Lemon Chiffon Cake Recipe
- 3 large egg yolks
- ½ cup granulated white sugar
- 3 to 4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 tablespoons fresh lemon zest, finely grated
- ¼ cup unsalted butter, chilled and cut into 1/8-inch cubes
- 2 cups heaving whipping cream, chilled
- ½ cup granulated white sugar
- 1 teaspoon clear vanilla extract
- ¼ cup lemon curd (see recipe above)
- 2 cups cake flour, sifted
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon coarse or kosher salt
- 1-2/3 cups granulated sugar, divided
- 7 large eggs, separated
- 2/3 cup corn oil
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 2 teaspoons fresh lemon zest, finely grated
- 1 cup very cold water
- ½ teaspoon cream of tartar
- Place egg yolks in a heat-proof bowl. Add sugar and beat for 2 to 3 minutes or until smooth. Beat in lemon juice and zest. Set bowl over a pan of simmering water, making sure that bottom of bowl does not touch the surface of the water.
- Using a spatula or wooden spoon, stir mixture, while scraping bottom and sides of bowl frequently. Continue cooking with constant stirring for 8 to 10 minutes or until thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Remove from heat.
- While curd is still hot, whisk in cubes of butter, one piece at a time. Whisk until a piece of butter is completely melted before adding the next. Transfer into a glass container. Cover surface directly with plastic to prevent skin from forming. Refrigerate until needed. Lemon cured can be made a day ahead.
- Chill glass mixing bowl and mixer for at least 20 minutes or until very cold.
- Beat cream using the chilled bowl and mixer until soft peaks form. Gradually beat in sugar and vanilla until frosting is stiff. Remove bowl from mixer. Fold in about ¼ cup of the pre-made lemon curd. Cover and place in the refrigerator until cake is ready.
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Cut baking or parchment paper into rounds and fit at the bottom of three 9-inch round cake pans. Do not grease pans. Set them aside.
- Combine together cake flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and 1-¼ cup sugar. Sift twice until well-combined. Make a well in the center and set aside.
- Beat together egg yolks, corn oil, fresh lemon juice, lemon zest and cold water until well-mixed. Continue beating for another minute. Pour this mixture into the sifted dry ingredients. Beat on low speed until dry ingredients are just moistened. Do not overmix.
- Beat egg whites until frothy. Beat in cream of tartar until soft peaks form. Gradually beat in remaining granulated white sugar, about 2 to 3 tablespoons at a time, until all are used. Increase speed to high and continue beating until egg whites form stiff peaks.
- Fold about 1/3 of egg whites into the cake batter until well-blended and with no pale streaks remaining. Fold the remaining 2/3 of the egg whites. Divide cake batter evenly among the three prepared pans.
- Bake cakes for 12 to 15 minutes or until tops spring back with touched lightly and tester inserted comes out clean. Remove pans from oven and place on wire racks. Allow to cool cakes in pans for 5 to 10 minutes. Then, turn out directly on the wire racks. Peel off parchment lining. Allow cakes to cool completely.
- Place a layer of cake, flat side down, on a cake stand or server. If desired, trim off top to flatten. Spread with half of the remaining lemon curd. Cover with second cake layer and spread with remaining lemon curd. Add final cake layer.
- Frost sides and top of cake using the chilled cream frosting. If desired, reserve some of the frosting for piping decorations. Chill cake for at least 6 hours, preferably overnight, for better results. Cut cake into wedges before serving.
- Makes 10 to 12 servings.
- If desired, garnish the top of cake with grated lemon zest or strips of candied lemon peel.
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