My birthday is today and after months spent holding onto 39 as if it were my last year to fully live, I’m happy to say, so this is 40! Finally, I’m embracing it, pregnant and all.
I heard on the radio this morning that Alex Van Halen and I share the same birthday. Aside from my brief dabbling with the band during my junior high and high school years, I think I entering my forth decade of life deserves an 80’s style drum solo tribute, don’t you?
Here’s what I know so far. My 40’s will be the decadent years, my roaring jazz age if you will.
Breakfasts with tea and lemon cake in bed. Long walks in the rain. Lunch dates. Photo shoots.
Gallery trips. A terrific outpouring of love from friends and the best birthday present ever from David and Luke (they made me a book of my life to date with photos and memories from friends).
A Beastie Boys rockout and so so much more. Thanks for being part of it all. I’m off to celebrate and have more cake.
Note: The lemon glaze gives a sweet lemon kick to the cake. You could also skip the glaze and serve it with a dusting of powdered sugar for a humble version.
Lemony French Yogurt Cake
makes one 9-inch round cake; 8 servings
1 ½ cups all-purpose flour, plus extra for dusting
½ cup almond flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
½ teaspoon sea salt
1 ¼ cups natural cane sugar
grated zest of 1 lemon
1 cup plain almond yogurt, drained (I use homemade but Amande cultured yogurt works well too)
½ cup vanilla almond milk
¼ cup canola (or other neutral) oil
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
lemon glaze ingredients:
1 ½ cups powdered sugar, sifted
2 tablespoons vanilla almond milk
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
½ teaspoon grated lemon zest
To make the cake: Preheat the oven to 350F. Brush a 9-inch round cake pan with oil. Dust with flour and tap out excess.
In a large bowl, whisk the flours, baking powder, and salt together. In a medium bowl, rub the sugar and lemon together with your fingertips until the sugar is moist and the lemon is fragrant. Add the lemon sugar to the flour mixture and stir well.
In a blender or food processor, combine the drained yogurt, milk, oil, and vanilla. Blend until smooth, then pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir until just mixed.
Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake until top of cake is golden brown and a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean, 40 to 45 minutes.
Let cake cool in pan on a wire rack for 15 minutes. Unmold cake, set right-side up, and cool to room temperature. Place a baking sheet under the rack.
To make the lemon glaze: In a medium bowl, whisk together all the ingredients until completely smooth. Pour lemon glaze evenly over top and sides of the cooled cake. Garnish with a lemon twist or wedge in the center. Transfer to a serving platter.