Rose and Lemon Layer Cake

Rose and Lemon Layer Cake

Dessert crowns the soirée with sweetness. Rose and Lemon Layer Cake is just as enchanting as one might imagine, with ribbons of lemon curd cushioning fluffy cake subtly tinged with lemon zest and rose water. Rose frosting provides the final touch of splendor.

Rose and Lemon Layer Cake
Makes 1 (6-inch) cake
  • ½ cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon lemon zest
  • 2 large eggs
  • ½ teaspoon rose water
  • 1½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ⅛ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ cup whole milk
  • ¼ cup sour cream
  • 1 (11-ounce) jar lemon curd
  • Rose Frosting (recipe follows)
  1. Preheat oven to 350˚. Spray 2 (6-inch) round cake pans with baking spray with flour.
  2. In a large bowl, beat butter, sugar, and lemon zest with a mixer at medium-high speed until fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating until mixture is smooth. Beat in rose water.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and baking soda. Gradually add to butter mixture, alternately with milk, beginning and ending with flour mixture, beating just until mixture is smooth. Stir in sour cream. Spoon batter into prepared pans.
  4. Bake until a wooden pick inserted in centers comes out clean, 20 to 25 minutes. Let cool in pans for 10 minutes. Remove from pans, and let cool completely on wire racks. Using a serrated knife, cut cakes in half horizontally.
  5. Spread lemon curd in between cake layers. Spread a thin layer of Rose Frosting over top and sides of cake. Spoon remaining frosting into a pastry bag fitted with a large fluted tip*. Pipe rosettes over top and sides of cake. Cover and refrigerate for up to 3 days.
*We used an Ateco #829 decorating tip.

Rose Frosting
Makes approximately 5 cups
  • 1½ cups granulated sugar
  • 6 egg whites
  • 2 cups unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 teaspoon rose water
  • Pink paste food coloring
  1. In the top of a double boiler, whisk together sugar and egg whites until combined. Cook, without stirring, over simmering water until a candy thermometer registers 140˚.
  2. Immediately pour mixture into the work bowl of a heavy-duty stand mixer, and beat at high speed for 10 minutes. Reduce speed to medium-low, and add butter, 2 tablespoons at a time, beating just until combined after each addition. Beat in rose water until combined. Add food coloring until desired shade of buttercream is reached. Store, covered, at room temperature until ready to use.

For the full tea menu, see “Taking Tea with Mother” in the May/June 2019 issue, available on newsstands and at

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