Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Key Lime Bundt Cake

I'm all about seasonal freshness and local food, if I see vine tomatoes but the sign says product of usa or mexico and I'd much rather go for the hothouse tomatoes grown locally.

I'm also a bargain hunter so today I saw key limes, tons of them on the clearance rack, two little sacks choved onto a tray and wrapped up with plastic and a sign that says 1.49. I figured I'd give them a try since they looked pretty ok and I've been eyeing them over the summer but their price is usually close to $4.

The key lime always confused me, I've never tasted them before and I hear they are used for pie - the fameous key lime pie - but I don't have much of a sweet tooth and pie isn't my thing really, especially a citrus pie with meringue .. not my thing at all (please don't kill me lol)

When I was younger in pakistan my mother used to give us a lime type of fruit that was very sweet, and delicious but this isn't the same thing at all. I've not yet located any of those in the west yet, but my search over those sugary limes is not over yet!

Wiki says key limes are loomi amani, which is a dry lime that is brown in color used in arabic food, to flavour stews and rice, and all sorts of dishes, very popular in southern iraqi cuisine, as well as all over the gulf and parts of the middle east as well as persia where it's called leemo. Being of middle eastern backround I can work with this.

If I can dry the rest of these babies successfully (unlike the baby cherry peppers I hung from my window which resulted in a scary moldy interior -ewe! ) then all should be well and I'll have a huge stock of some dry lime for my cooking.

Not a fan of the pie as I said so a cake sounded just right. I LOVE CAKES! Especially plain sort of cakes.

Here's a good time to use the kitchen aid mixer or a hand mixer because you'll have to trust me on this, after zesting and squeezing the juice out of all those little limes the last thing I wanted to do was use a whisk.

Took me a bit to figure out what the breadcrumbs were for, I've debated whether to use panko or ordinary ones and it's a good thing I didn't season my homemade breadcrumbs with salt, pepper or anything like that because I was thinking of it last week.

Upon some searching online I found a blog which mentioned not to use panko, and instead a fine regular sort of breadcrumb so I went for that instead and seems it is a trick used for bundt pans to prevent sticking I guess. Learning something new everyday!

Moving on to the recipe. I've zested close to 10 key limes even though the recipe calls for three, why not I say - go big or go home - and their juice made EXACTLY 1/2 cup for the syrup. Yay!

Upon tasting the batter I found it to be just right, tasted like a green fruit loop to be honest, so I'm glad I went for more zest.

Next time I'll use coconut milk instead of regular, and see how that turns out!
My cake baked for exactly 1 hour, so keep an eye on it, Also I've placed another tray under the bundt to prevent any browning because my oven is hotter than the norm.

Recipe for Key Lime Bundt Cake

Best made the day before. Helpful to have one of those microplane graters for lime zest. I think I use a bit more zest than the recipe calls for. Enjoy!

Fine dry bread crumbs & softened butter (for coating pan)
3 cups sifted all-purpose flour
2 tsps baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
8 oz unsalted butter, at room temp.
2 cups sugar
4 extra large or jumbo eggs (I often use 5 large eggs)
1 cup milk
Finely grated zest of 3 limes, preferably key limes

1/2 cup fresh key lime juice or 1/4 cup each lime & lemon juice
3/4 cup sugar

Oven 350 degrees
Butter 10 inch tube pan (I use my Bundt pan) and sprinkle w/ bread crumbs (coat - use a lot of butter)

Sift together flour, baking powder, salt and set aside.
Beat butter till soft, gradually add sugar, beat 'till light & fluffy. Beat in eggs one at a time, scraping down bowl after each addition.
On lowest speed, alternately add dry ingredients & milk, scraping bowl as nec. and beating just to mix each addition.
Stir in lime zest by hand.
Pour half the batter on one side of pan, half in other. Level top by briskly rotating pan back and forth.

Bake until cake tester comes out clean, about 1 1/4 hours. Let cool slightly on wire rack - 10-15 mins.

Stir lime juice and sugar together just to mix.

Place cake rack on tube pan and invert and place rack over foil. Using pastry brush, brush glaze all over warm cake until completely absorbed. Brush on any glaze that drips onto foil.

Let cake cool completely & transfer to cake platter. Let stand loosely covered for several hours or preferably over night. When ready, outside of cake will be completely dry.

Thanks to MMRuth, a chowhound member for this recipe. It is a delicious cake and I'll be making it again and again!!!


Anonymous said...

I think the lime-like fruit you are looking after are called "Spanish Limes" here. They sell them in more ethnic populated places such as Miami

Quay Po Cooks said...

I have had key lime pie but not cake. Must try this.