Why infuse after the bake instead of adding as ingredient before?


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I was dying for a lemony dessert for my dinner party and made with great success a lemon pound cake loaf from an ancient copy of The Joy of Cooking. I liked the recipe because it called for the least amount of butter and sugar of the many recipes I reviewed. I like a recipe that's heavy on flavor without relying too much on fat and sugar.

After the bake, when the loaf was right out of the oven and still in the pan, the recipe said to poke holes all over it with a skewer and brush on a slurry of heated lemon juice and sugar. After that and a 10 min wait, I was to remove the loaf and poke holes on the bottom and brush, and then the sides and brush.

It worked out fine: so tasty, light crunchy outside, smooth yielding inside, delectably lemon flavor) but the process was little anxiety-provoking (will the loaf crack with all this handling and poking?) and time-consuming. QUESTION: Since baking is science, why can't I add the lemon juice and sugar slurry as ingredients before the bake to achieve the same flavor?
 
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I was dying for a lemony dessert for my dinner party and made with great success a lemon pound cake loaf from an ancient copy of The Joy of Cooking. I liked the recipe because it called for the least amount of butter and sugar of the many recipes I reviewed. I like a recipe that's heavy on flavor without relying too much on fat and sugar.

After the bake, when the loaf was right out of the oven and still in the pan, the recipe said to poke holes all over it with a skewer and brush on a slurry of heated lemon juice and sugar. After that and a 10 min wait, I was to remove the loaf and poke holes on the bottom and brush, and then the sides and brush.

It worked out fine: so tasty, light crunchy outside, smooth yielding inside, delectably lemon flavor) but the process was little anxiety-provoking (will the loaf crack with all this handling and poking?) and time-consuming. QUESTION: Since baking is science, why can't I add the lemon juice and sugar slurry as ingredients before the bake to achieve the same flavor?
it would interefere with the texture, the batter would be too wet.
Bakeries use lemon compound flavoring, its thick and doesn't change the texture of the raw batter.
The compounds don't taste as good either, they're just faster to use.
Old versions of joy of cooking were very good.
 
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Thanks for your reply. I wondered about that extra moisture. I'm not a super experienced baker. I will say this though, I am a better baker now that I'm older because, for me, age has brought patience and an ability to slow down and re-read before I add ingredients that may or may not be the right amount or thing. :)
 
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I found this out by accident.
I tried to make frosting with lemon jello....it was a failure but I tried to put it on anyways.....after waiting 10 minutes I decided to remove it but the cake really did soak up that lemon flavor. I will try holes in my next cake.
Happy mistake.
 
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I was dying for a lemony dessert for my dinner party and made with great success a lemon pound cake loaf from an ancient copy of The Joy of Cooking. I liked the recipe because it called for the least amount of butter and sugar of the many recipes I reviewed. I like a recipe that's heavy on flavor without relying too much on fat and sugar.

After the bake, when the loaf was right out of the oven and still in the pan, the recipe said to poke holes all over it with a skewer and brush on a slurry of heated lemon juice and sugar. After that and a 10 min wait, I was to remove the loaf and poke holes on the bottom and brush, and then the sides and brush.

It worked out fine: so tasty, light crunchy outside, smooth yielding inside, delectably lemon flavor) but the process was little anxiety-provoking (will the loaf crack with all this handling and poking?) and time-consuming. QUESTION: Since baking is science, why can't I add the lemon juice and sugar slurry as ingredients before the bake to achieve the same flavor?
Its infused after the bake because if you bake the lemon juice (or orange juice) into the cake you will not taste the lemon. The heat breaks down the flavor because there isn’t enough volatile oils in the juice to hold up in the high heat. The flavor is in the oil in the zest. So you have to add zest to the batter if you want to bake it into the cake for flavoring. But if the cake does not have a lot of fat in the formula, you can infuse flavor with juice by making a simple syrup and adding it after the cake is baked. Actually can add a lot of different flavors to the simple syrup. My two favorites are elderflower cordial and lemon verbena.
 

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