If like me, you fancy yourself as a junior Mary Berry when it comes to baking, you’ll no doubt find yourself baking whenever you’ve got some spare time. I love baking sporadically, yet when I’ve got friends coming over and want to treat them to a bake – I panic! Recommendations are the only way forward! So I turned to a trusted source and dug out this beautiful, very simple recipe for a Lemon Drizzle Cake. When there’s pressure; you can’t experiment! You need to get it right first time!
You will need:
- 225g unsalted butter, softened
- 225g caster sugar
- 4 eggs ( I used free range medium)
- finely grated zest 1 lemon (I only grated round 1/2 a lemon and this was plenty)
- 225g self-raising flour
For the drizzle/ topping:
- juice 1½ lemons (I only used juice from 1 lemon and this proved plenty too)
- 85g caster sugar
- Heat oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4. Beat together 225g softened unsalted butter and 225g caster sugar until pale and creamy, then add 4 eggs, one at a time, slowly mixing through. Sift in 225g flour, then add the finely grated zest of 1 lemon and mix until well combined. Line a loaf tin (8 x 21cm) with greaseproof paper, then spoon in the mixture and level the top with a spoon.
- Bake for 45-50 mins until a thin skewer inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean. You may need to keep it in for a few minutes longer – always make sure you keep an eye on it so you don’t over bake! While the cake is cooling in its tin, mix together the juice of 1 1/2 lemons and 85g caster sugar to make the drizzle. Prick the warm cake all over with a skewer or fork, then pour over the drizzle – the juice will sink in and the sugar will form a lovely, crisp topping. Leave in the tin until completely cool, then remove and serve. Will keep in an airtight container for 3-4 days, or freeze for up to 1 month.
Perfect to serve with afternoon tea or an after dinner treat. The fresh lemons really contrast the sweetness of the cake making this a true treat for the palate. Enjoy!
(Original recipe adapted from Good Food Magazine – 2007)