I found this cake to be a little too heavy on the lemon oil flavor and too light on the lemon juice. The strong lemon oil could have been my fault; I never know how tightly to fill the measuring spoon with lemon zest, which affects the quantity used. Since I quartered this recipe to make a single, small loaf, exact measurements become very important. It's possible I packed the zest into the spoon too tightly, and while it would have been only a slight increase in the 3/4 teaspoon measurement I used, multiplied by 4 for a full recipe could have been a significant increase. (Does that make sense?)
The other change I made to the original recipe was to throw in some thyme, using a quantity similar to what I found in another recipe. I'm not sure I could taste it. It was very subtle.
Here's what I used. Changes from an exact quarter of the original are shown in
strikeout and italics:
5 tablespoons all-purpose flour
¼ tsp baking powder
1/16 tsp baking soda
½ large egg, at room temperature
¼ large egg yolk, at room temperature
¾ teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
½ teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
2 tablespoons + 2 teaspoons granulated sugar
4 teaspoons pure canola oil
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
Preheat your oven to 350°F; grease a 4x2-inch rectangular loaf pan. (Six 4x2 pans would normally be used in place of a 9x5 loaf pan, but since I was making 1/4 the recipe, I would have needed 1.5 pans. I risked all by using only one pan.)
In a bowl, sift together flour, baking powder and baking soda. Add cornmeal and whisk together to blend evenly. Using a whisk attachment, beat together the whole egg, yolk, zest, salt, and thyme on medium-high speed until foamy, about 40 seconds. Gradually add sugar while beating. Increase speed to high and beat until mixture is very pale and almost white in colour, about 5 minutes. The mixture will nearly triple in volume.
In a small bowl, combine oil and lemon juice. Whisk it with a fork to blend. Gently fold the flour mixture into the eggs in three additions, alternating with the oil mixture, beginning and ending with the flour. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake until the top is golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 20 minutes. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let cool completely.
This cake rose in a strange manner -- straight up, with sharp edges. No crowning or cracking.
Everyone else's loaves -- including the original -- were also fairly stout (which is why I was encouraged to overfill the pan. I wanted a thicker loaf anyway.) It might have been better with another few minutes in the oven, but it wasn't noticeably under baked. (I'm never quite sure how to adjust for different sized pans.)
Conclusion: This was good, with a nice texture. The sweetness level was good, but it would have benefited from a light, tangy glaze for a pleasant contrast.
Original recipe: Lemoniest Little Lemon Loaf via Scientifically Sweet