Trying Out A New Recipe: Iced Lemon Loaf
I haven’t baked anything in a while, and it was starting to make me sad, so I said to myself, well why don’t I just bake something? So I did! I chose this lemon loaf for a couple different reasons, the first being that I scrolled past it on Instagram and thought it looked good in the moment. The second reason is that it’s from my favorite food blogger! And thirdly, I had all the ingredients.
So, here is Half Baked Harvest’s Iced Lemon Loaf.
Like I said, I happened to have all the ingredients already, which is kind of surprising because there’s one or two things on the list that I normally have to go specifically buy from the store.
It’s a fifty-fifty shot whether I have sour cream or not, the cream cheese is definitely a bit of a rarer ingredient for me to immediately have on hand. The lemons are the only other thing that are what I consider a specialty item for this recipe, but last week I bought a two pound bag for like four bucks so I had that covered. Actually, the recipe calls for Greek yogurt or sour cream, but I only had the latter so that’s what I ended up using. If you make this recipe with the yogurt, I’d be curious to see if it turns out differently.
The first step of the recipe was easy enough, just beat together the butter, honey, and some lemon zest. I was surprised by how much honey was needed for this recipe until I realized there was no granulated sugar in this recipe at all. The honey is the only sweetener for the batter, so it makes sense you’d need a lot.
For the next step, the recipe warned that the mixture would look curdled, but I only expected it to look that way after adding the sour cream. It ended up looking funky after adding just the eggs, though.
Didn’t love the look of that, but the recipe said it was okay so I kept going, and after the sour cream it definitely looked nasty.
After that, all that was left was the dry ingredients, which went right into the same bowl (hooray for fewer dishes!). Once combined, the batter ended up being a weirdly light consistency. It was more like a dough and less like a batter, which is a distinction I don’t think I’d have been able to make until recently. The more you bake, the more you learn about baking! Who would’ve guessed.
Now that the loaf mixture was made, it was time to make the cream cheese mixture that goes into the loaf. It was literally only cream cheese and lemon zest, so I thought it’d be easy, but the cream cheese was evidently not soft enough and immediately all went inside my whisk.
This shit is mad annoying. I got a rubber spatula and got the cream cheese out of the inside and knew what I had to do. I had to go ham on this cream cheese to get it softer, so I hulked out and tried beating the hell out of it. Alas, it was too strong for me, and just kept being a pain in the ass to handle. So I microwaved it for ten seconds. That made it change its tune, and finally it was spreadable.
The recipe says to layer the loaf mixture and cream cheese, starting by putting a third of the loaf mixture into the loaf pan. How the hell am I supposed to know how much a third of it is? It’s batter dude, you just want me to eyeball that shit? Well, I definitely tried to wing it, but a third of the batter didn’t even cover the bottom of the loaf pan! So I said fuck it and poured half the batter into the loaf pan, then used all of the cream cheese mixture instead of half.
Coincidentally, all of the cream cheese mixture ended up covering the first half of the batter perfectly. Then I covered that with the other half of the batter.
The recipe says to bake it for 45 minutes, so I did just that. Once the 45 minutes had passed, it definitely looked done, but when I tested it with a knife, it was most certainly not done. I wanted to let it bake for another five minutes, but I was worried about burning the top because it was already so done on top. Then I remembered the recipe said that you can cover the top with foil to keep it from getting overdone. So I threw some foil on top and let it bake for another five minutes, and then it was actually done!
Of course, I had to make this lemon loaf in my lemon loaf pan:
While that cooled a bit, I whipped up the lemon icing. It was just some powdered sugar, honey, and lemon juice. I don’t know what my issue is lately with powdered sugar, but everything I’ve baked that requires some kind of powdered sugar glaze or icing just doesn’t taste good. Like, the powdered sugar aspect of it always tastes funny to me. It’s definitely not expired, and I figured Domino was a good brand to go with, so I’m not sure what it is lately that makes powdered sugar taste kind of bad to me? Like I honestly think everything I’ve made that calls for a glaze or icing would just be better without it.
Regardless, I still drizzled some onto a slice of the bread. However, the bread was still too warm and immediately melted the glaze.
In the end, it tasted okay! It’s not amazing, but not bad or anything. I was hoping it would be better than Starbuck’s version, but I wouldn’t say it is. Maybe it’s baker’s error, or maybe it would’ve been better if I used Greek yogurt. Honestly, I think it’d be better without the cream cheese. It’s weird texturally inside the bread.
All in all, I don’t regret making it but I doubt I’ll make it again any time soon.
Do you like lemon pastries? Do you think powdered sugar has a funny taste? Let me know in the comments, and have a great day!