mmm, cake

Lemon Meringue Cake
This is an amazing lemon cake that kicks butt over lemon meringue pie. I scooped and converted this recipe from Nigella who makes you use yr brain by not including conversion tables in her cookbooks. Thanks Nigella, thanks for making it SO easy. And- my sister, if your reading this, I don't want to know how many spelling mistakes I have made- I know how terrible my spelling is allready!!
3/4 cup really soft unsalted butter
4 eggs separated
1 1/4 cup sugar plus 1 tspn sugar
1/5 cup regular flour
1 ounce cornflour
1 tspn baking powder
1/2 tspn baking soda
zest of 1 lemon (fairly fine)
4 tspn lemon juice (pretty much from 1 lemon)
2 tspn milk
1/2 tspn cream of tartar (good to have this around, need it when making playdough)
3/4 cup whipping cream
3/4 cup lemon curd (recipe to follow or buy that lemon powder stuff you use for lemon m. pie)

Preheat to 400 f. Butter 2 8" round cake pans (square would work and so would 9" I would think.)
Mix egg yolks and 1/2 cup of the sugar, the butter, flour, cornflour, baking powder, soda, and lemon in a food processor. Add lemon juice and milk and process again. -Nigella LOVES her processor but if it's not handy for you, I think a good hand mixer would work just as well.

Divide mixture into cake pans. It's a pretty thin layer but not to worry, spread smooth with spatula.
Whisk egg whites and crm tartar untill peaks form (please use a hand mixer or you'll kill yrself) then slowly whisk in 3/4 cup of sugar. Divide whisked whites between the two cakes- on one cake, smooth the meringue flat. On the other use the back of a metal spoon and make peaks. Sprinkle 1 tspn sugar over the peaks. Bake in oven 20-25 minutes.
Test the flat topped cake with cake-tester. (o.k- does anyone actually know what this is? toothpick, small sharp knife, whatever I can find... that's what I normally use) If it's clean, it's done. Remove and let cake cool completely in thier pans on a wire rack.

At this point I was filled with complete pride that I had actually pulled something out of the oven that looked so glorious. (Cue soprano opera music.) My mountains were perfection. You know when you toast marshmellows and there's that perfect stage they get too, that just right toasty almondy, laté colour. That colour it gets to just before you plunge it back into the coals for a "touch" more and the whole thing melts, falls apart, burns, gets covered in grass/dirt/gravel/coals/yuch. Just before that. I've learned my lesson, many a time and so I resisted putting it back into the oven for "a bit more colour" as I would suggest to any of you would be cake makers.

I made the lemon curd at this point which was surprisingly easy.
Un-mould and put the flat topped cake meringue down onto yr cake plate. Whisk the crm and set aside- not to thick. Spread lemon curd onto the sponge of the first waiting cake, then the cream and then the beutious, mountainous cake, peak side up- of course. I had some curd left over so, very carefully, I held up the top cake and was able to spread a light layer of lemony goodness on the bottom.

Lemon Curd
finely grated zest and juice from 2 unwaxed lemons
2 lrg eggs
2lrg egg yolks
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter

Beat eggs, egg yolks, and sugar together
Melt butter (heavy based pan). Once melted stir in sugar/egg mixture and lemon juice and zest. Keep cooking gently, stir untill thickened. (does not have to be spoon-stand-up-straight thick.)
Let cool before use on cake.

I poured the left over whip cream into the pan and ate it all. By myself.

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