Although I really like all my recipes equally, this lemon drizzle cake has a particular place in my coronary heart – suggestions suggests it’s gone down a storm with everybody from a mums and infants group in Hackney to a grasp patissière in Paris – principally, I believe, as a result of the ratio of effort to outcomes is skewed so closely within the cook dinner’s favour. Fluffy, but deliciously sticky, it’s a correct crowdpleaser.
Prep 20 min
Prepare dinner 50-55 min
Makes 1 loaf cake
175g butter, softened, plus a little bit additional to grease
2 unwaxed lemons
175g caster sugar
100g self-raising flour
75g floor almonds
A bit of milk
100g demerara sugar
1 Put together the tin
Grease a 2lb loaf tin (ie, one measuring about 23cm x 13cm x 7cm) with butter or oil, and line with greaseproof paper. Warmth the oven to 180C (160C fan)/350F/gasoline four.
Zest the lemons – if you happen to haven’t received unwaxed (or natural) ones, give them a very good scrub with sizzling water to take away a few of the wax first, as a result of this can give a greater flavour.
Line and grease a loaf tin, then zest and juice three lemons.
2 Soften the butter
In the event you’ve forgotten to take the butter out of the fridge, reduce it into cubes and depart it close to the nice and cozy oven or give it a number of good whacks with a rolling pin to assist it on its approach. (Microwaving will simply soften the skin, which isn’t ideally suited.) Put the cubed butter in a big bowl, or within the bowl of a meals mixer, with the caster sugar, a pinch of wonderful salt and half the lemon zest.
three Cream the butter and sugar
Use electrical beaters to beat the butter and sugar combine till it’s actually gentle and fluffy, scraping down the perimeters of the bowl as crucial; this could take about 5 minutes. You are able to do this with a wood spoon, however it would take some time, since you need to get as a lot air into the combination as potential.
Cream the butter, sugar, half the zest and a pinch of salt; get as a lot air within the combine as you possibly can. Then incorporate the eggs little by little.
four Add the eggs
Beat collectively the eggs in a jug, then beat them into the butter and sugar combination a little bit at a time, ensuring every addition is totally included earlier than including any extra. If the combination threatens to curdle at any level, add a little bit of the flour to carry it again to a easy consistency.
5 Incorporate the flour…
Tip the flour right into a sieve and sift it on prime of the butter and sugar combination – although this isn’t very important, it would assist to offer a lighter, fluffier consequence, so I’d advocate it. Use a big steel spoon gently to fold within the flour with a gradual, figure-of-eight movement, being cautious to knock as little air out of the combination as potential.
Sift within the flour, then gently fold it in, taking care to knock out as little air as potential, then pour into the tin.
6 … and the bottom almonds and milk
Put the bottom almonds in a bowl, give them a fast whisk to interrupt up any lumps, then fold into the batter in the identical approach because the flour. Regularly combine in simply sufficient milk to skinny down the batter to a consistency that can reluctantly drop off a spoon.
7 Pour into the tin and bake
Pour the batter into the ready tin and gently degree the highest. Put within the sizzling oven and bake for about 50-55 minutes, or till the highest is golden and risen, and a skewer pushed into the centre comes out clear, or at the very least with none moist batter clinging to it; a number of crumbs are wonderful.
Combine lemon juice and the remaining zest with demerara sugar.
eight Now for the drizzle
Juice each lemons and blend this with the demerara sugar and the remaining lemon zest. Go away the cake within the tin, and poke small holes evenly everywhere in the prime, then pour over the drizzle little by little, ready for it’s absorbed earlier than including any extra. Go away the cake to chill in its tin earlier than turning out.
Bake till risen and golden, then poke holes everywhere in the prime and pour over the juice, zest and sugar combination.
This cake is a simple one to customize: swap lemon for different citrus fruits; or add a touch of gin or vodka to the drizzle; or make a spiced model by bringing the demerara sugar to a boil with 100ml water, the lemon zest and a tablespoon of squashed cardamom pods till the sugar dissolves, then flip off the warmth and depart to infuse whereas the cake bakes.