Meyer Lemon Pudding Cake with Chantilly Cream and Blueberries
Michael’s Genuine Food & Drink, Miami and Camana Bay, Grand Cayman
Adapted from Michael's Genuine Food: Down-to-Earth Cooking for People Who Love to Eat (Clarkson Potter, 2011)
This pudding cake has an almost unimaginably airy texture. JBF Award Winner Michael Schwartz says, “Like magic, this cake separates into two layers during baking: an airy and soufflé-like cake on top, and a soft lemony curd below. In truth, the first time I ate it I was convinced it was a cake and pudding recipe combined.”
- Unsalted butter, as needed
- 2 Meyer lemons
- 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 3/4 cup sugar, divided
- 3 large eggs, separated
- 1 1/2 cups whole milk
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 1 tablespoon confectioners’ sugar
- Fresh blueberries
Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Lightly butter a 1-quart soufflé, gratin, or other ceramic baking dish, or six 6-ounce individual ramekins or baking dishes. Set inside a 9 x 13-inch baking dish or a roasting pan and bring a kettle of water to a boil for the water bath.
Finely grate the zest from the lemons, and then squeeze out the juice. You should have roughly 1 tablespoon zest and 1/3 cup juice. Set aside.
Whisk together the flour, salt, and 1/2 cup of the sugar in a mixing bowl.
In another bowl, beat the egg whites with an electric mixer until they hold soft peaks. Beat in the remaining 1/4 cup sugar, a little at a time, and continue to beat until the whites hold stiff, glossy peaks.
In a separate large bowl, whisk together the yolks, milk, zest, and juice. Add the flour mixture, whisking until just combined. Gently fold half of the beaten whites into the batter with a rubber spatula to lighten it. Then fold in the remaining whites, taking care not to deflate them; it’s fine if some white streaks remain. The batter will be on the thin side and won’t look like regular cake batter.
Pour the batter into the soufflé dish or individual ramekins. Put the larger pan in the oven, with the soufflé dish or ramekins inside it. Fill the larger pan with enough boiling water to come about halfway up the sides. (It’s best to do this right on the oven rack so you don’t move the pans again and risk splashing water into the batter.) Bake until the cake is puffed and golden, 40 to 45 minutes for the large cake, 20 to 25 minutes for 6 small cakes.
To prepare the Chantilly cream, chill a mixing bowl and wire whisk in the freezer for 10 minutes before beginning. Whisk the cream in the chilled bowl until it begins to foam and thicken up. Add the confectioner’s sugar and continue to beat until the cream just holds soft peaks. Do not over whip. (Feel free to use an immersion blender with the whisk attachment or a handheld electric mixer if you don’t want to whip by hand.)
Serve the cake hot from the oven or let it cool a bit until warm. Spoon the pudding cake into small dessert bowls, being sure to get some of the lemon pudding at the bottom of the dish. Top with Chantilly cream and blueberries.