Tuesday, 20 June 2006

Lemon Drizzle Cake

Lemon Drizzle Cake
My youngest had their cake-sale day a few weeks ago. Of course she 'demanded' that I bake at least one. I thought this traditional English cake would suit since it's universally liked plus fits the school requirement of 'no nuts' in the cake. The kids and parents in the cake-sale gave their approval by snapping up these squares within a few minutes of being laid on the table. The week after, my daughter was one of the few kids called to come forward by the headmaster in front of the whole school assembly. She was commended for bringing in (in his words) "the delicious lemon drizzle cake and marbled brownies" and was given a round of applause. Ahhhhh ...

As you can see the sugar in the drizzle did not get dissolved well in the lemon juice so I updated the recipe to include a step of heating the juice with the sugar to avoid that sugary crust on top. Actually others like it better that way but for me I'd rather have it right in, drenching the cake making it a bit soggy and moist but oh so yummy with its sweet-sour tang.

This is an easy one-bowl recipe. So easy in fact that even my 13-year-old daughter can make it unaided. The lining and buttering of the pan was the only thing she didn't like. I adapted this from mine (and Sha's) current fav baking book - the BBC GoodFood magazine's 101 Cakes & Bakes.

Lemon Drizzle Cake

100 g  butter - softened
175 g  [1 1/4 cups] self-raising flour
1 tsp baking powder
175 g  [1/2 cup + 1/3 cup] caster sugar (superfine)
2 large eggs
6 Tbsp milk
finely grated rind of 1 lemon

5 Tbsp lemon juice
50 g  [6 Tbsp] icing sugar (confectioner's)
2 Tbsp caster sugar (superfine)
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F/fan 160°C/180°C/gas mark 4. Butter and line the base of a 11 x 7 inches cake pan.
  2. Put all ingredients in a bowl. Mix and beat for about 3 minutes.
  3. Pour into the prepared pan and bake for 25-30 minutes or until a skewer poked in the middle comes out clean.
  4. While it's baking, mix the icing - gently heat the lemon juice with the sugars in a small saucepan until the sugars are dissolved.
  5. Once the cake is out of the oven, poke or pierce it all over the top with a long skewer or toothpick. Make sure you pierce all the way through the bottom of the pan.
  6. Pour the icing evenly on top of the cake (now with lots of holes) while still hot. Let cool, slice and serve.

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