Lemon Poppy Seed Cake with Raspberry Curd is light and fluffy lemon poppy seed cake with a homemade raspberry curd layer and a lemon buttercream.
If you love all things lemon poppy seed, you have to try Lemon Poppy Seed Cookies!
I told you in my ice cream post that I really don’t like my birthday and the only reason that I let my husband invite friends over for burgers this past weekend was because I didn’t realize it was my birthday until it was too late.
I used my birthday/friends coming over as an excuse to make this cake that I’ve wanted to make for so long. You guys know that I am very much against fruit in desserts but the cake just spoke to me for some reason. I think it’s because I love the lemon & raspberry combination.
This cake turned out so beautiful. I love the little black specks throughout. The lemon zest was tart and the crumb light and fluffy. The curd was smooth and a nice change from typical layer cake filling.
Ingredients for Raspberry Curd
- Unsalted butter – if you need to use salted butter, leave out the salt called for.
- Ripe raspberries – you can use frozen raspberries if the fresh raspberries aren’t looking great.
- Egg yolks – use the leftover egg whites in the cake or make Coconut Macaroons.
- Lemon juice – this adds a little brightness to the curd.
How To Make Raspberry Curd
- Melt the butter in a large saucepan over medium heat.
- Add the raspberries, egg yolks, sugar and salt, and cook, mashing the berries.
- Stir until thickened, about 10 minutes.
- Pour the mixture through a coarse strainer set over a bowl, pressing hard on the solids to extract as much liquid as possible.
- Cool to room temperature.
- Stir in lemon juice to taste.
- Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.
Ingredients for Lemon Poppy Seed Cake
- Cake flour – cake flour make for a lighter, fluffier cake. You can use all-purpose flour if you can’t find cake flour.
- Baking powder
- Poppy seeds – find these in the spices section of your grocery store. You may need multiple containers depending on their size.
- Egg whites – you can use the yolks in the raspberry curd for this recipe.
- Cream of tartar – this is going to be with the spices in the grocery store. It gets better with the egg whites to produce a fluffy mixture that doesn’t completely deflate when folded into the cake batter.
- Lemons – you will be using the zest in the cake and the juice in the buttercream frosting.
- Butter – this is going in the buttercream frosting.
- Powdered sugar – you want powdered sugar for your frosting because it gives you a smooth frosting that you wouldn’t get from granulated sugar.
- Fresh raspberries – optional, but really makes the finished cake pretty.
This cake will be fine for up to a week if covered and stored in the refrigerator. Store it in an airtight container so it doesn’t dry out.
I would bring it to room temperature (or at least take the chill off) by setting it on the counter for a while before serving it.
More Lemon Cake Recipes
- Lemon Angel Food Cake with Strawberries and Mint
- Lemon Bar Cheesecake
- Lemon Cupcakes with Strawberry Frosting
- Lemon Lime Pound Cake
- Meyer Lemon Strawberry Shortcakes
- Pink Lemonade Cupcakes
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For the cake:
- 2 ⅓ cups cake flour
- 2 ¾ tsp. baking powder
- ¼ tsp. salt
- 1 ½ tbsp. poppy seeds
- 5 large egg whites, at room temperature
- ¼ tsp. cream of tartar
- 1 ½ cups sugar
- 2 tbsp. finely grated lemon zest
- 12 tsbp. unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1 cup whole milk
For the raspberry curd:
- 8 tbsp. unsalted butter
- 1 pint ripe raspberries or 1 12-oz. package frozen raspberries, thawed
- 5 large egg yolks, lightly beaten
- ¾ cup sugar
- Pinch of salt
- 2-3 tsp. fresh lemon juice
For the lemon buttercream frosting:
- 16 tbsp. unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 2 tbsp. finely grated lemon zest
- 3 cups sifted powdered sugar
- 3 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
- Fresh raspberries, for garnish
- To make the cake, position a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter and flour 2 9-inch round cake pans. Whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, and poppy seeds in a bowl; set aside. In the clean, dry bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites on medium speed until foamy. Add the cream of tartar and increase the speed to medium-high. Beat just until stiff peaks form when the whisk is lifted. Transfer the egg whites to a separate bowl, clean the mixer bowl and reattach it with the paddle attachment.
- Add the butter to the mixer bowl and beat on medium speed until smooth. Gradually add the sugar and beat until incorporated. Mix in the lemon zest. Beat the mixture on medium-high speed until light and fluffy. Add ¼ cup of the milk and beat until just blended. Reduce the speed to low and add the flour mixture alternately with the remaining milk in three batches, beginning and ending with the flour, scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary. Beat until just blended. Using a rubber spatula, fold one quarter of the egg whites into the batter, being careful not to deflate the mixture. Once incorporated, add in the rest of the whites and gently fold in until well combined.
- Pour the batter into the prepared pans and bake until golden and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 25-30 minutes. Cool the cakes in the pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Run a thin knife around the outside of pans and gently turn the cakes out. Allow to cool completely.
- To make the raspberry curd, melt the butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the raspberries, egg yolks, sugar and salt, and cook, mashing the berries. Stir frequently at first and then constantly at the end, until thickened, about 10 minutes. Pour the mixture through a coarse strainer set over a bowl, pressing hard on the solids to extract as much liquid as possible. Cool to room temperature; the curd will continue to thicken as it cools. Stir in lemon juice to taste. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.
- Layer the rounds with the cooled raspberry curd. Once layered, allow the assembled cake to cool in the refrigerator to help them set. In the meantime, make the frosting. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and zest on medium speed until light and fluffy. Gradually add the sugar and beat until smooth. Add the lemon juice and beat for one minute longer.
- Frost the chilled cakes with the lemon frosting. Garnish with fresh raspberries as desired.
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 20 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 499Total Fat: 23gSaturated Fat: 14gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 8gCholesterol: 112mgSodium: 144mgCarbohydrates: 70gFiber: 3gSugar: 55gProtein: 5g