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Lemon Beer Pound Cake

Lemon Beer Pound Cake

I’ve always been an adventurous eater.

I ate ants in Colombia, snake meat in Greece, mint tea made with a brown liquid I couldn’t identify in Morocco. If it’s new to me, I want to try it. I want to eat all the things, even if I know I’ll hate them. Even the few things I can’t stand, like pears, bananas, and raw celery, if you make them in a way that’s new and exciting, I’ll dive right in. Even if I know with every ounce of certainty that I’ll hate it. Curiosity rules my decision making at time. Even in the midst of my eat-all-the-things ambition, I have a true love for simple food done well.

It took years for me to figure out how to make the perfect steak, and how to cook ribs at home that taste like a southern BBQ, and how to make mac n cheese that’s creamy out of the oven. Sometimes, simple is the most beautiful.

Lemon pound cake is a simple but beautiful food. It’s perfect early in the morning with coffee, or late at night with a beer or a classic rye Old Fashioned. My main goal was the perfect icing. I wanted that thick layer that sits on top like a crown, not dripping down that side. I wanted coffee shop style icing. I figured out that a thick paste, spread on while the cake was still in the pan, then chilled for an hour gave me that gorgeous look. Although I do think this version is better for late-night-with-booze consumption than those cakes served in the morning. But it’s your call.

Lemon Beer Pound Cake -2


Lemon Beer Pound Cake

Servings 6 to 8 servings


  • 1 tbs lemon zest
  • 1 ¼ cup sugar
  • 2 tbs butter softened
  • 3 eggs room temperature
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup lemon juice
  • 1/3 cup wheat beer
  • 3 tbs olive oil
  • 1 ¾ cups flour
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp salt
  • Glaze:
  • 2 cups 1/2 lbs powdered sugar
  • pinch salt
  • 2 tsp lemon juice*
  • ½ tsp water


  • Preheat oven to 325.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer add the lemon zest and sugar. Beat for about 2 minutes on high to release the lemon oils into the sugar.
  • Add the butter, beat until well combined.
  • Add the eggs and vanilla, one at a time, beating well between additions.
  • Add the lemon juice, beer and olive oil , beating until well combined, scraping the bottom of the mixer to insure all ingredients are well incorporated.
  • Stop the mixer and sprinkle with flour baking powder, baking soda and salt, sitr until just combined.
  • Pour into a large loaf pan that has been greased.
  • Bake at 325 for 55 o 60 minutes or until cake is golden brown and tooth pick inserted in the center comes back with just a few crumbs attached. Allow to cool completely.
  • Stir together the powdered sugar lemon juice and salt to make a thick paste. Spread over the top of the cake, chill until set about 3 hours. Cake is best made a day ahead of time.
  • Substitute all of some of the beer to increase the beer flavor.


Substitute all of some of the lemon juice in the glaze to increase the beer flavor.

Lemon Beer Pound Cake -4

Lemon Beer Dream Cake

Lemon Beer Dream Cake via @TheBeeroness

As I type this, I stand firmly on the waining end of National IPA Day (August 1st).  With two different bottles of IPA rattling around in my bones, I blame all levels of grammatical inaccuracies and typos on higher than average ABV’s.

IPA day was started by bloggers, with nothing to gain but promoting the hoptastic end of craft beer sepctructrum. It wasn’t a cooperate game, a marketing strategy, or a way to promote a single beer. It’s a rally cry, a voice from within this community I’ve come to love that just says, "join us." A way to celebrate the beer that’s at the cornerstone of a movement that identifies us as a community and a way to pull others into the pot. Drink the Dry Hopped Kool-Aid with us, we want you here. No singular voice benefits from this, it’s just a fun, rising tide, that lifts all craft beer ships.

For these reasons, I’ll always participate. Until it gains sponsors, then I may have to reconsider.

