Before Christmas, my friends and I met up for our annual girl’s Christmas meal. We always do a Secret Santa, and this year I received some awesome presents: a two tier cake stand and Mary Berry’s Baking Bible cookbook. Mary Berry, you may or may not be aware, is my absolute heroine. I LOVE her, and anything Berry related. I’m slightly obsessed (although I hope in a nice-admiration-I-wish-you-were-my-nan kind of way, as opposed to slightly-scary-stalker way).
Seriously, I love this book. I’ve already spent hours reding through it and deciding what to bake and in what order. I’m considering a “Julie & Julia” style project working my way through the entire book – what do you think, shall I do it? My workmates could benefit from this greatly, but my waistline I fear may not…
So, I had a compulsion to bake. Do you ever get that? When you just have to bake SOMETHING? Anything? Most of the time it’s not even that I want to eat it, it’s the process. Baking for me is my relaxation and my therapy.
I searched through the book – I wanted to make something classic but tasty and what better than a Lemon Drizzle Cake? Mary Berry makes this as a tray bake, so I decided to do the same.
I’m not just saying this, but this cake was great. Light, lemony and sweet. The syrup for the topping was crunchy and thick, just how I like it.
This is me, baking Mary’s recipe, in my own words. But it’s definitely her recipe, I couldn’t take credit for such perfection! I thought I’d taken pictures of making this but I obviously forgot – Oops, sorry!
For the cake:
225g unsalted butter or Stork, softened
225g caster sugar
275g self raising flour
2 level tsp baking powder
4 large eggs
4 tbsp milk
Zest of 2 lemons
For the crunchy topping:
175g caster sugar
Juice of 2 lemons
— Preheat the oven to 160 degrees Celsius. Line a 30x23cm tin with baking paper.
— Put all the cake ingredients into a bowl and mix until fully combined. I used my KitchenAid on a medium setting. Spoon the mixture into the prepared tin and level, then bake for around 35 minutes. The cake should be golden brown and springy to touch.
— Allow the cake to cool slightly in the tin. Mix the remaining sugar and lemon juice until it’s runny. Turn the cake out onto a wire rack, and place a plate underneath to catch any drips.
— Using a skewer or toothpick, poke holes all over the top of the cake to allow the drizzle to penetrate right through. Then spoon the drizzle mixture over the cake and leave to cool completely.
Once cooled, cut into slices and enjoy 🙂 This cake is wonderfully light and moist, and will keep well in an airtight container for at least 3 days, although it didn’t last that long in our house!
If you’re interested in the book, you can buy it here. I’d highly recommend it for both baking newbies and the more experienced cook – there is something for everyone in there.