New Babies and Lemon Ginger Cake (gluten-free)
My friend Lyn recently had her first baby (Wallis. They call her Wallabea. Isn’t that the cutest name? And she’s the most adorable baby, too! see her sleep here). At Lyn’s baby shower, one of her friends brought a lemon-scented almond flour cake that was light and delicious. I started thinking about what other flavors I could bring in to it, and ginger was my first idea.
While Lyn’s friend (I can’t remember her name) didn’t give me her recipe, we did chat about how simple this cake is to put together. And the light flavors and lack of flour make it perfect for Easter or Passover.
Start by separating the eggs. This is easiest to do while the eggs are still cold from the fridge, but you’ll want to give them time to come to room temperature, since you’ll get a lot more volume from the egg whites if you whip them when they are not cold.
Then get the rest of your ingredients ready. measure out the lemon juice and almond flour (I used Bob’s Red Mill for this), grate or chop your fresh ginger, and add half the sugar to the egg yolks.
The chopped fresh ginger is a lovely background note. You’ll taste it, but it will be subtle. Don’t get nervous about the amount of ginger root in this cake!
Also, when whipping the whites, you want to use a clean, dry bowl and whip. If there is any fat in the bowl, it will prevent the egg whites from whipping up and will result in a very dense cake.
Notice that pool of lemon glaze? Most of it will soak in. If you’re planning to make the cake the day before you serve it, you might halve the glaze amount, as almond-flour items tend to retain moisture quite well on their own.
Also, I didn’t sift my powdered sugar, but my husband is ok with a few lumps. If your husband is more particular, I recommend sifting the sugar before you stir in the lemon juice.
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar for dusting the pan
- 5 eggs, separated
- 1 1/2 cups almond meal (I used Bob's Red Mill)
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar, divided
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh ginger
- 1/4 cup lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon zest (optional)
- 1 cup powdered sugar, sifted
- 1/4 cup lemon juice
- Preheat the oven to 350˚F. Line a 9-inch springform pan with parchment paper. Spray with gluten-free pan spray and dust with 2 tablespoons sugar. Set aside.
- Whip the egg whites on medium-high speed in a clean dry bowl until foamy.
- Slowly add 1/4 cup of the sugar and whip on high until medium-stiff peaks form. Set aside.
- In another bowl, mix together the almond flour, egg yolks, remaining sugar, freshly chopped ginger, baking powder, salt and lemon juice.
- Fold 1/3 of the egg whites into the almond batter until 90% incorporated.
- Gently fold a second 1/3 of the egg whites into the almond batter until 90% incorporated.
- Gently fold in the remaining egg whites.
- Pour the batter into the prepared springform pan and gently smooth the top.
- Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean (about 40-50 minutes).
- Let cool 10 minutes in the pan, then loosen the sides of the springform and remove the ring from the cake.
- Whisk together the powdered sugar and lemon juice until smooth.
- Pour over the top of the cake and let soak in.
- This cake gets more moist the longer it sits. I was planning to serve mine the same day I made it, so I definitely needed all that glaze. If you're planning on making the cake ahead of time, you could easily halve the amount of glaze needed.