Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Gather your ingredients so that you have everything close at hand on the counter or table. Prepare your ingredients. Using a fine-grated zester, zest one large lemon. Place in a prep bowl. With a knife and cutting board, slice lemon and then squeeze the juice from it with a lemon juicer. Pour juice into a prep bowl for later use. (You will need a total of 3 tablespoons for the cake and the icing.)Remove the leaves from 1-2 thyme sprigs, enough to make 1 tablespoon.
In a large mixing bowl, cream together the softened butter and granulated sugar on high speed for 2-3 minutes. Add lemon juice and lemon zest. Then add large whole eggs, one at a time, beating well between each.
In a small bowl, combine the all-purpose flour, fresh thyme, salt, and baking powder. Add to creamed mixture alternately with buttermilk, until mixed well.
Pour into a greased 9"x5" loaf pan. Bake in preheated oven for 80-90 minutes until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
Cool for 10 minutes before removing the cake from the loaf pan. Cool on a wire rack.
To Make the Lemon Glaze:
In a small bowl, whisk together the powdered sugar, whole milk, and freshly squeezed lemon juice until it's smooth and silky.
Pour the lemon glaze over the still warm cake. Garnish with sprigs of fresh thyme. Makes 1 loaf.
*Unless otherwise indicated, all recipes on this site use salted butter.