Lemon Beer Dream Cake via @TheBeeroness

As I spent a day in and out of comprehensive distraction, I did what I do in this corner of Craft Beer Land, I cooked. I baked. I made a cake that served as a bit of therapy for a strange time in a strange life. I wanted to pay homage to the Beer of the Hour, but that IPA can temperamental. Cooking and reducing an IPA in any capacity can be a bit hit or miss. Higher IBU beer (IBU stands from International Bitterness Units, it’s how to tell how hoppy or bitter a beer is), reduce to a very bitter product. I generally use them when the beer won’t beer cooked (or at least not cooked for an extended period of time), or when I want a little beer to go along way, flavor wise.

Lemon Beer Dream Cake via @TheBeeroness

A fringe benefit of beer blogging is surprise shipments of beer from great breweries. A recent shipment was graciously sent over from a brewery out of Athens, Georgia called Terrapin. Although most of the time I’ve spent in Georgia should go lavishly unrecorded, I would like to take a trip back to visit this place.

Terrpain’s dedication to diversity of brew, as well as a steadfast determination to provide Beer For All, makes this a place I want to hang out. Sampling the beer sent all the way to the far reaches of the West Coast, I found beer that I can give to the Craft Beer Seekers in my life as well as beer that I consider to be Gateway Beer. Gateway beer is a favorite category of mine, and often hard to fill. It’s beer that will rest well on the palates of those in the Craft Beer know, as well as easy beer to serve to people who, "don’t really like beer." It’s my way of pulling a few vodka drinkers and inBev devotees over to the Craft Beer side.

Only hours after a stash from Terrapin landed on my doorstep, I weighed my options. For this cake, I needed a lower hop beer for the cake and wanted an IPA for the filling and the frosting. I choose Maggie’s Peach Farmhouse ale (great gateway beer) for the cake and Hopzilla (beautiful, well balanced IPA) for the frosting.

Lemon Beer Dream Cake via @TheBeeroness

If you’re new to craft beer, or want a beer that’s easy to serve to people on the beer fringes, the Maggie’s Farmhouse is a great one to offer. It would also be a great choice for my Beer Sangria.

The Hopzilla I really liked, it was well balanced and in my world of flavor profiles and balanced tastes, that’s a win. A nice malt finish after a hoppy start always wins me over.

Lemon Beer Dream Cake via @TheBeeroness

Lemon Beer Dream Cake


For the cake:

  • 2 ½ cups cake flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 tbs lemon zest
  • ¾ cup unsalted butter softened
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • ½ cup Saison pale ale or White ale beer
  • 5 egg whites reserve yolks for curd
  • ¼ tsp cream or tartar

For the filling:

  • 2 whole eggs plus five yolks
  • 1 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 1 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice about 6 large lemons
  • 1 tbs lemon zest
  • ½ cup IPA beer
  • 2 tbs corn starch
  • ½ cup unsalted butter cut into cubes

For the Frosting:

  • 1 cup butter softened
  • 2 cups confectioners sugar
  • 1 tbs lemon zest
  • 2 tbs lemon juice
  • 3 tbs IPA beer
  • 3 tbs whole milk


