Lemon Drizzle Cake
One of the great classics. Soft sponge, tangy lemon, sugary glaze. No squidgy icing to melt all over the place, the perfect cake for picnics, lunchboxes and of course, for cutting up in satisfying chunks for my Seniors Lunch Group.
The topic this week, having had a two-week break, was holidays. Specifically, memories of holidays. We had a great range: family holidays in camps all over Britain, hotels in Wales, wet weekends in Blackpool, driving marathons in France, medical emergencies in Portugal and one member told us about turning up at a hotel where their luggage had been delivered the day before, to find that the staff had absconded due to non-payment of wages and left notes telling guests where to find and prepare their own food! Memories of guest houses where hot water was strictly timed or where you had to bring your own sugar and tea; in the early 1950s when rationing was still around you couldn’t expect your host(ess) to provide such things.
The lemon drizzle cake was much appreciated. This recipe is another one from Pam Corbin’s River Cottage Handbook No 8, Cakes. It’s infallible in my experience and I turned to it when I needed an easy cake, having returned from holiday a day before the Lunch Club and not a lot in the fridge.
Makes 12 generous chunks Timing: 1 hour
Pre heat the oven to 180°C. Grease and line a 20cm square cake tin with baking parchment.
Zest the lemons and then squeeze them.
Put the flour, baking powder, butter, caster sugar, eggs and lemon zest into a bowl and mix until you get a soft batter – about 5 minutes.
Spoon the batter into your baking tin and bake for 35-40 minutes until the cake is cooked, golden on top and a skewer comes out clean. Remove from the oven, leave to cool for 10 minutes in the tin, then remove from the tin and the paper and put the cake on a wire rack. It’s quite a well behaved moist sponge and doesn’t seem to want to crack or fall apart as you do this. Prick the sponge all over the top surface with a skewer, not poking the hole right to the bottom of the cake.
Mix the granulated sugar with the lemon juice (sieve to remove pips if there are any) without stirring too much; you don’t want the sugar to dissolve. Spoon this mixture evenly over the cake, letting it dribble down into the sponge leaving the granulated glaze on the top. Let the cake cool completely and put it in an airtight tin to keep.
A Hug from the Kitchen
Healthy, hearty, happy food, for good times and bad. Cheer yourself up, or spread the cheer around your family and friends.