Saturday, April 22, 2006
Our friends Lumi and Eric recently brought us some Meyer lemons from her mother's tree in California. The Meyer lemon, originally from China, is thought to be a hybrid of lemon and mandarin orange was introduced to the U.S. in 1908 by Frank Meyer who worked at Department of Agriculture.
These meyer lemons were ripe and ready to eat, so Hiroko didn't waste any time putting them to use. After immediately Googling meyer lemon recipes, she decided to bake a Flourless Orange and Ginger Cake, substituting meyer lemons for oranges and further modifying the recipe a little bit.
Flourless Meyer Lemon and Ginger Cake
(7 inch springform pan)
3 Meyer lemons
1 cup sugar
2cups Almond Meal/Flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1~2 tablespoon fresh ginger, peeled and chopped
6~8 pieces of candied ginger, chopped
Butter for greasing the pan
Lemon juice: 1 lemon
Lemon zest: half lemon
crystalized sugar or crushed unrefined sugar cube
Scrub the lemons well. Place in a medium sauce pan covered with water. Bring to boil, then reduce heat to simmer and cook the lemons for about 2 hours. Add more hot water as necessary when the water level gets low. Drain and cut lemons in half removing the seeds. Place them in blender or food processor to puree.
Preheat oven 375F/190C. Beat the eggs with sugar. Whisk in the lemon puree, almond meal/flour, baking powder, fresh ginger, and candied ginger, and mix well.
Butter the pan and line with parchment paper. Pour the mixture into the pan and bake for about 1 hour until golden on the top. Let cool for a few minutes while you make the frosting. In a small bowl, mix lemon juice, lemon zest, and sugar. Remove the cake from the pan and pour the frosting over the cake. Let cool it before serving.
The resulting cake was wonderfully moist with intensely concentrated flavor. We served it after dinner that evening and ate it again the next morning too...it was just as moist and delicious!
This recipe was not work intensive and was easy to make. Use as much or as little ginger as you like. We love ginger, but in this recipe, its flavor does not stand out. Its role is to simply amplify the fresh sweet, piquant flavor of the Meyer lemon (or orange) If you don't like it, omit the ginger.... the cake will still be quite tasty!