  • Preheat oven to 350.
  • In a large bowl, stir together the cake flour, baking powder, and salt.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer add the butter, sugar, and lemon zest, beat on high until very well combined, light and fluffy, about 5 minutes.
  • In a small bowl, add the beer and buttermilk (it’s ok if it curdles).
  • Alternating between the flour and the beer mixture, add a bit of each to the stand mixer while it runs on low speed, until all ingredients are combined. Scrape the bottom of the bowl to make sure all ingredients are well combined.
  • Remove the batter, add to a large bowl. Clean the mixer very well (using a hand mixer or a separate mixer is fine as well).
  • Add the egg whites and cream of tartar to the clean bowl of a stand mixer, any amount of fat and the egg whites will not whip properly.
  • Whip on high until stiff peaks form, about 5 minutes.
  • Add about 1/3 of the egg whites to the cake batter mixture, gently fold to combine. Once combined, gently fold in half of the remaining egg whites, then the final egg whites, stir until combined.
  • Grease and flour three 9-inch cake pans very well (8 inch cake pans will work as well), divide the batter between the three pans.
  • Bake at 350 for 20 minutes or until the tops have just started to brown.
  • Allow to cool to room temperature before removing from pans.
  • While the cake is baking, make the curd.
  • In a pan off heat, whisk together the eggs, yolks, sugar, lemon juice, lemon zest, beer, and corn starch. Add the butter cubes, place the pan over medium high heat. Whisk frequently until thicken to a pudding like consistency, about 10 minutes.
  • Remove from heat, add to a bowl and refrigerate until chilled, about 1 hour.
  • To make the butter cream, add the butter, sugar, and zest to a stand mixer, building up speed, beat on high until very well combined, light and fluffy, about 5 minutes.
  • One tablespoon at a time, slowly add the lemon juice, beer and milk, allowing to re-mix to a fluff consistency between additions, this should take no less than 8 minutes total. Make sure the frosting is very well whipped.
  • To assemble the cake, add one layer of cake to a cake plate. Top with half of the lemon mixture, then with another layer and then with the rest of the lemon mixture before adding the final layer of cake. Top the final layer of cake with the butter cream. If you want to frost the entire cake with buttercream, double the buttercream recipe, assemble the layers and chill the cake for at least one hour before attempting to frost.
  • Chill until ready to serve.

Lemon Beer Dream Cake via @TheBeeroness



Drunken Strawberry Tart with Beer Lemon Curd

Being wrapped in a world filled with food people, the lovers, academics and fanatics, I’ve often lost my footing. Forgotten the simple pleasures of small, honest meals for the sake of a journey towards the creation of an epic recipe. While surrounding myself with people who strive to reinvent the world of food as we know,  I’ve been so entranced that I’ve stepped away from the core of who I am and the food I fell in love with.

I am not a moderist cook.

I am not a chef.

I may never create an epic recipe.

I am OK with that.

It was through a process, not of self discovery but of self remembrance, that stumbled upon a memory that I had almost lost within my catalogue of food experiences. Under the thousand dollar dinners, PR events, celebrity chefs, and world renowned restaurants was a small Italian city, and a home cooked meal.

Years ago, on what turned out to be a 16 hour layover, I was stuck in Pescara Italy. A girl about my age, just past 21, took pity on a broke and confused American in her tiny local airport and asked if she could show her town to me. It began with a home cooked meal, from her own mothers hands on a rickety folding table in her living room, the only place in the small apartment that would accommodate us all. Homemade bread, a small green salad, smashed peas and a roasted chicken.

For dessert was a lemon tart. Simple, beautiful and tangy, made by the hands of a woman who didn’t speak a word of English, but who took time to cook for me even though we would never have the ability to have a conversation, and I could never properly thank her. This is the food that I fell in love with, and I am reminding myself to stay true to that.

I’ve done my best to make the beer infused version of the tart that was made for me in Pescara, and chose a beer that is nearly as fascinating to me. Cooney Island Lager has flavors that remind me a great meal made in spring, orange, citrus, bread and apples.

If you can’t find this beer, look for a low hop beer with notes of citrus, tropical fruits and bread.

Drunken Strawberry Tart with Beer Lemon Curd


For the tart crust:

  • 1 1/4 cups of flour
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 stick of unsalted butter cut into small cubes
  • 3-5 tbs ice cold water

For the curd:

  • 1 tbs lemon zest
  • 2 whole eggs plus six yolks
  • 1 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 1 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice about 6 large lemons
  • ½ cup beer
  • 2 tbs corn starch
  • 1 stick unsalted butter cut into cubes

For the Strawberries

  • 3 cups strawberries
  • ½ cup beer
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar

For the Whipped Cream

  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 2 tbs beer
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar


