Back in the summer when I was looking for unusual salt and pepper shakers for Ron's chess set I found cute little heart shaped pans. I wasn't sure what I would be using them for, but I knew that at some point I would be using them. I mean, if anything, you can always use a heart shaped pan in February, right?
When trying to narrow down the field of recipe choices I had to do some serious contemplating. Valentine's Day equals chocolate to most people; however I had just baked two chocolate desserts in the recent past and knowing that my husband is not a huge chocolate fan I had to think outside the box a bit. I knew I wanted to bake mini cakes, could not do chocolate, am not a big fan of white, and did not want to bake a plain yellow cake. Hmmm, what was another option? Lemon. And what goes best with lemon? Raspberry.
I halved the recipe that I found so instead of two - nine inch round layers I baked 6 mini hearts to make three - two layer cakes. You can see that the cakes really puffed up in the center. Once they cooled, I used a serrated bread knife to level out the cakes so the layers would sit flat. A great way to sample the cake without being obvious about it! Homemade raspberry jam made a yummy and easy filling. Whipped cream was a light and fluffy addition, and some fresh raspberries were the perfect garnish.
I halved the lemon cake recipe and whipped cream topping, and used homemade raspberry jam instead of the raspberry curd. Enjoy!
Lemon Layer Cake with Raspberry Filling
Source: Mennonite Girls Can Cook
4 large eggs
2 large egg yolks
3/4 cup whole milk
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon grated lemon peel
2 cups cake floor
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted, cooled
3 cups chilled whipping cream
1/2 cup sugar
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray two 9-inch diameter cake pans with non-stick vegetable spray. Line bottom of pans with parchment paper; spray again.
Whisk eggs, yolks, milk, lemon juice, and lemon peel in medium bowl to blend. Whisk flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in large bowl to blend. Whisk oil and butter into flour mixture. Add egg mixture and whisk until smooth. Divide batter between prepared pans. Bake cakes until tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 30 minutes. Cool cakes on racks 10 minutes. Run knife around edge of pans to loosen cakes. Turn cakes out onto racks. Cool completely. Level cakes with a serrated knife, if necessary. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Wrap with plastic. Let stand at room temperature.)
Whip cream and 1/2 cup sugar until peaks form. Spread raspberry jam onto one cake layer. Place second cake layer on top. Clean jam around edges of cake. Spread whipped cream over top and sides of cake. Garnish with fresh raspberries. Chill until cold, about 2 hours. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover with cake dome and keep refrigerated.)