This weekend, I went down to Devon with my parents to visit family. One of my relatives is turning 80 this week, and I wanted to make her a birthday cake.
I wanted to make something fairly traditional, but tasty, and it needed to withstand a couple of hours in the car on the way down.
I decided to practice this cake once in the week, to make sure it would be just right, and it disappeared in record time. The photo is actually of a slice of the test cake – in my haste to get ready and out the door on Saturday morning, I completely forgot to take a photo of the finished cake. I can assure you it was very well received though. The sponge is very moist and the limoncello syrup and lemon curd give it a lovely zesty flavour. The curd filling almost melted into the sponge – it doesn’t even look as though it is filled, but the flavour is definitely there.
Lemon limoncello cake
For the cake
200g butter, softened
200g caster sugar
Finely grated zest of two lemons
4 large free-range eggs, lightly beaten
200g self raising flour
For the limoncello syrup
50g caster sugar
6 tbsp lemon curd (I used homemade)
- Preheat the oven to 170C
- Grease and line two 8” round cake tins with non-stick baking paper
- Place the butter, sugar and lemon zest into a large mixing bowl. Beat together vigorously until pale and fluffy. This will take a few minutes. Use a stand mixer if you have one.
- Add the eggs, a little at a time and beat well after each addition.
- Sift the flour into the cake mixture and gently fold in until just combined
- Spoon the cake mixture evenly between the two tins. Spread evenly around the tins, right up to the edges and smooth the top using a spatula
- Bake the cakes in the preheated oven for 20-25 minutes until well-risen and lightly browned.
- While the cakes are baking, make the limoncello syrup. Simply place the water, sugar and limoncello into a small saucepan and heat over a moderate heat until the sugar is dissolved. Remove from the heat and set aside.
- When the cakes are cooked, remove them from the oven and allow them to cool in the tins for 15 minutes. Take the cakes from the tins and transfer to a wire rack to cool fully. Peel away any baking paper.
- Using a pastry brush, carefully brush the limoncello syrup over both sponges, and allow to cool fully.
- Once the sponges are cool, fill them with lemon curd and sandwich together. You can always spread a little more on top of the cake, too.
- Serve immediately!