Lemon Layer Cake w/ Lemon Curd Filling and Lemon Buttercream
Lemon Curd Filling
12 egg yolks, at room temperature
3 tbsp grated lemon zest
1 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/2 tsp lemon extract (not oil)
1-1/2 cups granulated sugar
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
2 cups granulated sugar
4 large eggs, at room temperature
1-1/2 cups self-rising flour
1-1/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
3/4 cup whole milk
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 tsp grated lemon zest
Lemon Buttercream Icing
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, very soft
8 cups confectioner’s sugar
1/2 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tsp grated lemon zest
To Make the Lemon Curd: In a medium saucepan, whisk together the egg yolks, zest, lemon juice, extract, and sugar, until thoroughly combined. Using a wooden spoon, stir constantly over medium heat. Cook about 20 minutes until thick and bubbly.
Remove from the heat and add the butter, one piece at a time, stirring to incorporate. Place in the refrigerator overnight until firm.
To Make the Cake: Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease and lightly flour 3 (9x2-inch) round cake pans, then line the bottoms with waxed paper or parchment circles.
In a large bowl, combine the flours; set aside. In a large measuring cup, combine the milk, lemon juice and zest, whisking until smooth. Set aside.
In a large bowl, on medium speed, beat the butter until smooth. Add the sugar gradually and beat until fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the eggs, one at a time, waiting until each one is completely incorporated before adding the next one. Add the flour blend in 4 parts, alternating with the milk mixture, beating well after each addition before adding the next. Scrape the bowl and beaters, making sure there are no unincorporated ingredients in the bottom of the bowl.
Divide the batter equally between the prepared cake pans, smoothing the tops. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, spinning and reversing pans halfway through, or until a cake tester inserted into the center of cake comes out clean. Let cakes cool in pans for 10 minutes. Remove from pans and cool completely on a wire rack.
When the cake has thoroughly cooled, spread the icing or curd evenly between layers and over top of cake using an off-set spatula.
To Make the Lemon Buttercream Frosting: Place the butter in a large mixing bowl. Add 4 cups of the sugar, the juice, and the zest. Beat until smooth and creamy. Gradually add the remaining sugar, 1 cup at a time, until icing is thick enough to be of good spreading consistency. If desired, add a few drops of yellow food coloring and mix thoroughly.
Use and store at room temperature.