  • In a food processor, combine the flour, sugar, and salt. Pulse to combine. Add the cubes of butter and process until combined, about 1-2 minutes. Your dough should resemble course meal.
  • Start with 3 tbs of water, pulse until combined. If the crust doesn’t hold together add more water, a bit at a time, until it does.
  • Dump the dough into a 4 inch deep, 9 inch wide tart pan with a remove-able bottom (you can also use a pie pan). Starting with the sides, form the crust inside the pan, trying your best to make it all as even as possible. Cover with plastic wrap and chill for a least 3 hours.
  • Preheat oven to 375.
  • Place a sheet of parchment paper inside your tart and fill with pie weights. If you don’t have any, dried beans work great.
  • Bake for 20-25 minutes or until your tart is a light golden brown. Remove from oven, allow to cool slightly. remove pie weights.
  • Add the lemon zest, lemon juice, beer, sugar, corn starch, whole eggs and yolks to a bowl and whisk until well combined. Add the lemon mixture to a pan over medium/low heat along with the butter. Whisk until thickened, about 10 minutes. Allow to cool to room temperature.
  • Add the curd to the crust and chill until set, about 4 hours.
  • Just prior to serving add the berries to a shallow bowl of pie pan and cover with 1/2 cup beer. Allow to stand at room temperature for 15-20 minutes. Drain and return to bowl with the sugar, stir to combine.
  • Add all of the whipped cream ingredients to a stand mixer and mix on high until soft peaks form, about 4 minutes.
  • Top tart with berries and whipped cream just prior to serving.

Lemon Pilsner Cake

 If you have ever had the opportunity to talk to a brewmaster, you have seen it. You’ve seen that look that lets you know that there is an art and a respect for what they do that goes far past what most Americans experience at their day jobs. The look that tells you that the paycheck isn’t the reason he does the job. The flavors, the journey, the solving of the problems that yield to an end result of a drinkable, shareable masterpiece. You’ve seen that look.

It’s because of that look that I try to create recipes that respect the years of love and hard work that go into the process of making Craft Beer. I had the idea of making a lemon cake with pilsner, but the issue is always the hops. Hops are a hard ingredient to cook and bake with, given that they often reduce to a very bitter product. Scrimshaw Pilsner, while still a pilsner, has a low, and well balanced hop taste. It is also from one of my favorite breweries, North Coast, that produces an incredible variety of craft beer. And you can bet that if you are ever lucky enough to take a tour of the brewery, you will see that look I’m talking about, all over the place.

Lemon Pilsner Cake

1 1/2 cups cake flour

1 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/3 tsp salt

2 tbs lemon zest

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter

1 1/4 cup sugar

3 eggs

1/4 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice

1/2 cup Pilsner


4 oz cream cheese, softened (cold cream cheese will result in lumpy icing)

1 cup powdered sugar

1/4 cup heavy cream

1/4 cup Pilsner

1/2 tsp vanilla


Preheat oven to 350.

Spray a large loaf pan with butter flavored cooking spray.

In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and lemon zest until well mixed.

In the bowl of  stand mixer, cream the butter and sugar until well combined. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well and scraping the bowl between additions. Add the lemon juice and mix until well combined. Turn the mixer on low and add the flour a bit at a time until just barely combined, do not over mix.

Remove the bowl from the stand mixer and add the pilsner, stirring with a wooden spoon until just combined. Pour into prepared loaf pan. Bake at 350 for 45-55 minutes or until the top turns a light golden brown and a tooth pick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow to cool before serving.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, add the cream cheese and the powdered sugar, beating until well combined. Add the remaining ingredients and whip until smooth.

Top the cake with the icing, chill prior to serving.

 Cooking and baking with craft beer. 

Nation Pie Day Lemon Pie With Animal Cracker Crust

This is just a lemon pie.

A delicious, easy to make, creamy, lemon pie.

It doesn’t use gelatin, like a typical meringue pie does. I stopped using gelatin altogether because it’s made form animal byproducts, so it isn’t kosher or vegetarian, excluding quite a few of my friends from enjoying my dessert.

It’s also made with a cracker crust, made with animal crackers instead of graham crackers, which pair nicely with lemon and give your a firm reminder of your youth. It’s like a Nostalgia Crust.

