Quatre Quarts: Easy Glazed Lemon Cake

Here is the recipe from our Surprise Bake Along today: an easy glazed lemon cake! It was such fun seeing everyone! This is a very typical recipe in France called the “Quatre Quarts” (four quarters) and is the same concept of a pound cake. If you look closely at the ingredients you’ll notice that the four main ones (eggs, butter, sugar, and flour) are all practically the same weight. (The flour would have been 200g as well but… with cup measures and converting to metric, it was easier to have this be just a tiny bit higher for ease of baking!)
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Quatre Quarts: Easy Glazed Lemon Cake

Here is the recipe from our Surprise Bake Along today: an easy glazed lemon cake! It was such fun seeing everyone! This is a very typical recipe in France called the “Quatre Quarts” (four quarters) and is the same concept of a pound cake. If you look closely at the ingredients you’ll notice that the four main ones (eggs, butter, sugar, and flour) are all practically the same weight. (The flour would have been 200g as well but… with cup measures and converting to metric, it was easier to have this be just a tiny bit higher for ease of baking!)

The flavor can be changed quite easily for this cake by simply changing up the type of citrus that is used. For example, blood orange would be gorgeous when it’s in season with the juice making a pretty pink glaze for the top.

The biggest tips for this glazed lemon cake: don’t overmix that batter. Once it comes together, stop mixing. Also, don’t open the oven too often while it’s baking. Let it do its thing and check when the timer goes off. Often times, open the oven too much can cause a cake to go concave in the middle.

Easy Glazed Lemon Cake

This is the simpliest version of putting together a loaf cake. Instead of whipping up the eggs and sugar until double in volume and worrying about an emulisfication happening when the butter is added, the butter is melted and whisked in to beaten eggs. Easy!

Ingredients

For the cake
  • 14 tbsp (200 g) salted or unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 cup (200 g) granulated sugar
  • 1 tbsp zest from 2 lemons
  • 4 large eggs (room temperature)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 2/3 cup (210 g) all purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • pinch of salt
For the Glaze:
  • ~20ml // 1 tbsp + 1 tsp juice from 1/2 lemon
  • ¾ cup (90 g) powdered sugar

Instructions

  1. Start by melting the butter. Set aside to cool while you prepare the rest of the cake.
  2. Preheat your oven to 350F (175C) and line a loaf pan with parchment paper (or grease it with baking spray or butter).
  3. In a large bowl, rub together the sugar and lemon zest to release the oils. Then whisk in the eggs and vanilla extract well, whisking for about 30 seconds.
  4. Mix together the flour, baking powder, and salt in a bowl. Then whisk it into the egg mixture.
  5. Carefully whisk in the cooled melted butter in two additions.
  6. Pour into the prepared pan and bake 45-55 minutes or until golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
  7. After removing it from the oven, let cool several minutes then release it from the pan.
  8. For the glaze, whisk together the lemon juice and powdered sugar then pour over the warm cake.

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