Lemon Bee Hive Cake Recipe
This cake is tasty not only because of the lemon but because of the charming old-fashioned bee hive, or skep, cake form. My beekeeping friend David's wife Gina made this and said you can make two cakes and glue them together with icing to serve standing. Instead, she shared one of the cakes with me, along with the recipe:
Lemon Bee Hive Cake Recipe
For the cake:
- • 2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
- • 1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
- • 1/2 tsp. salt
- • 16 Tbs. (2 sticks) unsalted butter
- • 1 2/3 cups granulated sugar
- • 3 tsp. lemon zest
- • 4 eggs, lightly beaten
- • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- • 2/3 cup milk
- • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
For the glaze:
- • 1/2 cup honey
- • 1 1/2 Tbs. fresh lemon juice
- • 1/4 tsp. salt
For the royal icing:
- • 1 cup confectioners' sugar, sifted
- • 2 to 3 tsp. milk
- • Sugar honeybees for decorating (optional)
Have all the ingredients at room temperature.
Position a rack in the lower third of an oven and preheat to 325°F. Grease and flour a beehive cake pan; tap out excess flour.
To make the cake, over a sheet of waxed paper sift together the flour, baking powder and salt; set aside.
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the flat beater, beat the butter on medium speed until creamy and smooth, about 1 minute. Add the granulated sugar and lemon zest and continue beating until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes, stopping the mixer occasionally to scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the eggs a little at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in the vanilla just until incorporated, about 30 seconds.
Reduce the speed to low and add the flour mixture in three additions, alternating with the milk and beginning and ending with the flour. Beat each addition just until incorporated, stopping the mixer occasionally to scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the lemon juice and beat for 30 seconds.
Spoon the batter into the prepared pan, spreading the batter so the sides are higher than the center. Bake until the cake begins to pull away from the sides of the pan and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 55 to 60 minutes. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let the cake cool in the pan for 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, make the glaze: In a small saucepan over medium heat, stir together the honey, lemon juice and salt and bring just to a simmer, about 2 minutes. Remove from the heat.
Tap the cake pan gently on a work surface to loosen the cake. Set the rack over a sheet of waxed paper, invert the pan onto the rack and lift off the pan. Using a pastry brush, brush the warm cake with the glaze. Let the cake cool completely, at least 2 hours.
Drizzle royal icing over the top.