Lovely lemon dessert
Wednesday, January 22, 2003
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In the old days, every kitchen had a soup pot simmering on the back of the stove. That's not always practical with today's fast-paced lifestyles, but we can still attempt to create the kitchen-centered home that the simmering pot encouraged.
In that long-ago era of sharing meals with others every day, no one would leave the dinner table until dessert was served. In fact, the first question children and other family members would ask as dinnertime neared was, "What's for dessert?" Lack of a sweet finale could cause tears of outrage.
Homemade desserts like lemon pudding cake, one of my childhood favorites, don't have to be difficult. It takes little time to prepare and uses everyday ingredients, yet the results are as comforting as that simmering pot of soup on the stove. This is just the sort of recipe that I hope can inspire you to keep sharing the joys of eating together at home with your family and friends today.
Lemon pudding cake
This is an old favorite of mine from days past, and a lovely light dessert. All the ingredients are mixed in one bowl, but something magic happens in the oven: The batter separates into two layers, a creamy lemon pudding on the bottom, a light sponge cake on top.
1 cup sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
4 tablespoons butter, melted
1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
Grated zest of 1 lemon
3 eggs, separated
1 1/2 cups milk
Whipped cream (optional)
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 1 1/2-quart baking dish or an 8-inch square baking pan. Get out a slightly larger pan, at least 2 inches deep, that will hold the cake pan comfortably.
Combine 3/4 cup of the sugar, the salt and flour in a mixing bowl; stir to blend. Add the melted butter, lemon juice and zest and the egg yolks; stir until thoroughly blended. Stir in the milk.
Beat the egg whites in a bowl with the remaining 1/4 cup sugar until they are stiff but not dry. Fold the beaten egg whites into the lemon mixture. Pour into the prepared baking dish.
Set the dish in the larger pan and pour in hot water to come halfway up the sides of the baking dish. Bake for about 45 minutes, until the top is lightly browned.
Serve warm or chilled, topped with whipped cream, if desired.
PER SERVING: 295 calories, 6 g protein, 42 g carbohydrate, 12 g fat (7 g saturated), 135 mg cholesterol, 187 mg sodium, 0 fiber.
Marion Cunningham, Bay Area cooking teacher and author of "The Fannie Famer Cookbook," among others, will publish her new "Lost Recipes" cookbook later this year.
lemon pudding cake recipe from the chronicle