Lemon-Poppy Seed Cake

Tuesday Apr 04 2017

Posted in Party Recipes

Lemon-Poppy Seed Cake

When a friend gave me this cute half-size tube pan, I immediately pulled out Melissa Clark’s excellent version of classic lemon-poppy seed cake. Don’t worry if you don’t have a tiny tube pan. She actually developed the recipe for an 8-inch loaf pan.

I opted to omit her lemon glaze and topped the cooled cake with my goat cheese frosting. Click here for that recipe. I served each slice with a generous spoonful of raspberry coulis. To make the coulis, puree 1 (10-ounce) package frozen raspberries in syrup with 2 tablespoons sugar and 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice. Pour mixture through a fine sieve into a bowl, pressing on solids. Store in fridge for up to 3 days.


Butter, for greasing pan
1 ¾ cup all-purpose flour, more for pan
Zest of 2 lemons
1 cup sugar
½ cup buttermilk
3 tablespoons plus 4 teaspoons lemon juice
3 large eggs
1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
¼ teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
⅔ cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon poppy seeds
½ cup confectioners’ sugar


1. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Butter and flour an 8-inch loaf pan.

2. In a bowl, combine lemon zest and sugar and rub with your fingers until it looks like wet sand. Whisk in buttermilk, 3 tablespoons lemon juice and eggs. In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Whisk dry ingredients into the batter, then whisk in oil and poppy seeds.

3. Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center emerges clean, about 1 hour. Let cool in pan until warm to the touch, then turn out onto a baking rack set over a rimmed baking sheet. Turn cake right side up.

4. Whisk together remaining 4 teaspoons lemon juice and the confectioners’ sugar. Use a pastry brush to spread glaze evenly over top and sides of cake. Cool completely before slicing.


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