Has anyone else been sucked into the World Cup frenzy? Just like any other major international sporting event, the World Cup is one that I always look forward to, and this year was no exception.
My sister and I got into soccer way back in 2002. Unlike the U.S., every time the World Cup rolls around, it’s a big deal in Taiwan – all sorts of World Cup-related merchandise can be seen around every street corner. My sister and I’s favorite team (even til today) is Germany. I remember we’d set our alarms and wake up at 3 a.m. to watch them play. Because we lived in a small apartment, we’d tip toe around the house in the middle of the night, trying to rub the sleepiness away from our eyes, and muting the TV because we were afraid to risk waking up our parents and getting sent back to bed. We’d watch in silence, whispering to each other during the game, and silently cheer on our team. After the game was over, we’d put the remote right where we found it and sneak back into bed, waking up the next morning tired and exhausted (yeah, we had it down to a science).
Sounds crazy, but at that time, it was all so worth it.
For the past two World Cup games, I had to watch them by myself here in the U.S. while my sister caught the games back in Taiwan. We still watch the games, text each other about the results, and cheer on our team together. Some things just never change.
Now, onto this recipe..
Can I just say how good this loaf cake is? The cake itself is soft and moist, the lemons give it a sweet yet tangy flavor, and the poppy seeds inside almost pops in your mouth. None of the flavors are heavy and overpowering – every component does its part to make this a light, summery recipe. The glaze on top is really optional, although I do highly recommend it as it adds an extra punch of lemon flavor to it, and the fact that no on ever turns down a layer on yummy sugary glaze on top of any kind of dessert.
The best part? You can eat it for breakfast, as a afternoon (or mid-morning) snack, or even as a light dessert after dinner. I placed it under the “breakfast” category simply because I ate it more for breakfast as opposed to dessert, even though no one ever said you can’t eat cake for breakfast…..
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons poppy seeds
- 1 and 1/2 tablespoons lemon zest
- 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 1 egg, at room temperature
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 2/3 cup granulated sugar
- 1/3 cup plain Greek yogurt
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 6 tablespoons milk
- 4 tablespoons powdered sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
- 1 teaspoon milk
- 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat a 9x5" loaf pan with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, poppy seeds, lemon zest, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
- In a large bowl, combine the oil, egg, and vanilla extract. Mix to combine. Then whisk in the sugar, yogurt, and lemon juice until thoroughly incorporated. Alternate between adding the flour mixture and the milk (I added 1/3 of the flour, 1/2 of the milk, 1/3 of the flour, 1/2 of the milk, then the remaining 1/3 of the flour).
- Pour the batter in the loaf pan and bake for 45-50 minutes, or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. If you notice the top is browning too fast, cover the pan with a tented tin foil after the first 30-40 minutes.
- Cool the pan for at least 15 minutes, then turn onto a wired cooling rack to cool completely.
- While the cake is cooling, prepare the glaze by whisking all the glaze ingredients in a small bowl. Drizzle over the top of the cooled caked. Cake may be sliced and stored in an airtight container for up to 5 days.
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