Lemon Pudding Cake
Pudding cakes are basically egg custards,
but with two improvements. Unlike ordinary egg custard, pudding cakes contain a little flour and beaten egg whites. During
baking, the beaten egg whites will float to the top, forming a spongy cake-like cap. Meanwhile, the remainder of the batter
settles to the bottom to make a pudding-like layer.
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, room
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
3 egg yolks, room temperature
2 to 3 teaspoons grated lemon zest
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice, strained
1 cup milk
whites, room temperature
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Adjust
oven rack to center position. Lightly butter baking pan or custard cups of your choice. Bring several quarts of water to boil
for water bath.
In a large bowl, combine butter,
sugar, and salt; beat until crumbly. Beat in egg yolks and flour, mixing until smooth. Slowly beat in lemon zest and juice;
stir in milk.
In a large bowl, beat egg whites
until stiff peaks form. Gently whisk whites into batter just until no large lumps remain. Immediately ladle batter into prepared
baking pan or custard cups. Do not pour; otherwise, the first cups get all the froth and the later cups get all the batter.
Set a roasting pan onto oven rack.
Lay folded dish towel onto bottom of roasting pan; set custard cups or baking pan on top of towel. Pour enough boiling water
into roasting pan to come halfway up sides of baking pan or custard cups.
Bake 25 minutes or until pudding
cake center is set and springs back when gently touched. Remove roasting pan from oven and set on a wire rack. Let pan or
cups continue to stand in water bath for 10 minutes. Serve at room temperature or chilled.
Makes 4 to 6 servings.