I love a really good graham cracker crust, and I’ve learned a few tips over the years that I’m going to share with you.

Wether you use animal crackers, graham crackers, shortbread cookies or my favorite: Girl Scout Trefoils, these are tips that will put your crust well above the rest. 

Tips for the Best Cracker Crust:

1. Add 2 tbs brown sugar to the food processor when you crush the crackers. This will give your crust a nice caramel flavor, as well as help it stay together. 

2. Assemble the sides first, then the bottom. This will help you to give the sides a professional look as well help your crust to be even. 

3. Press the crap out the crust. Really, really smash it into place. Use a coffee mug, a bowl, a glass measuring cup, to press it very firmly into place. This is the secrete to having crust that stays beautifully in place when you remove the slices from the pan. 

4. Brush with an egg wash (1 egg white, 1 tbs water, beaten) before baking. This only works if you are going to bake the crust and then fill it, but it will keep the crust from getting soggy when it sits. 

There you have it. The tips to make a perfect graham cracker crust. 

Deep Dish Lemon Pie with Animal Cracker Crust

Animal Cracker Crust:

4 cups animal crackers

2 tbs brown sugar

1/4 tsp salt

1 stick of butter, melted

Lemon Curd:

3 tbs lemon zest (I use this super quick zester)

7 egg yolks (reserve one white for an egg wash)

1 cup white sugar

1 cup lemon juice (fresh squeezed)

1 tbs corn starch

1 stick unsalted butter, cut into cubes

Whipped Cream:

2 cups heavy cream

1 cup powdered sugar

1/4 tsp salt

1 tsp vanilla

Preheat oven to 350. 

In a food processor, add the animal crackers, salt and brown sugar. Process until only crumbs remain. Add the melted butter and pulse until combined and it resembles wet sand. Dump into the bottom of a deep dish pie pan.

If you don’t have a deep dish pan, you wont need this entire amount. You can remove about 1/2 cup, spray the insides of a muffin tin make 2-3 small "mini pies" (remove from muffin tins before filling).

Starting with the sides, assemble to crust. Press very firmly into place. 

Put 1 egg white (use the yolk for the curd) plus 1 tbs of water in a small bowl and beat until well combined. Brush the insides of the crust with the egg wash. 

Bake at 350 for 18 minutes. 

Add the lemon zest, lemon juice, sugar, corn starch and yolks to a bowl and whisk until well combined. Add the lemon mixture to a pan over medium/low heat along with the butter. Whisk until thickened, about 8 minutes. Allow to cool to room temperature. 

Add the curd to the crust and chill until set, about 4 hours.

Put all the whipped cream ingredients in the bowl of a stand mixer and beat on high until light and fluffy and holds peaks, about 4 minutes. 

Top the pie with the whipped cream and serve. Chill until ready to serve. 

Lemon Pepper Biscuits

This was my breakfast this morning. Even if you aren’t a make-it-from-scratch kinda guy, biscuits should be the exception to that rule. A homemade biscuit tastes so wonderful, and it takes only about 10 minutes to throw these babies together. Plus, the leftovers are great for sandwiches.

Lemon Pepper Biscuits

2 cups of flour

1/2 tsp sea salt

1 1/2 tsp black pepper

1 1/2 tsp lemon zest

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp baking soda

1 tsp sugar

1 stick (8 tbs) butter, cut into small cubes

1/4 cup whole milk

1/4 cup of carbonated water

1 tbs lemon juice

Preheat oven to 450.

I’ve mentioned this before, a time or 12, but overworking dough makes it tough. The less you work with dough the better the texture. BUT, when making biscuits it’s important to make sure that all the butter is distributed evenly or you’ll get pockets of butter that will cook differently. Your goal is to distribute the butter as quikly and evenly as possible. To do this, cut the butter into small cubes and have a food processor do the quick work for you.

