Lemon juice and grated rind zest up this simple poppy-seed cake, made extra moist with a touch of olive oil.
Back in the day all recipes were done by hand, so it’s fine if you don’t have an electric mixer. It will take a bit more time, but you get a nice arm workout!
Don’t have a 9x5 inch loaf pan? You can use an 8 inch square pan instead. Be sure to monitor the baking time! Start by testing the cake at 30 minutes to check doneness.
If you glaze your cake on a serving dish, tuck strips of wax paper beneath the edges to keep the plate clean and remove when set. Or glaze it on a wire rack, with paper underneath, to let the excess drip off.
Wow, you’ve got some beautiful ingredients! Once you’ve unpacked your Red Velvet kit, preheat oven to 325°F. Take 4 eggs out of your refrigerator. Using a vegetable peeler, remove the rind of the lemons, avoiding the white pith. Mince 3/4 of the rind so the pieces resemble tiny beads (or use a cheese grater). Slice the remaining rind into long, thin strips. Save these to garnish the cake in step 6.
Using a juicer (or your hands), squeeze both lemons over a small bowl to make 1/2 cup of juice. Reserve 2 tablespoons of juice for the glaze in step 6. Using your fingers, grease a loaf pan with 1 tablespoon or less of butter provided.
In a large bowl, melt the remaining butter in the microwave in 10 second increments. Then add the granulated sugar, lemon juice, lemon zest, vanilla extract, and the olive oil. Add all 4 eggs and whisk until fully incorporated.
In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, salt, and poppy seeds. Using a spatula, add the flour-poppy mixture to the butter-sugar-egg mixture and whisk until combined, being careful not to overmix.
Pour into greased baking pan and bake for 55 to 60 minutes, or until the edges are golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove from oven, let cool for 10 minutes in the pan, then invert and cool on a wire rack. Tip: if you plan to glaze the cake on the wire rack, place non-stick paper below to catch any excess. If you plan to glaze on a serving dish, transfer the cake to the dish once it has cooled completely.
In a medium bowl, combine confectioner’s sugar and the reserved lemon juice. Whisk until completely smooth and thick. It should be pourable, with a similar consistency to honey. Pour the mixture over the cake and let it set. (You may have enough glaze to do this twice.) Garnish with strips of lemon zest.