Week 4 – The lemon drizzle cake

Week 4, time to bake.

I have posted a recipe for a lemon drizzle cake before but I believe that this may be the “one”.

Every time I bake a lemon drizzle I have a problem with it. Under baked is my usual issue but struggle to avoid this without burning the edges and top to a cinder. Anyway my previous post for a Nigella lemon drizzle can be found here, you can see from the pictures that it was definitely on the scorched side. It did taste ok but it wasn’t great.

This recipe can be found in the first Bake off book. This is the book that also gave me the best chewy ginger cookie recipe, click here for that one.

This lemon drizzle recipe calls for the all in one method. It’s not a method I have used really but it truly is about as easy a cake to mix as you can get. As long as you have some sort of electric mixer device 🙂

Ingredients:

  • For the cake mixture
  • 200g unsalted butter, very very soft
  • 250g caster sugar
  • 3 medium eggs, beaten at room temp
  • finely grated zest of 2 medium unwaxed lemons
  • 250g self raising flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 100ml room temp milk ( I substituted butter milk as my preference for cakes)
  • for the topping
  • 100g caster sugar (I substituted icing sugar, works fine)
  • juice of 2 medium unwaxed lemons
  • finely grated zest of 1 lemon

A 20cm Springform deep round cake tin, greased and lined with greaseproof paper

Method:

  • Love, love, love this method. Do make sure your butter is super soft and your flour is sifted.
  • Preheat your oven to 180 degrees c
  • Simply put all the ingredients in a bowl and using either a food mixer or hand electric mixer. Blitz till it resembles cake mix.
  • Dollop your batter into the tin, lightly smooth into the edges, and bake till golden and a skewer inserted into the cake comes out clean. Recipe calls for 50-60 mins.
  • Your oven may mean you need slightly more or slightly less 🙂 start checking after 35 mins 🙂 My oven is definitely on the feisty side and so I probably could have taken my cake out 5 minutes before I did. She’s a little darker than I would have liked but no matter. This cake is all about flavour not looks 🙂
  • Meanwhile take your lemon syrup ingredients, pop them into a small saucepan and then heat together to create syrup.
  • Once you have your cake out of the oven. Leaving it in the tin. Poke holes all over it using a skewer/cocktail stick or whatever you have to hand. I did this once with a cork screw with some (not total) success.
  • Drizzle your syrup over the cake and encourage it to go into the holes. I tend to spoon it on so that I can do this.
  • Resist the temptation to take the cake out of the tin. You need to let it cool in the tin, while it soaks up the syrup.
  • Make a cup of tea. Take your cake out of it’s tin, place on a plate, cut a large slice.
  • Patience rewarded. Om nom nom

It’s really not a very pretty cake, but it is super yummy 🙂 as you can tell from the crumb covered plate at the back there!!!

Enjoy,

Lx

 

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Week 3 – Weekend Project – Duckie Lovey

Oh my, imagine my delight when I found this pattern online. The sort of springlike weather inspired me to look for a duck to make for a teeny project. Stumbled across this fab website called The Little Yellow Duck Project. Utterly delightful and charming projects all created to inspire people from around the world to make little ducks to leave for others to find. All to raise awareness for blood, bone marrow and organ donation.

The Just Duckie Lovey is adorable. I had to tweak the ripple slightly as I couldn’t get my lovey to lay flat. I went to Attic24 for her ripple stitch and used that to make the base for my lovey.

The duck pattern was a treat to follow though. Really straightforward to use. I used Style Craft Special DK in duck egg and petrol for the lovey and lemon and sunshine for the duck 🙂

This little guy makes my heart smile every time I look at him.

In other crochet related news! I have made two more squares for the square a week project. Those eagle eyed amongst you will note that I neglected to post this last week (I had made it though, so it counts)

We now have a lemon square, inspired by the arrival of April and more hopeful weather and a sunshine yellow square inspired by my ducks beak!!!

 

 

Really happy with how this project is shaping up.

Looking forward to next week. A cake addition to the project I think. Inspired by the lemonyness of this weeks yarn!!

Enjoy,

Lx

 

Extra lemony lemon drizzle, soooooo yummy in your tummy :)

January is a tricky month to get motivated generally. Last week  my middle son asked me for a lemon drizzle cake. As he is my favourite child (don’t tell the others!) his wish was my command.

The following recipe was taken from Nigella’s How to be a Domestic Goddess. She has called it the Lemon syrup loaf cake, which is posh for lemon drizzle!

As ever I have tweaked it a teeny tiny bit and have also adjusted the cooking temperature as well. This has been a long period of trial and error for me. I usually find small cakes cook great in my oven but larger cakes can be a bit hit and miss for me. I will of course give you Nigella’s recommended temperature but for my Stoves range oven, fan assist I had to reduce the temperature 20-25 degrees C. Timings remained the same.

