Great Gatsby recipes, beverage

Chef Ron Block shares his recipe for lemon cakes and gin rickey as his pairings with the classic book "The Great Gatsby."

Daisy's Elegant Lemon Cakes


2 cups flour
2 tsp. baking powder
½ tsp. salt
½ cup butter, room temperature
1 cup sugar
3 eggs, room temperature
½ tsp. vanilla
2 tbsp. lemon zest
1 drop yellow food coloring
8 oz. sour cream
¼ cup fresh lemon juice
Sifted powdered sugar
Raspberries for garnish
Candied lemon peel (see below)
Raspberry lemon sauce (see below)


  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease and flour a 12-muffin tin. 
  • In bowl combine flour, baking powder, salt and set aside
  • In another bowl, beat the butter and sugar until fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, beating with each addition. Stir in vanilla, food coloring and lemon zest.
  • In a third bowl, combine sour cream and lemon juice. Alternate flour mixture and sour cream mixture additions to butter mixture, beating with each addition.
  • Fill muffin tins ½ -2/3 full with batter and bake for 15-20 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
  • Take cakes out of tin and cool on wire rack. While cooling combine another 1/3 cup lemon juice and 2/3 cup water and brush the top of the cakes as they cool.


Candied Lemon Peel

Use a zesting tool (or paring knife) that pulls 2 inch long peel sections and take skin from three lemons
Dissolve 2 cups of sugar in 3 cups of water over medium heat. When dissolved, add the lemon peel, reduce heat to low and simmer for up to 2 hours, making sure the peel is translucent.

Remove to dry on wire rack.

Raspberry lemon sauce

Place 2 tbsp. sugar, 6 oz. fresh raspberries and 1 tbsp. fresh lemon juice in a small saucepan and bring to a boil, stirring often and mashing the berries. At the point of boiling, continue for 2 minutes, then remove from heat. Put mixture in food processor and process until smooth. Strain the mixture through a fine sieve into a bowl so seeds are removed.

Place a lemon cake on a plate and a stripe of raspberry lemon sauce along one side. Sift a small amount of powdered sugar over the top. Place candied lemon peel and a raspberry on top and serve.

Gatsby's Gin Rickey

2 oz. gin
Juice of 1 lime
Lime wedges
2 oz. chilled sparkling water, or to taste

Stir gin, lime juice and sparkling water with ice and strain to martini or highball glass. Float lime wedge in the drink and serve.