/3 cup lemon juice with 1/2 cup of sugar. Glaze must be used right after it is made. Brush the glaze or pour it over the cake, slowly.
Do not cut cake for two hours. The cake will firm up nicely and be easier to serve if you wait.
Dust with powdered sugar.
Decorate with organic, edible plants and flowers, like nasturtiums & pansies, mint & lavender. It is also great served with blueberries, raspberries, strawberries or blackberries.
Perfect for father's day, showers and barbecues.