This zucchini cake has a deliciously moist crumb, an inventive goat cheese frosting, and a zesty glaze. A spectacular way to use summer squashes!
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I don’t make layered cakes nearly often enough. In fact, before my son’s birth, there have been years of no cake at all. Well, there were cupcakes and carrot cake, but festive layered cakes? None. And now, between the fact that there are only three of us (including a tiny one) and that E isn’t a huge fan of cakes (yes, those people exist), I usually make exactly one cake a year—when my son’s birthday comes around.
But I love cake, and I admire people who make gorgeous cakes, such as Tessa Huff from the blog Style Sweet CA. Tessa is an American-born baker who currently lives in Vancouver, Canada. Her spectacular book, Layered: Baking, Building, and Styling Spectacular Cakes is filled with innovative cake recipes, from the casual to the adventurous. All cakes are layered, of course, and in my opinion, even those that are grouped under “Casual Cakes” chapter are worthy of celebrations. Case in point: this Lemon Zucchini Cake with Goat Cheese Frosting and Lemon Glaze.
What attracted me to this zucchini cake is that it seemed like a delightful spin on a carrot cake. Indeed, the zucchini acts as a carrot would to produce a moist crumb, and the icing is made with cheese. Presenting a tall layered cake like this one instantly makes you look like a star baker. A few weeks ago, I hosted friends for a dinner party, so I seized the opportunity to make this zucchini cake, knowing there would be many dessert enthusiasts to help us get through it. Plus, the goal of the dinner was to celebrate the start of the lobster season, so a lemon-infused dessert sounded absolutely perfect to end such a lavish meal.
As spectacular as this zucchini cake looks, it’s actually quite easy to make. The batter comes together by simply mixing the dry ingredients into the wet ones, folding in the grated zucchini last. The finger-licking good frosting uses goat cheese instead of classic cream cheese, which gives it a subtle kick and the distinctive cheesy flavor that goes so well with denser moist cakes. The final, genius touch comes in the form of a tart lemon glaze that drips onto the sides of the cake, making for a gorgeous presentation and a lovely zesty punch. This zucchini cake is a truly a memorable treat.
The book Layered: Baking, Building, and Styling Spectacular Cakes includes a total of 150 recipes, which are divided into chapters that range from “Classic Cakes” and “Chocolate Cakes” to “Adventurous Cakes” and “Whimsical Cakes.” Her breathtaking photography will make anyone weak in the knees, and the clever combination of flavors proves that there’s a cake for every occasion. Tessa’s book sure convinced me that there should be way more cake in our lives! I believe some of her recipes could even have the power to transform E into a part-time cake lover. He sure did like this cake, and I’ve bookmarked many more for their life-changing potential (I’m looking at you, Butterscotch Bourbon Cake.)
If you’re a novice baker, you’ll find great tips to get you started and learning the basics of cake baking. But if you’re a cake enthusiast, you’ll also find instructions to challenge you to bake more intricate creations. Every dessert lover should own a copy of this book, even if it’s just to drool over for the photos.
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Disclosure notice: I was offered a copy of Layered: Baking, Building, and Styling Spectacular Cakes and the opportunity to host a giveaway on my blog by Food Bloggers of Canada. As always, companies never dictate the content I create, or the opinions I express. I only use products I genuinely believe in or feature books I truly love.
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