This is one of my all time favourite cakes to make. I’m sorry to give you something to make this week but you know, Sundays are good days for baking in my book and if you can’t indulge at the weekend then when can you?
The thing I love about this cake is the delicately sweet lemon fragrance and the light sponge, I also think there is something nostalgic and very British about this cake. Perfect for warmer days. The method is simple, as in just put all ingredients in the mixer and blitz for a minute or so. Pour the batter into a greased and lined loaf tin, bake for 30 to 40 minutes and enjoy with a good cuppa or a drop of Prosecco and why the hell not?
Ingredients for the cake:
450g loaf tin
125g of soft butter or margarine
150g caster sugar
3 medium eggs
1tsp baking powder
pich of salt
zest of 2 lemons
4 tbsp poppy seeds
Ingredients for the icing:
50g icing sugar
1 tbsp lemon juice
Like I said, add all the ingredients to your free-standing mixer or a bowl if you are using a hand-held mixer until you have a homogenous cake batter.
Listen, my tip for baking a sponge well, let’s call it my dirty secret, is to use margarine instead of butter. Yes, I know what you are thinking but trust me and test it if you don’t believe me but margarine makes sponges light as a feather whereas butter gives you a much denser texture! My Grandmother taught me this trick and Mary Berry swears by it and anyway, margarine isn’t anywhere near as awful as it used to be so go with it, okay?
Once you have a good looking cake batter that isn’t too runny or too thick, no lumps please, you can grate in the lemon zest and add the poppy seeds. Give it a gentle stir, pour into your greased tin and put into a preheated oven at 180C or 160 FAN for 30 to 40 minutes.
While the cake cooks you can make this icing by adding the lemon juice to the icing sugar, stir until you have a smooth slightly runny paste and pour over the cake once it has cooled completely. Slice and enjoy, this cake won’t last long!