Mother's Day Must-Have: Sweet & Tangy Pink Lemonade Cake

Pink Lemonade Cake

This Pink Lemonade cake is a moist, fluffy cake flavoured with lemon and raspberry. The tangy lemonade flavoured buttercream filling is paired with raspberry jam for a moreish sweet and tangy butter cake! It is perfect for Mother's Day coming up. I called her Rosanna.

Pink lemonade is a variation of lemonade that has a pink color instead of the traditional yellow color. It is usually made with the same ingredients as regular lemonade (lemon juice, sugar, and water) but the key difference is the addition of a red or pink coloring agent, which gives the drink its signature hue. In 1912, the New York Times published an obituary for Henry E. Allott, a former Chicago resident who had run away to join the circus in his youth. The obituary credited Allott with inventing pink lemonade, a variation of the classic lemonade recipe. The story goes that while preparing a big batch of regular lemonade, Allott accidentally dropped some red cinnamon candies into the mixture, resulting in a delightful pink hue. This happy accident gave birth to the blushing beverage we now know as pink lemonade.

Pink Lemonade Cake

There are actually a few different ways to add color to pink lemonade. One option is to use a fruit juice, such as cranberry or raspberry that not only provides the pink color but also adds a subtle fruity flavor. Another option is to use a syrup like grenadine, which is a sweet pomegranate-based syrup that adds both color and flavor. Or you can just use a few drops of pink food colouring. I have a recipe for a rose flavoured lemonade tinted pink. Pink lemonade made using juice has a slightly different taste than regular lemonade thanks to the added fruit. I always have raspberries in the freezer and raspberry jam so I used it although you can use any rubied or pinkish coloured fruit and jam that you have.

This pink lemonade cake has a moist, light butter cake tinted pink and is filled with a tangy, zingy lemony buttercream and raspberry jam. It is then smothered with that zingy buttercream and decorated with pieces of raspberry and slices of lemon. The recipe below is for a 15cm or 6 inch cake.

Pink Lemonade Cake

How to get that zingy lemon flavour: I love it when lemon baked good really taste like lemon and have a tart sour flavour to balance the sugar in them. I used LorAnn's lemonade flavouring oil. I also use finely grated lemon zest, lemon juice and citric acid. The latter is my secret weapon for zingy lemon flavours in cakes and slices like these Lemon Coconut Bars. It's an easy to find ingredient at the supermarket. Just look in the baking section. You can use it in place of lemons in a recipe or to add acidity to a dish and it is also used in preserving.

Other Lemon Cakes: Lemonade Cake, Lemon Chiffon Cake, Lemon Cloud Cake, Lemon Delicious Cheesecake, Yuzu Lemonade Pound Cake, Bitter Lemon Poppyseed Cake, Lemon Flower Cake and Lemon Blackberry Cake. Find more delicious lemon recipes here.

We are celebrating Mother's Day with the Elliotts this year. My parents are now living overseas in Singapore so my mother won't be there. We used to do a combined Mother's day but even without my family this will be a big celebration with lots of mothers because Mr NQN's sister Araluen now has an entirely new and very large group of in laws and there are five mothers in that family so plus partners and children it will be a massive celebration. And I'm being counted as a mum because I am mother to two puppies because dog mums count too.

Pink Lemonade Cake

Mother's Day is usually just combined with my birthday which happens around the same time. But I do insist on a random little present from Mr NQN: a packet of strawberry and cream Lindor balls (not sponsored, I'm addicted and buy bags of them when they're on sale). I don't want any other flavour and he knows that this is the perfect gift guaranteed to make me happy.

Chocolates and cake don't work with Mr NQN's mother Tuulikki. She is phobic of both and looks terrified if you offer her them. But we have discovered something that she loves. One day we gave her a bag of potatoes as we had a surplus of them. We get them in our vege box and I don't cook them that often and so I offered her a bag. Her eyes lit up. "I LOVE potatoes!" she said giddy with delight. She took the bag excitedly and peered inside. I've never seen her so excited about a gift before quite honestly and I was shook. So now the potatoes go to Tuulikki who adores them. Who knew that something as humble as a potato would be so loved?

So tell me Dear Reader, what are you doing for Mother's Day this year? Is there a random thing that you like to receive as a gift?

Pink Lemonade Cake

Pink Lemonade Cake

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An Original Recipe by Lorraine Elliott

Preparation time: 45 minutes plus cooling time

Cooking time: 40 minutes

Serves: 6-8

For Cake

  • 2 cups/300g/10.6ozs. cake flour*
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon bicarb soda
  • 185g/6ozs caster or superfine sugar
  • 230g/8ozs butter, softened
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 cup/250ml/8.8flozs buttermilk
  • Finely grated zest of 1 large lemon
  • Lemonade flavouring OR 1/4 cup/60ml/2flozs lemon juice

For Frosting

  • 180g/6ozs. butter, room temperature
  • 600g/21ozs icing sugar, sifted
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • Pink food colouring
  • 1 teaspoon citric acid (can be found at the supermarket in baking section)
  • 100g/3.5ozs. raspberry jam
  • 3 frozen raspberries
  • 1/2 lemon, cut into thin slices

Cake flour can be bought at the supermarket. You can also make it at home. To make 1 cup/150g/5.2ozs of cake flour replace 2 tablespoons of plain all purpose flour with cornflour/fine cornstarch and whisk well. I usually mix up a big batch of this and keep it in a container ready for baking cakes as it produces a softer texture.

Step 1 - Preheat oven to 130C/266F (very low oven). Line 2 x 15cm/6inch tins with parchment on the base and sides. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a beater attachment mix the flour, baking powder, bicarb of soda and sugar together. Whisk the eggs with the buttermilk, lemon zest and lemon flavouring in a jug.

Pink Lemonade Cake

Step 2 - Beat in the butter until smooth. Then add the egg milk mixture until it looks like a cake batter. Divide into the two tins and smooth over the top with an angled palette knife. Bake for 35-40 minutes or until the centre springs back when touched gently. Cool completely.

Step 3 - Beat the butter using an electric mixer for 1 minute or until smooth. Add the icing sugar and beat on low speed at first and then increase and add the lemon juice, pink colouring (go gently on the pink, you can always add more but you can't take it out) and citric acid. Beat for 4 minutes or until fluffy.

Pink Lemonade Cake
Alternating circles of buttercream and jam

Pink Lemonade Cake
Frosting the side of the cake

Step 4 - Place the buttercream into a large piping bag and place the jam into a small piping bag. Place one cake on the cake stand or cake board and pipe concentric circles in icing as shown with gaps in between. In the gaps pipe the raspberry jam. Place the other cake on top and then pipe the frosting over the sides of the cake. Smooth with an angled spatula. Then pipe icing on top and make swirls with the spatula. Smash the frozen raspberries and decorate with the pieces and lemon slices.

Pink Lemonade Cake

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