Elderflower Grapefruit Cake

Elderflower Grapefruit Cake

“The only other sound’s the sweep
Of easy wind and downy flake.”
– Robert Frost

After a string of blustery, gray, flurry-filled days, I was in the mood for bright flavors and created this elderflower grapefruit cake. With a floral sweetness from St. Germain and a vibrant touch from ruby red grapefruit, this cake disappeared from my counter so quickly that I regard it with a rather magical quality. I love it warm, but the flavors intensify as it cools.

From cider poached pears to citrus desserts, crisp fruitiness is the perfect match to classic winter days. A decadent hot chocolate is warming, but bright flavors are a true mid-winter treat. Whip up this recipe when the weather is brisk, and your kitchen will be scented with sweet elderflower, invigorating grapefruit, and freshly baked cake.

Ingredients

Cake

¾ cup butter, plus some for pan
1 ¼ cup flour, plus some for pan
1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
¾ cup sugar
2 eggs
Zest of one ruby red grapefruit
½ cup ruby red grapefruit juice

Syrup

½ cup ruby red grapefruit juice
¼ cup St. Germain
¼ cup sugar

Elderflower Grapefruit Cake with SyrupBegin by preheating the oven to 350 degrees and preparing a 9-inch cake pan with butter and flour. Combine 1 ¼ cups flour and the baking powder in a small bowl and set aside. In the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, scraping down after each addition. Next add the flour mixture and the grapefruit juice incrementally, beginning and ending with the flour. Scrape the batter into the prepared cake pan and smooth top. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until a tester inserted into the cake comes out clean.

In the meantime, make the syrup by combining the juice, St. Germain, and sugar in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil and cook for an additional 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and allow to cool slightly.

Once the cake is done, allow it to cool in the pan for 10 minutes on a wire rack. Turn it onto a wire rack, and allow it to cool for Place the wire rack over a plate, poke holes in the top of the cake, and brush the elderflower syrup onto the cake so that it is absorbed. Some may drip onto the plate below. Once the cake has soaked up a sufficient amount of the glaze (usually around half), return the remainder to the small saucepan, cook until it becomes thickened, and use as a cake topping, if desired. The cake may be served with powdered sugar, additional syrup, or plain (my favorite).

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