Monday, February 23, 2015

Lemon Posset Shortcakes

                               This week the Alpha Bakers made Lemon Posset Shortcakes, which are genoise cakes with a  creamy Meyer lemon topping.  And since forever, I have had horrible luck with genoise.

So it was not with excitement that I began The Bake this week. Still, how can anyone be cranky when these beauties are in season?

Meyer lemons are a cross between a lemon and common orange or mandarin. Grown in pots as ornamental trees in China, they were brought to the United States in 1908 by Frank Meyer during a trip with the United States Department of Agriculture.  

Thank you Frank!  

But it was Alice Walters and Martha Stewart who popularized the lovely, mild lemons in the late 1990's.  For being such delicate things, they are a hearty tree that yields fruit within four years after planted from seed.  They are capable of producing thousands of lemons.  I know one thing, they have vicious spikes to protect their fruit.  

Years ago we transplanted a Meyer lemon tree from a lady who was determined to chop it down.  Nothing could persuade her otherwise, not even a batch of Rose's lemon curd, which she loved.  The neighbor agreed to let us move it next door to my mother in law's former home.  It lost its leaves and a harsh below freezing cold snap threatened its very existence.  And then it burst into bloom.  It was truly one of the most amazing things I have ever seen.  The scent was glorious. 

  They can even be grown indoors.  

Ramekins for the genoise sponge cakes which worked well.  They turned out easily. 

                Unexpected surprise!  This time they didn't have any flour balls and rose to a good height. Out of Baker's spray, I used coconut spray oil and dusted with the Wondra flour.

Once cooled,  a very sharp knife easily cut out the tops to hold the cream, thanks to Monica's posting on Facebook.  I missed seeing that bit in the book.  This is what is incredibly helpful about the Alpha Bakers FB page; helping to avert disaster..

Brushed with lemon syrup and then sealed with apple jelly, they were ready for the Lemon Posset which had been chilling in the refrigerator, separating into two layers.

The l-o-n-g wait was finally over.  Well, it wasn't really because they were supposed to set in the frig between the first layering of the thicker Posset and the second layer of the thinner Posset, but I missed that part, too.  I also missed the instruction not to use the watery Posset at the very bottom of the dish and happily spooned it over the top and down the sides. The presentation wasn't as professional looking but it didn't matter.  They tasted like an upscale Twinkie with the most amazing exquisite lemon cream.  This is definitely on the Make Again list but next time, no fiddling about with individual ramekins.  Too many requests for seconds!


  1. Glad I was able to avert a disaster. I also will be lost without our FB page... the amount of information we share is priceless... its like a cheat sheet before we do the recipes.

  2. What a great story about the lemon tree, I am so happy you got to save it. great post.

  3. Your shortcakes look wonderful! Even if you forgot to let the posset set in the fridge, it is ok, just as delicious! :) Yup, I have the small KA mixer bowl for such recipes that require small batter.

  4. lovely story about your meyer lemon tree and i love the history! you are inspiring me to grow a little tree in my house. lovely shortcakes, although i thought them more upscale than a twinkie and now all i can think about is twinkies!

  5. ב''ה

    I also enjoyed your lemon tree story. Your cakes look delish.

  6. I had a lemon tree years ago and you have inspired me to grow one again; thank you for that - maybe two if I can find a Meyer starter are always an inspiration... Thank you for that - loved your story and the end product looks delightful

  7. Hooray for no flour balls! I loved reading the history of Meyer lemons.

  8. Love the info. on the Meyer lemons. Cakes looks yummy!

  9. I love your story and the info. This my first time trying Meyer lemon and they are delicious.

  10. Hi Vicki--great post and I love the potted lemon tree! I wish I had room in the house! Not enough sunny windows. I loved the recipe--the lemon flavor is so fresh and the shortcakes were feather light. Yours look beautiful!

  11. So educational. Loved the posset so much - can't wait to have it again.

    Patricia @ ButterYum