Berries scattered to the floor. Batter, abandoned. The baker needed a moment. And then...hope prevailed. Gone was the cream cheese icing, replaced by fondant. No lemon zest. We went all in with 2 heaping tablespoons of If & When Moroccan Preserved Meyer Lemon Paste. The sunflowers? A gift for the baker, then a cake topper and a welcome reminder of the lemony brightness within.
1 cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
4 large eggs, room temperature
1 TBS vanilla extract
3 cups sifted all-purpose flour
1 TBS baking powder
1/2 TSP salt
1 cup buttermilk
2 TBS lemon zest
2 TBS If & When Preserved Meyer Lemon Paste
1 1/2 cups blueberries
1 TBS all-purpose flour
Fondant icing (store-bought)
Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease and lightly flour three 9×2 inch cake pans with nonstick spray. Set aside.
Using a handheld or stand mixer with a paddle attachment, beat the butter on high until creamy – about 1 minute.
Add granulated and brown sugars and beat on medium-high speed until creamed, about 2-3 minutes. Add eggs and vanilla. Beat on medium speed until everything is completely combined, about 2 minutes. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed. Set aside.
In a large bowl, toss the flour, baking powder and salt. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients. Beat on low speed for 5 seconds, then beat in the milk, lemon zest, and If & When just until combined. Toss the blueberries with 1 TBS flour and gently fold into the batter. Batter is extremely thick. Do not over-mix. Over-mixing will lead to a tough, dense textured crumb.
Spoon batter evenly into 2 prepared cake pans. Bake the two layers for 22-28 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely before frosting.
Assemble: Using a large serrated knife, trim the tops off the cake layers to create a flat surface. Place 1 layer on a cake stand, add a layer of fondant. Top with 2nd cake layer. Cover top and sides of cake with fondant. Top with blueberries or sunflowers if desired. Refrigerate for at least 45 minutes before cutting or the cake may fall apart.
Adapted from the recipe, "Lemon Blueberry Layer Cake," by Sally's Baking Addiction.