Yesterday was the BEST day! I went around to my cousin's house to visit his wife Sharon and daughter Poppy for a good chin-wag and a cuddle respectively. Sharon made some lovely sandwiches and we had several cups of tea (poppy had her bottle) and I brought along this lemon poppyseed cake. I had such a lovely time chatting and got some brilliant tickles and giggles in with Miss Poppy.
I took a slice over to my Dad and Stepmum's later on, which earned me an invitation out for a lovely dinner with them and some of their friends at their local Italian bistro Cafe Capriccio.
Read what you want into that, but yesterday I learned that if you take this cake to relatives' houses, you get yummy lunch, tea, filet mignon and plenty of red wine.
Aside from the baking and cooling time, this is super quick to make and is based loosely on the basic pound cake recipe.
Lemon Poppyseed cake with Very Lemony Butter Cream Icing
Serves 12, 30 minutes prep, 2 hours baking+cooling
300g Self Raising Flour (or plain flour with 1 1/2 tsp baking powder)
200g butter at room temp
75g sunflower or canola (rapeseed) oil
300g golden caster sugar
5 large eggs at room temp
1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
Juice of one lemon
finely grated zest of one lemon
1/2 tsp fine sea salt
4 tbsp blue poppy seeds
For the icing:
500g icing sugar
250g butter- cool but not cold
zest and juice of 1 1/2 lemons
Silver or gold dragees to decorate
Pre-heat the oven to 180C (350F) and prepare two 20cm x 4cm deep cake tins by lightly greasing with butter and lining the bottoms with a circle of baking paper.
Use a stand mixer or an electric hand mixer to beat together the sugar, oil and butter until very pale and creamy.
Add the eggs, one at a time to this mixture, beating each one well in before adding the next. Grate in the lemon zest, and beat while drizzling in the lemon juice slowly until all well-combined.
Stir in the the sea salt and the poppy seeds, then sift in the flour and bicarbonate of soda. Stir through well enough to combine the flour completely, but do not over mix, as you'll effect how well the cake will rise in the oven.
Bake in the oven on the same shelf (if you can fit them on the same shelf) for 40-minutes, or until the internal temp reaches 98 degrees C (210F) or a skewer inserted into the centre comes out completely clean.
Cool in the tins for 15 minutes, Then turn onto a wire rack to finish cooking completely before icing.
For the icing, just beat all the ingredients together with your electric mixer for a couple of minutes until very smooth, pale and creamy. It's best to use butter which is cool but not hard-cold. You should have a nice, smooth, spreadable icing now, but if you think it's too stiff, beat in another 1/2 the juice of a lemon.
If you need to and if the top is very rounded, use a serrated knife to flatten or even out the top of the cake you want to be the bottom half. You can do the same for the top cake if you want it to be perfectly flat.
Use a palette knife or spatula to spread a little of the icing on top of one of the cakes, then gently set the second one on top.
Pile the rest of the icing onto the top of the cake and push it out from the centre and down the sides, moving in a circular motion and smoothing as you go.
Top the cake with the silver dragees or a sprinkle of poppy seeds.
Now take to a lovely relative's house, have a lovely chat and cuddle.