Ingredients:

  • 125g unsalted butter
  • 175g caster sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • zest of 1 lemon ( if you want the extra lemonyness add the zest of 2)
  • 175g self raising flour
  • 4 tablespoons of milk or for my version add 2 of milk and 2 of buttermilk
  • pinch of salt

23 x 13 x 7 cm loaf tin, buttered and lined with greaseproof

For the syrup:

  • Juice of 1 and a half lemons (about 4 tablespoons) although add more or less to taste
  • 100g icing sugar

Method:

  • Preheat your oven to 180 degrees C/gas mark 4. As I said in my intro you may need to adjust according to your oven.
  • Cream together your butter and sugar. Do spend a bit of time on this. The more you blend and mix the lighter the cake mixture will be. Cream until smooth and pale.
  • Beat your eggs and add them to the butter and sugar mixture. Add the zest too. Mix well.
  • Then add in your flour and salt, folding them in with a gently touch.
  • Finally add your milk or milk and buttermilk combo.
  • Spoon the mixture into your prepared loaf tin and bake for 45 minutes.
  • While your cake is cooking gently heat the lemon juice and icing sugar for your syrup until the icing sugar has dissolved.
  • Stick a skewer in to check it if cooked. It should come out clean if properly cooked.
  • Immediately skewer your cake all over to create holes that you can then drizzle your syrup into. Pour it slowly or even spoon it on taking care to make sure that the whole cake gets a good soaking.
  • Leave the cake in it’s tin to cool. Do not try and take it out of the tin before it’s cold or risk collapse. Having said that we have done this before. We were too hungry and it smelled too good, so although it collapsed it tasted great 🙂
  • According to Nigella this serves 8-10. In my household it tends to serve a family of five with one who doesn’t like lemon cake! Share if you must, but there is pleasure to be had with a couple of your favourite offspring, a pot of tea and a slab of this cake.

Enjoy,

Lx

Lemon drizzle cake

Variety pack of yummy treats

A very sad day last week for myself and several colleagues who were made redundant. I was one of the lucky ones and managed to secure another post at the same organisation ( only 2 days a week but should give me more time to bake – YAY positive side )Image

In celebration of all my amazing colleagues ( two of whom have set up a fab new venture http://www.tdp-training.org.uk/ ) I decided to make a selection of yummy treats. Some of my cakes were prettier than others. The Lemon drizzle cupcakes look very sad really but taste so scrumptious I ate 4 before I even got to work. ( I will never be a size 12 again 😦 )

I have posted the recipe for the Millionaires Shortbread before so no need to repeat. The other cakes are both versions of a basic vanilla cupcake recipe, in fact they are based on my Mums original 4,4,4 and 2 recipe which you can find on my home page https://clarkfamilyhandbook.wordpress.com/about/.

Lemon drizzle fairy cakes.

Ingredients:

  • 1 batch of 4,4,4,2 fairy cakes. This makes either 16 small traditional fairy cakes as shown above or 9 muffin sized cupcakes.
  • 1 lemon
  • about 50g icing sugar but more or less according to how much of a sweet tooth you have.
  • a skewer or cocktail stick

While your fairy cakes are baking, put the juice of your lemon and the icing sugar into a teeny saucepan and heat until the sugar dissolves. This only takes moments.

When your cakes are cooked, pull them out of the oven and using a skewer puncture the little cakes all over so that you can then gently spoon on the lemon syrup which will then soak in. This needs to be done as soon as they come out of the oven. Leave your cakes to cool in the baking tin. I was a little impatient removing mine and the cases came away from the cases, not very pretty. They still taste yummy though.

Summer Fruits cupcakes.

Ingredients:

  • 1 batch of 4,4,4,2 fairy cakes. This makes either 16 small traditional fairy cakes as shown above or 9 muffin sized cupcakes
  • one 300ml carton of double or whipping cream
  • icing sugar to taste
  • vanilla extract or paste. ( I prefer the paste )
  • fruits of your choice – I used raspberries and blueberries.

This time you need to make sure your cakes are cooled as the cream topping won’t sit well on hot cakes.

Whip your cream and vanilla extract until it is just holding it’s shape. Careful with this as cream thickens all of a sudden. Then with a hand whisk mix in some icing sugar if you like. I like the flavour of this with the vanilla and cream plus it seems to hold it’s shape better especially if your cakes are being iced a few hours beforehand. Once you are happy with this place your mixture into a piping bag fitted with a star nozzle and then pipe your swirls onto your cakes. Pop your fruits on and then lightly dust the cakes with icing sugar. Gorgeous.

Enjoy

Lx