Traditional English Lemon Drizzle Cake Recipe
Hi from a very sunny England! Since we are being blessed with great weather, I needed something to serve that is light and tasty for teatime in the garden with friends and family. My mind instantly went to an old family favourite, Lemon Drizzle Cake.
This is an incredibly easy recipe. I don't think recipes have to be difficult to be dazzling, and this cake is simplicity itself. The golden rules is that as long as you remember to use good quality ingredients, your cake will taste all the better for it. This is also the ultimate in quality fast food, as the preparation time is only 5-10 minutes. This means that if a friend calls to say they're popping over then this cake can be in the oven before they're even in their car. Cooking will only take 35-40 minutes in the oven, so with very little effort you'll have an amazing result and a very happy friend.
You will need a 2-pound loaf tin for this amount of cake batter—but the ingredients are easily halved if you want to make a smaller batch. If you'd like to make individual treats, you can always bake the mixture in cupcake form. I use large muffin cases, and since it rises it gives you a flat top when it's baked, which is ideal for icing.
By the way, did you know that you can freeze cake? I slice all my cakes, wrap them in clingfilm and pop them in a large freezer bag. When I'm making packed lunches I just put a slice into the lunchbox straight from the freezer. By the time it's lunchtime, it's perfectly defrosted and tastes just as fresh as when you made it. Unfortunately, this tip takes away your excuse to eat up the entire cake now before it goes hard—sorry.
This is the perfect cake for a traditional English teatime treat, or for when guests pop round. Treat yourself and your guests to this moist, lemony masterpiece.
- 4 oz soft butter
- 6 oz self-raising flour
- 6 oz caster sugar
- 2 large free-range eggs
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 6 tablespoons milk
- 1 large, fat, juicy, unwaxed organic lemon
- Plus an additional 4 oz caster sugar
1. Pre-heat your oven to 180 degrees Celsius/160 degrees if it's on the Fan setting or Gas Mark 4.
2. Line your loaf tin with a cake liner. If you don't have one grease the loaf tin and cut a strip of baking parchment which will run along the bottom and up both sides, it will look like this \___/, and this will help you remove the cake easily.
3. Put the top set of ingredients into your food processor (not the lemon and not the 4oz of caster sugar) and blitz until you have a smooth consistency - yes it really is that easy.
4. Add the zest of half your lemon - and pulse a couple of times just to make sure that it mixes into the cake batter but not enough to chop it all up, you want to be able to see those lovely little bits of lemon zest.
5. Pour the batter into your prepared loaf tin - this is the point where the wonderful smell first catches your attention and it's really hard not to eat the uncooked batter - bliss! Just remember we need some for the cake.
6. Bake in the centre of your oven for 35-40 minutes, remove when a toothpick will come out of the cake cleanly.
7. Place the tin on a wire rack to cool for 10-15 minutes.
8. While this is cooling zest the rest of your lemon and place in a bowl, now roll the lemon backwards and forwards with the flat of your hand and this will mean the juice will come out easier, add the juice from your lemon to the zest and add the 4ozs of caster sugar, stir gently and it will form a lemon water icing.
9. Using a skewer make holes in the top of your cake and start to pour the icing over the cake, the icing will eventually settle on top of the cake but it will also seep into the cake making it deliriously moist and lemony. I also pull the cake slightly away from the sides with a butter knife and pour some icing in there as well.
10. Leave the cake to cool for an hour (this is the hard bit) this gives time for the sponge to soak up all the icing and for the icing on the top to harden.
I just love cutting through that crisp lemon topping, and that first bite and lemony hit is unbelievably good. I always opt for the end pieces—more crunch for your bite.
I hope you'll all give this recipe a try. It is so easy, and I'd love to hear what you all think of my recipe.