So many of you asked about my Lemon Meringue cake made for Easter that I promised I'd do a post on it. The recipe is Nigella Lawson's from her "Feast" cookbook. Here is the link but don't be turned off by the UK measurements if you live here. If you click on this photo from my cookbook, you should be able to see the quantities in "American Speak." The process is as she described. (If you can't, let me know!)
It is remarkably easy and not nearly so fussy as it looks.
You'll begin with making a very stiff batter that is spread onto parchment into an 8"pan. I used a springform which made it very easy to remove, but I suspect with good parchment and greasing regular pans would be fine. Since I only had one 8" springform pan, I had to do the baking in two batches which took more time. Otherwise, piece of cake, so to speak.
You divide the batter recipe in half to spread -- and it looks very thin but Nigella tells us not to panic! And it does spread. Barely, but it's fine in the end.
Then you'll make a meringue which will be spread over the batter. Time to bake. Check Nigella's link for timing. When you spread the meringue, make one pan with a fairly smooth spread, the other more "peaky" and pretty (this will be your top)
After they cool you get to the fun part!
Put the "flat" meringue layer "upside down" on your cake plate and spread a layer of lemon curd (I bought some good curd at the store but homemade would be even better!), then a layer of whipped cream and then top it with the final cake layer -- pretty side up! (I'm not sure how well the full cake would "travel" or "rest" so for Easter I put the bottom together as below but not with the whipped cream. Then shortly before serving, I put the whipped cream layer and "topped" it with the other cake to keep the whipped cream fresh.)
It really doesn't need it but my meringue got a little browner than I had wished so using lemon curd as "glue," I stuck some raspberries on top.And since it was Easter, added some robins eggs and macarons along the side.
I was a bit panicked when I made this because I'd never done it before and didn't have much of a back-up Easter dessert plan (apart from candy and the Trader Joe macarons, which are a pretty good substitute for the real thing!). I'd already decided if it didn't work I would scoop it into champagne glasses or dishes. I didn't need to -- but it was great serving that way for leftovers!
I think you could also make it as an individual "cake," outlining ramekin-sized circles on parchment and spreading the cake and meringue within the circles. I don't THINK the cake batter would spread and I'm not sure how cooking time would change but it might be worth a try. Then assemble individually. could be interesting -- but who knows?
And would I make it again? You bet!
This post is linked to Thoughts of Home on Thursday and Talk of the Town. Check out other fun links and get loads of inspiration at both of these sites!
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