Just popping in today to say that my monthly joint review with Alexis Hall is up at All About Romance today. We rave over Rose Lerner’s Sweet Disorder and, as I mentioned in our review, I just couldn’t get over how much amazing food is in it. I’ve already used it as inspiration for three different recipes, but since one wasn’t mine and one was only very loosely inspired by the book, today I’m sharing pound cake.
But first, a group of Washington, DC adjacent romance-loving folks have decided to get together once a month in person to eat, drink and chat about the books we love. I’ve hashtagged it #DCRom on Twitter, which is super uninspired, but works, I guess. The plan is to get together on the third Tuesday of every month at Northside Social, the coffeehouse and wine bar in Arlington, Virginia. The next one will be Tuesday, May 19th from 6-8 pm. If you want reminders closer to the date, email or tweet me and I’ll add you to my totally ad hoc list that will not be used for any other purpose but reminding folks of gatherings.
And now, pound cake.
One of the more amusing aspects of Sweet Disorder is when confectioner Mr. Moon, the heroine’s prospective Whig groom, tries to tempt the sweet-averse Phoebe into trying his various treats. One of those is a pound cake that he describes as tasting of tea and lavender with a lemon glaze. Lucky for me, I happen to have had some leftover lavender sugar from making these cookies, a bag of Black Dragon Pearl tea that’s been hanging out in my cupboard since December and a notion for a light lemon syrup that would work kind of like basting a fruitcake in alcohol.
I have no illusions that this is in any way historically accurate. But that’s never been my goal. But what came out of the oven on the very first try was something like a cup lavender black tea flavored with lemon, albeit in cake form. I had no notion it would work on the first try and I didn’t take pictures.
So I had to make (and eat) it again. I swear. Such hardships I endure for you people.
Lavender and Black Tea Pound Cake with Lemon Glaze
Makes: 12 servings
Time: 1 hour, 15 minutes
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
2 heaping tablespoons black tea
1/2 teaspoon culinary lavender
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
16 tablespoons (2 sticks) melted unsalted butter
1/2 cup powdered sugar
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1. Spray a loaf pan with cooking spray, line with parchment sized to fit the pan. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In a food processor, combine sugar, tea and lavender and run until tea is pulverized–not dust, but no big pieces either. Add flour, baking powder and salt and pulse to combine. Add eggs ones at time, pulsing to combine. Add vanilla extract. Remove to large bowl.
2. Add melted butter and mix until just combined. Pour batter into prepared pan and smooth the top. Cook for 50-55 minutes until a skewer inserted in the cake comes out clean.
3. Mix powdered sugar and lemon juice until combined. Set aside.
4. Allow to cool in the pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Unmold the cake and poke holes in it all over with the skewer. Baste the cake on all sides with a pastry brush until the syrup is used.
5. Allow to cool completely, then slice and serve.
Disclosure: Rose Lerner and I have a friendly relationship on Twitter, but I bought Sweet Disorder myself.