Citrus Cake with Citrus Curd

Citrus Cake with Citrus Curd

I have to admit that the initial motivation for making this cake was a need to use up some lemon icing that I had too much of, but I still enjoyed the end result!

Last week, I felt inspired to do some weeknight baking when I found myself with too many lemons from a friend and some blueberries that kept attacking me by falling out of the freezer. I was making this Lemon Yogurt Cake with Blueberry Compote when it went in the oven and I realized I had completely forgotten to add the lemons that I had just spent 10 minutes zesting and juicing. It was definitely too late to add them into the batter, so I decided to make a lemon icing to drizzle on top. Little did I know, but it takes a LOT of powdered sugar to make lemon icing from ⅓ cup of lemon juice, so I had a ton left over and had to find something new to do with it.

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Lemon Shortbread with Edible Flowers

Lemon Shortbread with Edible Flowers

Baking with edible flowers is not something I had ever tried before so when Betany from Chloris Floral reached out to me, I jumped at the opportunity to collaborate.

As we were both unfamiliar with this type of baking/floral preparation, it was a fun experience to try something new together. Betany is a floral designer from Sonoma County who uses seasonal, organic, local and sustainably grown flowers in her gorgeous bouquets and floral arrangements. She is also a Julliard-trained professional opera singer, and music is a great inspiration for many of her arrangements. I love music and flowers as well so it was enjoyable to spend time with someone who also shares these interests. Betany supplied the edible flowers while I figured out a tasty shortbread to accompany them.

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Lemon Curd Cake

Lemon Curd Cake

I've been holding out on this cake for way too long—since May.

This was not on purpose, though. I just got distracted by other seasonal summer things like my beloved stone fruit. See this pie and this yogurt. In summer my blogging tends to be slow. It's either too hot to make things or I'm away on weekends which is generally the best time to photograph or binging on some TV show.

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Lemon Passion Fruit Layer Cake

Lemon Passion Fruit Layer Cake

KBC is now two years old! Well, two years and a month because it's taken me a while to get to this celebratory post. 

And we'll also celebrate because I made a cake! And after making this cake, I'm not sure I'm really good at making cakes. But more on that later. 

I know last year, I said I was going to do all of these things like be better at blogging, share more and make my site the best it can be. I was ambitious about wanting to increase readership, tracking traffic and religiously posting and liking on Instagram. But lately, I am less likely to check stats and post on Instagram daily. I mean there is the daily check to make sure I had some readership and the leisurely scroll through Instagram but I think I got burned out from focusing on numbers and likes rather than the content and stories themselves. I had to let that go and accept that it was okay to not post on this blog every week and to not be obsessive about scrolling through my entire Instagram feed so I never missed a photo or get annoyed about losing followers. Okay, I will admit, getting below 1,000 again would be annoying. This year, I'm going to try to focus on posting things because I care about and like rather than wondering if this is going to be the next post that boosts my readership. 

I have found that things take time and sometimes not doing anything for a while and just letting the cogs and wheels turn is what is needed for both me and this site. 

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Yuzu Meringue Pie

Yuzu Meringue Pie

Per usual, January is dragging her feet and we have been playing this game of tug-o-war where I pull for the days 'til spring to go by faster and she pulls it the other way with days of immense fog and chilling cold.

So, I make pie.

Actually I made this in November, the week before Thanksgiving on a peaceful Sunday afternoon where a friend and I made three of these pies. We juiced a lot of yuzu which yielded so much more juice than the ones from last year and waited forever for the crust to fully bake (it could have used more time, though) and I whisked a triple of the below filling until my shoulder and bicep ached but my stomach rumbled from the tart smell of citrus. 

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Lemon Poppy Seed Linzer Cookies

Lemon Poppy Seed Linzer Cookies

When it comes to desserts, I will more likely than not steer in the direction of chocolate.

Except when it comes to ice cream. That is always mint chocolate chip

In general, I am not a fruity sweet treats person. I make my frozen yogurt concoction as chocolatey as possible, meaning that I will skip entirely over all of the colorful candies in favor of chocolate covered type things. At the end, I am always left with a deep need of water that only chocolate can do to you. During Halloween, I avoid fruity candies like Starbursts and Skittles and you will not find me pawing for lollipops or Jolly Ranchers. 

So it was rather surprising to me that when I was waiting around for my family at the library a rainy Saturday after Thanksgiving and randomly picked up this cookie book, it was the recipe for the Lemon Poppy Seed Linzers that stood out to me. Not the Chocolate Whoopie Pies or the Chocolate Chip Cookies, but the ones gloriously dotted with poppy seeds and filled with a bright yellow lemon curd. 

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Lemon Yogurt Cake with Blueberry Compote

Lemon Yogurt Cake with Blueberry Compote

In my last post, I talked about Raspberry Muffins and my disappointment in I forgetting the crumb topping.

So, to make up for it, and to appease Kristen, I made this Lemon Yogurt Cake with Blueberry Compote. 

For a while, we were in a phase of eating blueberry compote over yogurt. It makes morning yogurt seem so much more fancy than when it just has granola on it. That stopped when we started getting fresh strawberries from a fruit stand down the road. For this loaf, I wanted to try something different beyond your typical lemon and blueberry loaf cake. Swirling things into loafs is tons of fun (see here for another example), so I decided to bring back the compote and swirl it into this Lemon Yogurt Cake. You know if it's from Ina, it's going to be extra fabulous. 

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Cornmeal or Semolina-Lemon Syrup Cakes

Cornmeal or Semolina-Lemon Syrup Cakes

Often, the number one factor that contributes to me trying a new recipe is whether or not I have the majority of the ingredients to make it. 

And, if I end up making it twice in two weeks, that means I'm on to something. 

This recipe comes from the April Issue of Bon Appétit Magazine which I intermittently flip through at work for design, photography and just general food making inspiration. This caught my eye mainly because I was intrigued by the combination of semolina and almond meal but also because this simple photo of the cakes just looked too good to pass up. I've never baked with semolina flour before but I didn't have any on hand. So, to improvise, I figured subbing in finely ground cornmeal would be a good start. 

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