Maybe you can also add lemon zest which will help to counter the sweetness. Rose uses 6 oz butter + 2/3 c. sour cream in her yellow cake for 8.5 oz flour—which is about equal fat to that cake with its butter + cc + sour cream + heavy cream (I don’t have BCC in front of me, but her ratios are usually pretty similar across butter cakes), so it seems to me that he’s just adding a whole bunch of sugar and not lessening the fat much at all. 80% of the non-Rose cakes I see use equal volume sugar & flour, which is 2x weight of suagar:flour, so his sugar content is pretty “mainstream normal.”
BCC is also my fave of Rose’s yellows, too. That and the Golden Lux Butter Cake!
I tried to estimate some comparisons. In the CakeLove cake I estimated the total fat at 5.2 oz, or 61% bakers percentage. The liquid in the CakeLove cake looked really small, so I tried estimating that, but if I assume liquid is supplied by cream cheese, sour cream, milk and so on I end up concluding that there is about 7 oz of liquid, or 86% relative to the flour. In BCC the liquid is about 71% and the fat is 43%.
That said, I don’t get the difference between the lemony hollows and the lemon disappearing. I think I get the lemony hollows concept, if I’m imagining it right, but not the disappearing in the BCC. Can you describe that more?
Unfortunately it was a couple months ago and so my memory is a bit vague. My daughter asked for this cake for her birthday this weekend, which rekindled my interest in trying to improve it.
As I recall the CakeLove version was rather dry with a fine crumb and it had hollow pockets where the lemon chunks were, with concentrated lemon baked on their edges. The BCC version did not have pockets at all. The lemons were hard to notice were blended smoothly into the cake. I don’t think they sank to the bottom, so it wasn’t a support issue. But they didn’t get the moisture sucked out of them like happened with the CakeLove cake. The BCC cake was very moist, maybe even moister than normal, which was a big contrast to the CakeLove cake. Some lemon juice may have escaped from the lemon sections and gotten mixed into the BCC batter which might have made it more acidic than normal.
Note that I’ve never noticed adding lemon zest to really have any effect on a cake. Maybe I need to zest 15 lemons or something, but it just seems to disappear. So it wouldn’t serve to balance the sweetness. The original recipe does call for lemon lemon oil. I suppose I could try soaking the cake with lemon juice after baking.
I also noticed that this recipe uses 1/4 t. baking soda and, if I remember correctly, BCC uses baking powder. The soda may have neutralized something in the lemons to make it work better.
BCC is 4 egg yolks, 2/3 cup buttermilk 7 oz flour 7 oz sugar 1 T baking powder, 4 oz butter.
Finally, I see he uses AP flour (with just a bit of corn starch) and Rose uses cake flour. That could have something to do with it, too—maybe total cake flour can’t support the lemon pieces?
While Charles T. is correct in that it makes sense to change one thing at a time, I’m thinking the flour and the leavening differences (although I forget what the leavning in BCC is exactly) might be the culpret preventing this BCC version from working. I know, in Rose’s, if you want to use AP flour, you can usually avoid a dip by reducing BP by 1/4 t. per 9x2 inch layer, so you can try that, although the texture is still a bit different—a fluffy, but slightly larger and denser/moister (you can interpret that either way) crumb.
I actually usually bake the BCC with bleached AP flour. I like the resulting coarser crumb. I had the idea of trying with the Perfect Poundcake recipe, as the CakeLove cake came outo with a pound cake sort of texture.