Saturday, September 28, 2013

Lemon Tea Cakes

From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...I have a treat that I suspect will really please any lemon lovers who pass this way tonight. I found the recipe for these tea cakes several weeks ago, but postponed testing it for lack of time. I finally got to the recipe this afternoon and I'm really delighted with the results. These petite cakes are really easy to make and they're packed with flavor that's sure to please anyone who favors tart desserts. I'm also taken with their appearance. I love their spare simplicity and I'm taken by the way they glisten when light hits their simple glaze. These would be perfect for a bridal or baby shower and they are a natural addition to a table set for an afternoon or high tea. While I've seen this recipe in several places, I was able to trace its origins back to the Better Homes and Gardens website. I don't think this is a new recipe. Their version of the recipe uses shortening rather than butter and that is more typical of mid-century recipes than those written today. For the record, I used unsalted butter to make the tea cakes, which, by the way, are simply inverted cupcakes. I had anticipated the recipe would make about 24 cupcakes. That didn't happen and I ended up with 16 nicely sized cakes instead. If you are a lemon lover, I know you'll enjoy these cakes. Here's the recipe.

Lemon Tea Cakes...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite adapted from Better Homes and Gardens


2 cups all-purpose flour

2-1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

2/3 cup unsalted butter, room temperature

1 cup granulated sugar

3 large eggs

2/3 cup whole milk

1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest


2/3 cup sugar

1/3 cup fresh lemon juice


1) Grease and lightly flour twenty to twenty-four 2-1/2-inch muffin cups. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

2) Combine flour, baking powder, and salt; set aside.

3) In a large mixing bowl beat butter in bowl of an electric mixer until smooth. Add sugar and beat until combined. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Alternately add flour mixture in three parts and milk in two, beating on low to medium speed after each addition just until combined. Stir in 1 tablespoon lemon peel. Spoon batter into prepared muffin cups.

4) Transfer to oven and bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until a wooden toothpick inserted in centers comes out clean. Cool in pans on wire racks for 5 minutes. Remove from pans. Place cupcakes upside-down on wire racks set over waxed paper.

5) In a small mixing bowl, stir together the 2/3 cup sugar and lemon juice. Brush sugar mixture over warm cupcakes until all is absorbed. Cool completely. Cover and store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days or in an airtight container in the freezer for up to 2 months.

Yield: 20 to 24 cakes.

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