Lemon juice melted into granulated sugar forms a thin, shiny syrup that soaks into the loaf, bolstering its potency and imparting a glamorous gloss. (E. Jason Wambsgans/Chicago Tribune)

Lemon juice melted into granulated sugar forms a thin, shiny syrup that soaks into the loaf, bolstering its potency and imparting a glamorous gloss. (E. Jason Wambsgans/Chicago Tribune)

How to make a glam glazed lemon loaf without powdered sugar

This food writer says most recipes made with powdered sugar are better without. Like glaze.

  • Wednesday, November 28, 2018 1:30am
  • Life

By Leah Eskin / Chicago Tribune

Hate is a vile habit. It provokes sore feelings and tribal tendencies and war — all best avoided. Yet I admit: I hate powdered sugar.

I’m aware it’s sugar, powdered. It’s also cut with cornstarch, to curb clumping. It may sound innocent, but trust me: powdered sugar is up to no good. Taste a spoonful: vile. Sift it: instant coughing fit. Powdered sugar poses a health hazard.

Now that I have one of those buff blenders, I’ve discovered I can grind my own powdered sugar, minus the cornstarch. But why bother? Most recipes made with powdered sugar are better without.

Like glaze. Lemon juice stirred into powdered sugar makes a thick, white goo that glares from the top of lemon loaf. Lemon juice melted into granulated sugar forms a thin, shiny syrup that soaks into the loaf, bolstering its potency and imparting a glamorous gloss. Try a bite: nothing but peace, love and lemon power.

Very lemon loaf

4 large or 6 small lemons, scrubbed

1 stick unsalted butter (plus about 2 teaspoons for pan), softened

1¾ cups all-purpose flour

1½ teaspoons baking powder

½ teaspoon kosher salt

1½ cups sugar

2 whole eggs plus 1 yolk

1 cup whole-milk ricotta cheese

Finely grate zest from lemons. Measure 2 tablespoons zest, and set aside. Juice lemons. Butter a 9-by-5-by-3-inch loaf pan. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Whisk together flour, baking powder and salt.

Drop butter into the bowl of a stand mixer. On medium-high speed, beat fluffy, stopping to scrape down sides of bowl as needed, about 1 minute. Cascade in 1 cup sugar, still beating; beat fluffy, about 1 minute. Slide in eggs and yolk; beat fluffy. Beat in ricotta, the 2 tablespoons zest and ¼ cup of the juice. Slide in flour mixture; beat on low speed just to combine.

Scrape batter into prepared pan; smooth top. Bake until cake is golden brown on top and a toothpick stabbed in the center comes out flecked with crumbs, 55 to 60 minutes. Cool, 10 minutes. Run a blunt knife around the sides to loosen edges. Turn out; set on a rack over a rimmed baking sheet.

While cake is baking, make glaze. Pour remaining ½ cup sugar into a medium saucepan. Measure in ¼ cup juice. Simmer until sugar has dissolved and syrup thickens a bit, about 3 minutes. Brush glaze over top and sides of warm lemon loaf. (You may not use all the glaze.) When cool (or just barely warm), slice and serve.

Talk to us

More in Life

Trillium: Playing with the editing features on your phone can create interesting effects, like in this trillium photo. (Jessi Loerch)
How to take great on-trail photos with your phone

Today’s smartphones have sophisticated cameras and picture-taking controls. Here’s how to get the most out of them.

The Dmitri Matheny Group, led by horn player Dmitri Matheny, is scheduled to perform Oct. 9 at Tim Noah Thumbnail Theater in Snohomish. (Steve Korn)
All about music: Schedule of concerts around Snohomish County

The listings include Sir Mix-a-Lot, ZZ Top and Bands, Brews and Bowling at Evergreen Lanes in Everett.

2021 Chevrolet Trailblazer RS
Chevrolet Trailblazer is back, as a subcompact sport-utility

After a 2021 launch, some features are added for 2022, including some new metallic paint eye candy.

A pit stop in Forks to see the trucks from the Twilight franchise is fun when traveling with teenagers on the Olympic Peninsula. (Jennifer Bardsley)
Traveling with teenagers isn’t so easy-breezy as she thought

The new challenge: Now mom can count on her hand how many vacations they have left as a family.

Dr. Paul on the five signs you’ve been a successful parent

If your adult kids are struggling right now — does that mean that you didn’t do a good job? Absolutely not!

Is she out of luck on this Irish tour refund?

When Susan Danner cancels her Ireland tour after the COVID-19 outbreak, the operator promises a prompt refund. That was a year ago. Where’s her money?

Red osier dogwood  (Cornus sericea (stolonifera)) berries, leaves and twigs.
Red twig dogwoods — there’s variety of shrub for all seasons

Here are four new varieties of twig dogwoods on the market that provide fall and winter interest.

Josey Wise puts out one of the hundreds of glass pumpkins on a display at the Schack Art Center for the upcoming Schack-toberfest on Wednesday, Sept. 22, 2021 in Everett, Washington. The festival runs from Sept, 23 to Nov. 6. (Andy Bronson / The Herald)
Glowing gourds light up Schack-toberfest in Everett this fall

You can see more than 1,000 of the glass pumpkins, and even make your own. Plus, check out The Artists’ Garage Sale on Sept. 25.

Most Read