Lemon Lavender Cake

Prep Time: 90 minutes (Make the cake in two sections, then create the filling while the cake bakes)

Serves: 8


Cake: Part 1

2 Tbsp. unsalted butter

5 large eggs, separated

3/4 cup sugar

3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

1 Tbsp. lemon zest

3 Tbsp. lemon juice

1 cup cake flour (not self-rising)

1/2 tsp. salt

Cake: Part 2 (Fold into Part 1.)

1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon sugar

3 Tbsp. all-purpose flour

1/2 tsp. salt

1 tsp. lemon zest

3/4 cup egg yolk

1 Tbsp. unsalted butter

For lavender Cream

1 1/2 cups heavy cream

3 Tbsp. mild honey (or lavender honey)

1/2 Tbsp. dried lavender blossoms (available at the Healthy Home Market or other organic, whole-food suppliers. Or, use fresh lavender blossoms if available or lavender stems, fresh or dried.)


* Preheat oven to 325 degrees with rack in middle. Invert bottom of springform pan and lock on side
* Brush pan with melted butter, then chill 2 minutes to set
* Line bottom of pan with parchment paper, then brush pan and parchment with another layer of melted butter and chill 2 minutes
* Dust with flour, knocking out excess
* Beat together yolks and 1/2 cup sugar in a large bowl with electric mixer at high speed until pale and thick – about 3 minutes
* Add oil and lemon zest and juice and beat at medium speed until combined
* Sift in flour and mix at low speed until just combined
* Beat egg whites in another large bowl with clean beaters, adding 1/4 cup sugar a little at a time and beating
* Continue to beat until whites just hold soft peaks (If any oil is on beaters or in the bowl, it will stop egg whites from getting foamy)
* Add salt and beat at medium-high speed until foamy
* Gently fold 1/3 of whites into yolk mixture to lighten, then fold in remaining whites gently
* Transfer batter to springform pan, smoothing top, and gently rap against counter once or twice to eliminate bubbles
* Bake until golden brown (top will crack slightly) and a wooden pick inserted in center of cake comes out clean, about 40-50 minutes
* Cool in pan on rack for 10 minutes, then remove side of pan and cool cake to room temperature, about 1 hour (sides will cave a little)
* While cake cools, make the curd
* Whisk together sugar, flour and salt in small heavy saucepan, then add lemon juice in a slow stream, whisking until combined
* Bring to a boil, whisking constantly, then simmer, whisking, until thickened – 3 minutes
* Remove from heat
* Whisk yolk in a small bowl, then add about 1/4 of lemon juice mixture, whisking again
* Whisk into remaining lemon-juice mixture and gently boil, whisking, 1 minute
* Remove from heat and stir in butter and zest
* Transfer filling into a bowl and cover surface with buttered parchment paper
* Chill until cool, at least 30 minutes

Lavender Cream:

* Bring cream, honey and lavender blossoms to a boil in a small saucepan, then remove from heat and steep, covered, 30 minutes
* Strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a bowl, discarding solids, and chill lavender cream, covered, until cold
* Once it is cold, put into a bowl and whisk until a foam peaks
* Mix lavender cream with the lemon curd

To assemble the cake:

* Invert cake and discard parchment
* Cut cake horizontally into 3 even layers with a long serrated knife, and transfer 1 layer, cut side up, to a cake plate
* Lightly whisk filling to loosen, then spread half the filling evenly over cake layer on plate, leaving a 1/2-inch border around edge
* Place a second cake layer over filling, and spread remaining filling in same manner
* Top with remaining cake layer, cut side down, pressing gently so that filling spreads to edge of cake
* Garnish the cake with fresh lavender or any remaining lavender cream and curd