Put the flour, salt pepper, zest, baking powder, baking soda and sugar in your food processor and pulse until combined. add your butter cubes and  process until the butter is evenly distributed, about 1-2 minutes. Then add the milk, lemon juice and carbonated water and process until the liquid is well combined with the dry ingredients, about a minute.

Dump the dough onto a floured surface. Squish together with your hands to form a ball and then flatten into a rectangle about 6 -8 inches long and 2 inches high. Use a sharp knife to cut the biscuits into squares. You can make them as big or small as you want, but this recipe will make 4-6 average sized biscuits.

Place the biscuits on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper. Sprinkle the top with a bit of sea salt and pepper.

Bake for 12-15 minutes or until light golden brown.

Lemon Creme Brulee

I had this brilliant idea to serve the lemon creme brulee in a hollowed out lemon. Looks adorable right? Well…don’t try it. It turns out, it’s not a good idea. However, I was smart enough to make this delicious citrusy custard in ramekins as well and that turned out amazing. Next time I make this, and I will make it again, I’ll make it in this tart shell and serve it with this whipped cream.

Don’t be afraid of Creme Brulee. If you’ve never made it, you should try. All home cooks should have a list of five recipes that they want to master. Shoot high. Really. Nothing is off limits and Creme Brulee is a great place to start. It’s a classic recipe, its beautiful, sounds super fancy, and it’s pretty simple.  Creme Brulee tarts are also a great dessert to pull out for guests, guaranteed to evoke major OOOOOHHHH’s.


1 1/2 cups heavy cream

1/2 tbs vanilla extract

2 tsp lemon zest

4 egg yolks

1/4 cup sugar, plus another 1/4 cup for the topping

2 tbs lemon juice

Special equipment needed:

Culinary torch. Don’t be affraid of this either. Easy to use and not expensive. Mr. Fits bought me one at Crate and Barrel. But you can also buy them at Target and Amazon. You’ll also needbutane for it.

Most people cook them in ramekins, but you can use any oven safe, small, shallow dish, a tart or pie shell.

Once you have these three things you can make as much Creme Brulee as much as you want! You’re all set.

Preheat the oven to 300.

Put the cream, vanilla and the zest in a sauce pan over medium heat. cook just until its bubbly around the edges but not boiling. Remove from heat, cover and allow to cool for about 15 minutes.

In a bowl, combine the egg yolks, 1/4 cup of sugar and the lemon juice. Whisk until frothy, about 3 minutes.

While continuing to whisk, slowly add the cream mixture until well combined.

At this point, I cut up about 4 lemons to make the cups. Because the custard has to bake in the cups and then sit for 4 hours until set, the dessert leached too much bitterness from the white rind making it borderline inedible. The cups where really beautiful, so if I ever make a dessert that doesn’t need to be baked and can be served immediately (mousse, curd, pudding) I would make them again. I would coat the inside with lemon juice, then with sugar. I’d serve Lemon Mousse in these.

Using a paring knife and a spoon, I cut out the pulp and juiced it.


But, for this recipe DON’T make these. Use a ramekin or a tart shell (just have to reiterate that. It was a waste of perfectly yummy custard)

Put your ramekins in a baking dish, filling the baking dish with about 1 inch of water (if you are using a tart crust or pie shell, skip this).

Pour your custard through a mesh strainer into your designated Creme Brulee vessel.


Cover the baking dish or tart with aluminum foil and bake for 40 minutes.

Remove from oven and allow to cool, at room temp, in the water filled baking dish for 30 minutes. Transfer to a plate and allow to chill and set in the fridge for 4 hours. Right before serving, cover the top of your set custard with an even, thin layer of about of sugar (about 1/2-1 tsp). Then run your culinary torch over your sugar, slowly, until it melts and turns an amber color. Don’t touch it. I know, sounds like it should go without saying, but sometimes you get curious and you really WANT to touch it to see if its set or not, and it burns you and you yell profanities and scare your husband.

Another tip: Don’t brulee the sugar until you are ready to serve. After about an hour of just sitting there, the sugar will start to liquify again.