Although I love all my recipes similarly, this lemon drizzle cake has a unique area in my coronary heart – feedback shows it’s long gone down a storm with every body from a mums and infants organization in Hackney to a grasp patissière in Paris – mainly, I suspect, due to the fact the ratio of effort to effects is skewed so closely within the prepare dinner’s favour. Fluffy, but deliciously sticky, it’s a right crowdpleaser.

Prep 20 min
Cook 50-55 min
Makes one loaf cake

175g butter softened, plus a touch greater to grease
Two unwaxed lemons
175g caster sugar
Fine salt
Three eggs
100g self-raising flour
75g ground almonds
A little milk
100g demerara sugar
1 Prepare the tin

Grease a 2lb loaf tin (ie, one measuring approximately 23cm x 13cm x 7cm) with butter or oil, and line with greaseproof paper. Heat the oven to 180C (160C fan)/350F/fuel 4.

Zest the lemons – in case you haven’t got unwaxed (or organic) ones, provide them a terrific scrub with warm water to cast off some of the wax first, because this may provide a higher flavour.

2 Soften the butter

If you’ve forgotten to take the butter out of the fridge, reduce it into cubes and go away it close to the nice and cosy oven or provide it with some desirable whacks with a rolling pin to help it on its manner. (Microwaving will simply melt the outside, which isn’t best.) Put the cubed butter in a large bowl, or inside the bowl of a meals mixer, with the caster sugar, a pinch of best salt and half of the lemon zest.
Three Cream the butter and sugar

Use electric beaters to conquer the butter and sugar mix till it’s genuinely light and fluffy, scraping down the edges of the bowl as essential; this needs to take approximately five minutes. You can do that with a wood spoon, but it’s going to take a while because you need to get as a lot of air into the mixture as possible.

Four Add the eggs

Beat together the eggs in a jug, then beat them into the butter and sugar aggregate a bit at a time, making sure each addition is very well incorporated before adding any more. If the mixture threatens to curdle at any factor, add a bit of the flour to carry it back to a smooth consistency.
Five Incorporate the flour…

Tip the flour right into a sieve and sift it on top of the butter and sugar mixture – even though this is not important, it will help to provide a lighter, fluffier result, so I’d endorse it. Use a big metallic spoon lightly to fold within the flour with a sluggish, discern-of-8 movement, being careful to knock as little air out of the combination as possible.

6 … and the floor almonds and milk

Put the floor almonds in a bowl, supply them a short whisk to interrupt up any lumps, then fold into the batter in the same way because of the flour. Gradually blend in only enough milk to skinny down the batter to a consistency a good way to reluctantly drop off a spoon.
7 Pour into the tin and bake

Pour the batter into the organized tin and lightly degree the pinnacle. Put inside the warm oven and bake for about 50-55 mins, or until the pinnacle is golden and risen, and a skewer driven into the centre comes out clean, or as a minimum with none wet batter clinging to it; some crumbs are best.
Eight Now for the drizzle

Juice both lemons and mix this with the demerara sugar and the closing lemon zest. Leave the cake within the tin, and poke small holes evenly everywhere in the top, then pour over the drizzle bit by bit, anticipating it be absorbed earlier than adding any more. Leave the cake to cool in its tin before turning out.

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