Lemon + Cracked Pepper Pound Cake with a Rose Water Glaze (gluten-free)

It's Spring Break which means tons of booze and tanning and beaches and OMG MeXiCoOoOoO woooooo!.  

Ha, just kidding, I'd rather go on a date with Ted Cruz than deal with kids my age discovering mezcal for the first time. Spring Break for me has meant having time to hang out with close friends, sleeping in until 10, reworking my recipes page so that it actually has some kind of logic, and maybeeeee one too many wine-filled dinners.  Oh, and also making pound cake.  I'm going to get through this entire post without making some lame dirty joke about pound cake, I promise.  

This week also brought some exciting food blog-world stuff with the announcement of the nominees for Saveur Magazine's food blog awards.  If you have a minute, go vote for your favorite blog!  I know most of the nominees (not in real life, but ya know, like blogging buddies - hi, friends!) which has made the voting process emotionally traumatizing.  I JUST WANT YOU ALL TO WIN WHY CAN'T THIS END IN A MEAN GIRLS MOMENT WHERE WE BREAK A CROISSANT INTO A MILLION TINY PIECES AND YOU ALL GET A LITTLE NIBBLE!?  

*dries tears with my prom dress*  

Anyway, about this cake.  I've been on a bit of a sweet/savory gender-bending mission lately, working to bring the two elements together to redefine traditional treats.  Now, before you tell me I'm ruining the sanctity of baked goods, let me explain.  I think we've gotten far  too comfortable categorizing things as either sweet or savory, when in reality some stuff can fall right in the middle and still be absolutely wonderful.  This cake has pepper in it.  Yes, I know it sounds weird - and it kind of is - but in a delicious way.  The pepper adds this wonderful zing and spicyness towards the end of each bite, clearing the palate for the next mouthful.  The rose water glaze helps balance the lightness of the lemon flavor with the pop of the pepper, and it all comes together to be yummy as all hell.  I promise.  Another fun part about there being pepper in this is that it looks just like poppy seed.  If you're trying to crank out some belated April fool's pranks, this cake may be the way to do it!  For those of you not using this recipe as a prank - I'd recommend eating it as breakfast with a smear of cream cheese, as an afternoon snack with a mug of black tea, or top it with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream for dessert. 

A Few Quick Notes: 

  •  As for the number of gluten free things on the blog lately, you can blame Alice Medrich and her wonderful book, Flavor Flours.  This damn book has my mind reeling with all of the possibilities!  There are so many great non-wheat flours out there and I'm going to start using them more often.  
  • Matt and I sold some Probably Baking goodies at Little Flea Nola this past weekend!  Thanks a million times over to all of my NOLA readers who came out to see us, y'all really made my day! 

Have a good week sweet angels!


Gluten Free Lemon & Cracked Pepper Pound Cake with Rose Water Glaze


  • 2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1.5 cups granulated sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1/3 cup lemon juice
  • Zest of 4 large (like, baseball-sized) lemons (or 6 - 8 small lemons)
  • 3/4 cup plain, whole fat yogurt
  • 2 Tablespoons fresh(!!!) cracked pepper
  • 1.5 cups brown rice flour
  • .5 cup oat flour
  • 1 t baking powder
  • 1 t salt
  1. Preheat oven to 350* F and grease a loaf pan.  I'd recommend also lining the greased pan with parchment paper for easy removal of the baked cake.  
  2. In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugar together until fluffy, about 3-4 minutes.
  3. Once it's fluffy, add the eggs one at a time while beating.
  4. Stop the mixer and add the yogurt, lemon juice, and zest.
  5. Beat just to combine.
  6. In a separate bowl whisk together the flour, salt, pepper, and baking powder.
  7. Add to mixer and beat to combine.  Make sure not to over-beat, you really just want everything to be fully incorporated.
  8. Pour the batter into the prepared pan.
  9. Bake for 40 minutes at 350* and then lower the temperature to 325* and bake for 30 minutes longer, or until a toothpick comes out of the center crumb-free.  


  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 t rose water
  • 1 T whole milk
  1. Whisk together  all ingredients until smooth.
  2. Pour on top of the cooled pound cake.

Candied Rose Petals

I used this method from Bon Appetit, which basically involves buying organic (not sprayed) roses, peeling the petals, brushing them with raw egg white and coating them in superfine sugar.  Let dry for a few hours in the fridge before using!