Lemon and Thyme Yogurt Bundt Cake
Today I am happily sharing this Lemon and Thyme Yogurt Bundt Cake. The cake is a perfect combination of both sweet lemon and minty-earthy thyme. This time, I add freshly chopped thyme straight into the cake batter, making the thyme flavor shine through everything. It is actually a fairly mild in flavor, the cake is not that sweet and overwhelming. But If I am being honest, I think the real star is the lemon glaze on top. The lemon glaze not only adds the crisp on the outer layer of the cake, but also refreshing sweet and tart flavor that compliments the whole cake.
Baking with Thyme
Thyme is a herb of the mint family with thin sprigs, and small tiny spear-shaped green leaves. This herb has been a staple in Southern European and Mediterranean cuisines. It is available in both fresh or dried and we primarily use its leaves in cooking. Adding these leaves adds an aromatic woodsy and earthy flavor to dishes without being overwhelming.
Thyme retains its flavor on drying better than many other herbs. Dried thyme is a suitable substitution for fresh in many cases. You can use roughly one-third of the volume of fresh thyme called for in the recipe if you want to substitute dried thyme for fresh. Dried thyme can be found in most major supermarkets, stored in an air-tight container.
Baking with Yogurt
Yogurt is food prepared by fermenting milk with bacteria or known as yogurt cultures, which gives yogurt thick texture and tart flavor. Most people like to eat yogurt as it is as the best nutritional value is maintained when you avoid killing the live bacteria and destroying the enzymes. Yogurt is also an excellent diary to incorporate into baked goods. Although the benefits of the bacteria and enzymes will be lost, other benefits still remain.
Yogurt contains acid, which when combined with baking soda produces small air bubbles in the batter and creates air pockets when the batter touches heat. Heat produces a quick burst of bubbles, and that’s what really makes yogurt cake spongy and airy. Yogurt also retain good amount of the moisture and fat in the batter. After baking, the finished product will be moist and tender.
Tips on Making Lemon and Thyme Yogurt Cake
1. Choose the right yogurt
I find each yogurt brands taste different from each other. Therefore, choose the one to your liking and it is important to make sure you use whole-milk plain yogurt.
2. Fresh thyme substitute
Dried thyme is a suitable substitution for this recipe. Dried thyme can be found in most major supermarkets, stored in an air-tight container. Use one-third of how much fresh thyme called for in the recipe as dried thyme has stronger flavor than the fresh one.
3. Do not over stirring the batter
Over stirring the batter may create a fragile crust and tough, rubbery cake. It means that you should stop mixing as soon as you cannot see the ingredient that you just added. When you over stirring the batter, the gluten in the flour forms elastic gluten strands, which resulting in a dense and chewy texture.
4. Grease the bundt mould properly
The secret to getting your bundt cake out of the pan cleanly every time is to create a nonstick protective layer between the pan and the batter. Hence, even though you use non-stick or silicon bundt mould, ensure that you butter and flour the mould before pouring the batter.
5. Cool the cake in the pan for 10 minutes after baking
When the cake is done, allow it to cool in the pan for 10 minutes. This allows the cake to become firm enough to remove from the pan without breaking apart. After that, invert the pan onto the rack, lift it off and let the cake continue to cool on the rack.
Lemon and Thyme Yogurt Bundt Cake
- 1 3/4 cups granulated sugar (350 gr)
- 3/4 cup unsalted butter softened (170 gr)
- 2 tsp grated lemon zest (from 2 lemons)
- 3 eggs
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 3 cups all purpose flour (360 gr)
- 1 tbsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 cup whole-milk plain yogurt (250 gr)
- 2 tbsp fresh thyme leaves roughly chopped
- 1 1/2 cups confectioners sugar (165 gr)
- 2 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 2 tbsp boiling water
- 1 tsp fresh thyme leaves
Preheat oven to 340 F / 170°C. Grease and flour a 24 cm bundt pan. Set aside.
In a medium bowl, combine all purpose flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
Using a hand mixer or stand mixer, cream together butter and sugar until pale and fluffy. Beat in lemon zest, eggs, and vanilla extract until incorporated.
Add half of dry ingredients to the batter, beating gently until combined. Gently beat in half the yogurt. Mix in remaining flour and yogurt. Beat until the batter well combined. Do not overmix.
Fold in chopped fresh thyme leaves into the batter with spatula. Transfer the batter to the bundt pan.
Bake for 50 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the cake comes clean.
Allow the cake to cool in the pan for 10 minutes. Gently invert the cake on to a platter and back on to the wire rack to cool completely. Glaze the cake when completely cool.
In a small bowl, whisk together sifted confectioners sugar, lemon juice, and boiling water until incorporated. Pour the glaze onto the cake. The glaze will harden slightly in a while.
Sprinkle fresh thyme leaves onto the cake for decoration.