This Lemon Pudding Cake Recipe was prepared with Meyer lemons, a bright yellow colored lemon slightly sweeter than the regular yellow lemons.
Watch a video of the Lemon Pudding Cake Recipe HERE.
“Meyer lemon is believed to be a hybrid of lemon and orange parentage. The tree was born in the U.S from Beijing, China, in 1908 by Frank Meyer, a plant explorer of the U.S. Department of Agriculture,” said Wikipedia.
When you think of lemon desserts, you probably think of lemon bars, a quintessential spring dessert, especially if it’s made by someone who makes good pies. While I love making pies, the crust requires a bit more time. In a recent virtual cooking class, the team asked me for a lemon dessert that could be done in less than an hour. Bingo! This Lemon Pudding Cake was the perfect answer.
They are complex and sophisticated, tangy and tart. Each bite zips around your mouth, hitting sweet and sour notes. The texture is a wonder, a mixture between a souffle, a mousse, a cake, a pudding, and a custard—all in one. Best of all, it takes only 20 to 25 minutes to bake.
This Lemon Pudding Cake Recipe was such a hit in a virtual cooking class that I have been offering it at many events. Whenever we make it, the crowd loves them.
Where I grew up in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, it seemed that you could only find limes in every farmer’s market. In recent years, I started to see the bright yellow Sicilian Lemons offered in Brazil. I don’t even know if Meyer Lemon is found in my country.
Can you substitute Meyer Lemons for Sicilian Lemons or Green Limes?
Yes, in most recipes, including this one. All these limes and lemons can be used the same way. As long as you remember that they have slightly different levels of acidity and sweetness, substituting one for another can make a recipe somewhat different. My suggestion when replacing regular lemons for Meyer lemons is to test the recipe before serving so that you have time to make any necessary adjustments. If you’re using Meyer lemons, stick with the amount in the recipe, as it works wonders.
Plenty of contemporary recipes for Lemon Pudding Cakes call for baking these babies in the oven at 350˚F. But I urge you to bake in the regular mode (not convection); besides giving the Lemon Pudding Cakes a better texture, you manage to control the golden color on top at the end by cranking the heat to 375˚F then on convection for just 5 minutes; if you bake all the way at convection, they brown too much on top.
I like the simplicity of serving them with just powder sugar on top. Still, you can serve it with a side of blueberries, berry jam, or coconut ice cream for a more composed dessert.
To see a video of this Lemon Pudding Cake Recipe click on my YOUTUBE channel and be sure to subscribe it.
Lemon Pudding Cake Recipe
Makes 6-7 cakes
3 large eggs, separated
¾ cup (180ml) whole milk, at room temperature
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
½ cup (120ml) fresh lemon juice (about 3 lemons)
2 teaspoons lemon zest
1/3 cup (42g) all-purpose flour
¼ teaspoon salt
1 cup (200g) sugar (divided into ½ and ½)
Confectioner’s sugar for garnish
- Pre-heat oven to 350˚F on bake (not convection). Grease 6 to 7 six-ounce ramekins with butter or nonstick spray. Place into a large baking pan or casserole dish. The cakes will bake in a water bath inside the casserole dish.
- Whisk egg yolks, milk, melted butter, and lemon juice together in a bowl.
- In another bowl, combine the lemon zest, flour, salt, and ½ cup sugar. Pour into the lemon liquid mixture and whisk well, making sure there are no flour lumps.
- Whip the egg whites with the remaining ½ cup sugar until soft peaks form.
- Spoon about 1/3 of the egg whites into the lemon batter. Working slowly and carefully so as not to deflate the egg whites, gently fold together until combined. Fold in the rest of the egg whites. Batter will be thick and airy.
- Divide between ramekins, leaving about ½ inch from the top.
- Add hot water, up to halfway up the sides of the ramekins, without splashing into the ramekins. I like to use the spout of a tea kettle for this task.
- Carefully place the pan in the oven. Bake until the lemon cakes are puffy and lightly browned on top, about 20 minutes, rotating once during baking time. At this point, the custard will be set but look pale yellow on top. Crank the oven to 375˚F and bake for another 4-5 minutes to allow the Lemon Pudding Cakes to get lightly golden on top. Remove the baking pan from the oven and remove the ramekins from the baking pan. Let them cool to room temperature. You can prepare them up to this point at least 5 days ahead of time and keep them wrapped in the refrigerator. Bring them to room temperature at least 30 minutes before serving and dust with confectioner’s sugar.
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