Lemon Poppy Seed Pound Cake
Zingy lemon poppy seed pound cake bursting with lemony flavor, crunchy poppy seeds, and drizzled with a scrumptious lemon glaze. This melt in your mouth pound cake is the perfect accompaniment for your morning tea. You can even serve a slice of this pound cake with some thick and creamy lemon curd spooned on top for a wonderful dessert. If you are a fan of a zingy lemon pound cake, this recipe is for you! It has two extra doses of lemon flavor. After it is baked a lemon syrup is brushed all over the warm loaf. The syrup soaks into the loaf giving it an intense lemon flavor and helps keep it super moist. But I didn’t stop there! Once the loaf is completely cool a simple lemon glaze is drizzled over the top and sides of the loaf. This incredible pound cake makes the perfect gift for family and friends, but is so delicious, you won’t want to share! Might as well make two loaves!
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Lemon Poppy Seed Pound Cake
- 16 (2 sticks) tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 ½ cups cake flour (6 ounces)
- 1/3 cup poppy seeds
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon table salt
- 1 ¼ cups granulated sugar (8 3/4 ounces)
- 2 tablespoons grated lemon zest plus 2 teaspoons juice from 2 medium lemons
- 4 large eggs
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1/3 cup sugar
For the Lemon Glaze:
- 1 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
- 2 to 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease bottom and sides of one 9 x 5-inch loaf pans; dust with flour, tapping out excess.
- In medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt; set aside.
- In a small bowl, toss 1 tablespoon of the flour mixture and poppy seeds together, set aside.
- In a microwave-safe bowl, microwave butter, covered with plastic wrap, at full power until melted, 1 to 2 minutes. Whisk melted butter thoroughly to reincorporate any separated milk solids.
- In the bowl of a food processor fitted with the metal blade, process sugar and zest until combined, about five 1-second pulses. Add lemon juice, eggs, and vanilla; process until combined, about 5 seconds. With machine running, add melted butter through feed tube in steady stream (this should take about 20 seconds). Transfer mixture to large bowl. Sift flour mixture over eggs in three steps, whisking gently after each addition until just combined. Fold poppy seed mixture into batter after flour is incorporated.
- Pour batter into prepared pan and bake 15 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees and continue to bake until deep golden brown and skewer inserted in center comes out clean, about 35 minutes, rotating pan halfway through baking time. Cool in pan for 10 minutes, then turn onto wire rack.
- While the loaf is cooling, make the lemon syrup in a small saucepan over medium heat. Stir together the lemon juice and sugar until the sugar is completely dissolved. Once dissolved, continue to cook for 3 more minutes. Remove from the heat; set aside.
- Use a toothpick to poke holes in the tops and sides of the warm loaf. Brush the top and sides of the loaf with the lemon syrup. Let the syrup soak into the cake and brush again. Let the cake cool completely.
- To make the lemon glaze, in a small bowl, whisk together the confectioners’ sugar and 2-3 tablespoons of the lemon juice. The mixture should be thick but pourable. Add up to another tablespoon of lemon juice if the mixture is too stiff. Pour the lemon glaze over the top of each loaf and let it drip down the sides. Let the lemon glaze harden, about 15 minutes, before serving.
Yields: 1-9×5 pound cake
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Bake Time: 50 minutes
Source: adapted from Cook’s Illustrated, March 2002