Lemon Buttermilk Cake with Strawberries
1 3/4 cups sugar
3/4 cup butter, room temperature
2 tablespoons lemon peel, grated
3 extra large eggs
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
3 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups buttermilk
1 16 ounce package of frozen sliced strawberries, thawed
12 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
2 cups powdered sugar
5 tablespoons frozen lemonade concentrate, thawed
1/2 teaspoon lemon peel, finely chopped
2 1-pint baskets strawberries, hulled
FOR CAKE:Position rack in center of oven and preheat to 350 degrees. Butter and flour three 9" diameter cake pans with 1 1/2 inch high sides. Beat sugar, butter and lemon peel in large bowl until light and fluffy. Add eggs 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in lemon juice. Sift flour, baking soda and salt into medium bowl. Stir dry ingredients into butter mixture alternately with buttermilk, beginning and ending with dry ingredients.
Divid batter among prepared pans. Bake until tester inserted into center of cakes comes out clean, about 30 minutes. Transfer pans to racks and cool 15 mintues. Turn out cakes onto racks and cool completely. Can be prepared 1 day ahead. Wrap tightly in plastic and store at room temperature.
Boil sliced sweetened strawberries with juices in heavy small saucepan over medium-high heat until mixture is reduced to 2/3 cup and begins to thicken, stirring frequently, about 20 minutes. Cool to room temperature.
FOR FROSTING: Beat cream cheese and butter in large bowl until light and fluffy. Gradually add powdered sugar and beat until smooth. Beat in lemonade concentrate and lemon peel.
Divide strawberry mixture between 2 cake layers and spread over tops, leaving 1/2" border around edges. Let stand until slightly set, about 5 minutes. Place 1 strawberry-topped layer on platter. Drop 3/4 cup frosting atop cake by spoonfuls; gently spread over top. Top with remaining strawberry-toped layer. Drop 3/4 cup frosting by spoonfuls atop cake; gently spread over top. Top with remaining cake layer. Using spatula, spread remaining frosting in decorative swirls over sides and top of cake. Can be prepared 1 day ahead. Cover with cake dome and chill. Let cake stand at room temperature 1 hour before continuing.
Decoratively arrange strawberries, pointed side up, atop cake. Cut into wedges and serve.
Pairs Well With
You can never have too much lemon, at our house!