Make A Wish!! Limoncello Cake

Today is my sister’s birthday!  If I could make a wish, I wish that we were together to celebrate her birthday.  In fact, I wish we lived closer to share every birthday, every holiday and all the days in between!  Just over 10 years ago, I left my home town to start a fresh new life with my two young children.   I have no regrets except….missing my family.  Coming from an Italian family where every event was celebrated with nieces, nephews, cousins, aunts, uncles, you name it they were invited; to small, shall I say “intimate” gatherings of three, my children and I.

My sister and I are 10 years apart from each other; yes I’ll say it, I am the younger one.  We always were close in a little sister / big sister way but as we got older and both had families and children, the closer we became.  Now, with our children pretty well grown, I miss her the most.  Once a year visits, if that, are just not enough.  But…

Today is your birthday!  And here, my sister, is your virtual birthday cake!  We all know you are not one with a passion for cooking or baking.  If my sister was ever asked to bring the dessert, we always knew a bundt cake was on its way!  She’d whip up that box cake mix; pour it into the pan, no layering or frosting required!

These adorable little bundt cakes were baked with love for you.  Made from scratch with lots of light, citrus flavor and a shot or two of Limoncello over the warm baked cakes absorbs even more lemony tipsy goodness!

The candles were lit and I made a special wish just for you.  Happy Birthday!

Limoncello Cake

2 1/3 cup cake flour

1 tablespoon and 1 teaspoon baking powder

1 pinch salt

½ cup butter, softened, room temperature

½ cup mango/banana puree *

1 cup sugar

4 eggs, room temperature

Lemon zest from 2 large organic lemons

½ cup milk

½ cup Limoncello

For the glaze:  ¾ cup powdered sugar, 1 -2 tablespoons Limoncello

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Grease and flour a bundt pan.  Combine the cake flour, baking powder and sea salt together and set aside.  In a large mixing bowl, beat the butter until creamy.  Mix in the mango/banana puree and sugar and beat until fluffy.  Add the eggs in one at a time, beating well after each addition.  Mix in the lemon zest.

Alternate mixing in 1/3 of the flour, 1/3 of the milk and repeat until all is mixed in.  Do not overmix.  Pour into the prepared pan, leveling the mix.

Bake for 40 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.  Remove from oven and allow the cake to cool about 1 hour.  Flip the cake over onto a cake plate to release the cake from the pan and then return back to the pan.  Generously poke holes throughout the cake and pour 1/3 of the Limoncello over the cake.  Allow it to seep in for about 10 minutes, then pour another third repeating until all Limoncello is used.  Let cake set in pan to soak up all the Limoncello, then flip over to plate.

For the glaze:  gently warm 1-2 tablespoons of Limoncello and mix into the powder sugar until smooth.  Pour over cake and allow to set.

*Note:  My mother’s recipe used 2 sticks of butter.  I like to replace 1 stick with a fruit puree.  I purchase organic baby food in natural fruit flavors to substitute for the butter.  Works great, adds another flavor and is less fattening!  p.s.  I also use baby fruit to add to my oatmeal, fruit pies, quick bread, muffins or cobblers!

26 thoughts on “Make A Wish!! Limoncello Cake

  1. My wife is comes from an Italian family as well and I know what you mean about the importance of everyone coming together to celebrate events. 🙂 The cakes look fantastic!

  2. These little cakes are adorable! They sound divine! I am also 10 years younger than my sister and love her to pieces! Even more coincidental, her birthday is in 3 days 🙂

  3. What a lovely post – I felt all emotional reading it as I can relate completely to your feelings. What a fantastic cake(s) to make for her…although whenever I hear the words Bundt Cake I think of the movie “My Big Fat Greek Wedding” tee hee!!!

  4. I read your post and spent the last 10 minutes reminiscing about my family’s get-togethers. I love my life here but nothing will ever replace those family celebrations. I hope it’s not too long before you can spend some time back home.

  5. This is too cute. Wish you could be with your sister too, but happy birthday to her! I’m sure she wishes she could have a bite of one of these cakes. Limoncello!? Amazing.

  6. Awww! That is so cute! I just love how you baked these bunt cakes in honor of your sister. I’m sure she loved it from miles away. I know I am! Sisters are the greatest!

  7. What a sweet way to remember your sisters birthday. It’s hard when we are apart from family celebrations. The little cakes are so cute and delicious sounding. I like the tip about the baby food. Thank you!

  8. Happy Birthday to your sister – I can so relate to the sadness of distance. I have a dear sister across the country and often wish that we could live closer together. I like the lightness and simplicity of bundt cakes too and the lemon glaze is just – sorry, it has to be said – the cherry on the cake! Beautiful tribute to your sister.

  9. The cakes look amazing and so pretty and i love the addition of the limoncello. One of my favorite drinks and flavors! Your sister is one lucky sister to have you. Hope she has a great birthday

  10. Sorry it took so long to write a post. I am so happy and grateful for this beautiful tribute! When I first saw this I could not stop crying!! It was such a wonderful surprise and birthday wish…especially with those lemoncello bundt cakes! I wish I could have been there in Florida eating them with you. I am so blessed to have a sister like you! You’re amazing Linda!! I would also like to thank all of those who wished me a Happy Birthday on your blog!

  11. I’m hearing an awful lot about limoncello these days from you and Greg as well… Time to check it out for myself finally I think. The cakes looks wonderful! I wish I lived closer to my family too. I love celebrating events with family and it’s difficult these days 🙁

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