Simple Lemon Cake

When I was in high school, I was a serial baker.

I was the kind of student who put a lot of pressure onto herself and that required a lot of exausting mental work. So I needed to find a way to give myself a break and relax, and baking was just that.

Ensued as many as 6 types of cakes a week being baked, which was really quite a lot for a family of 5 to go through. Thankfully, my siblings’ classmates and mine were always willing to land a hand on the eating front.

Simple Lemon Cake / Easy cake recipe for everyday baking / Cake + Whisky

From that baking frenzy, I kept the unshakable feeling that cake makes many bad things better, as well as a handful of ‘best in show’ recipes, amongst which this simple lemon cake one.

Simple Lemon Cake / Easy cake recipe for everyday baking / Cake + Whisky

A simple lemon cake is a baking classic- and this recipe is perfect on all fronts.

Simple Lemon Cake / Easy cake recipe for everyday baking / Cake + Whisky

Pressed for time? It literally takes minutes to whip up and can happily be made the day before. Plus there’s no need for syrups or any fussing about.

Don’t have any fancy equipment or ingredients / not in the mood for a lot of washing up? All it takes is basic ingredients, one bowl and one baking tin.

Not very comfortable with baking projects? It’s basically impossible to ruin (you could even put all the ingredients in a blender).

Simple Lemon Cake / Easy cake recipe for everyday baking / Cake + Whisky

Scared it’ll be dry and/or boring? Do you really think I’d still be making this recipe after all those years if it wasn’t the most incredible simple lemon cake ever?

I’m talking big on zesty flavours, moist and absolutely perfect both with a cuppa for afternoon tea or a spoonful of Greek yoghurt for breakfast and brunch!

So, if life gives you lemon… make lemon cake!

Simple Lemon Cake / Easy cake recipe for everyday baking / Cake + Whisky

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Simple Lemon Cake / Easy cake recipe for everyday baking / Cake + Whisky

More easy (and delicious!) baking projects

The best carrot cake

Cranberry oatmeal cake

The best bread & butter pudding

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Simple Lemon Cake

The best bread + butter pudding

As you might have noticed, I’m all about comfort food at the moment.

Soup is still my absolute favourite (with cream of tomato, tomato & lentil & butternut versions featuring heavily in my diet this month), but I’d be lying if I pretended like what I really crave lately is carbs.

Pasta, mash, rice and all sorts of nursery puddings… basically all the beige things!

Bread & Butter Pudding â—Ź Classic pudding recipe â—Ź Cake + Whisky

Best of them all though?

This incredible, festive take on the classic bread & butter pudding.

Bread & Butter Pudding â—Ź Classic pudding recipe â—Ź Cake + Whisky

There’s something so comforting about bread & butter pudding – and this version, made with Karaway Bakery’s delicious cinnamon, walnut and raisin brioche loaf takes this classic British pudding a step further.

Bread & Butter Pudding â—Ź Classic pudding recipe â—Ź Cake + Whisky

Soft and indulgent, with crunchy nuts and moist raisins scattered through and the warm aroma of cinnamon, it’s the sort of food winter is made for.

So make the most of the cold season and pud‘ it on your menu… You can thank me later!

Bread & Butter Pudding â—Ź Classic pudding recipe â—Ź Cake + Whisky

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More comfort food recipes

Italian-style sausage casserole

Butternut squash pasta bake (V)

French apple turnovers (V)

Sticky date porridge (VE, GF)

The best bread + butter pudding

How to make shortcrust pastry

I am the laziest of cooks.

If there’s an easier way to do something, I will figure it out; if there’s a shortcut, I will find it.

How to make Shortcrust Pastry • Cooking Basics • Cake + Whisky

As long as it’s no compromise on flavours, that is.

And when it comes to tarts and quiches and that sort of thing, Jus-Rol is absolutely not the one.

How to make Shortcrust Pastry • Cooking Basics • Cake + Whisky

As this country (or at least, my teeny-tiny local supermarkets) doesn’t seem to have reach the ready-made full-butter pastry stage yet, so I’ve had to come to terms with making my own shortcrust pastry.

How to make Shortcrust Pastry • Cooking Basics • Cake + Whisky

The good news is: it’s very easy to do it yourself, takes just a few minutes, requires no weird/unusual/I’ll-have-to-run-to-the-shop-for-this ingredients and results in the most delicious, buttery and crumbly shortcrust pastry I’ve ever had.

Simply fan-tart-stic!

How to make Shortcrust Pastry • Cooking Basics • Cake + Whisky

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What to make with your homemade shortcrust pastry

Provencal Tomato Tart (V)

Spring Vegetable Tart (V)

How to make shortcrust pastry

Poppy Seed & Parmesan Cheese Biscuits

Cravings are an evil, evil thing.

Picture this. You’re sitting on the coach, minding your own business (read: trying your hardest not to watch the entire season of House of Cards in one go) when, coming from nowhere, the idea of crunchy, crumbly cheese biscuits pops up into your mind.

Poppy Seed & Parmesan Cheese Biscuits • Recipe • Cake + Whisky

You try to push it away, but there’s nothing to be done. Before you know it, you find yourself rummaging through your kitchen cupboards, hoping you have all the ingredients to make your craving dreams come true.

If you’re lucky, you’ll avoid the late-night visit to your closest Tesco Express to pick up the missing bits. Otherwise… well, you’ll just have to go, won’t you?

Poppy Seed & Parmesan Cheese Biscuits • Recipe • Cake + Whisky Poppy Seed & Parmesan Cheese Biscuits • Recipe • Cake + Whisky

Then it’s time to get measuring, mixing, and baking, peering through the oven door and wishing the time to pass quicker so you can -finally- get your hands on those long anticipated cheese biscuits.

Poppy Seed & Parmesan Cheese Biscuits • Recipe • Cake + Whisky

That’s the thing about cravings: they make you do crazy things. Like a supermarket run / baking session in the middle of the night.

But after that first crumbly cheese biscuit bite, you can’t help but think that it was all worth it.

You know what they say… Sweet dreams are made of cheese!

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More snack recipes:

Coconut curry roasted cashews

Chocolate madeleines

Poppy Seed & Parmesan Cheese Biscuits

Halloween Monster Brookies

Sure you can buy them in the stores, but there’s something special and fun about making your own Halloween treats.

Halloween Monster Brookies | Cake + Whisky

As far as I’m concerned the spookiest day of the year is as good an excuse as any to bake a batch of favourite sweet treats… And everybody knows that brownies are the way to my heart.

Halloween Monster Brookies | Cake + Whisky

Now, I’m a big fan of the traditional recipe, but trust me when I say Brookies, the genius crossing between brownies and cookies, are next level good.

Halloween Monster Brookies | Cake + Whisky

Chewy, crumbly, super chocolate-y and just a tiny bit spooky, these Monster Brookies are the ultimate Halloween-win treat, and you definitely want a batch (or three) of those in your life ASAP!

Halloween Monster Brookies | Cake + Whisky

Halloween Monster Brookies (makes 6 monster-sized cookies)

Ingredients:

  • 120g 70% dark chocolate
  • 15g butter
  • 75g caster sugar
  • 30g cornflour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 egg
  • 15g chocolate chips
  • 30g Smarties
  • a few drops dark food coloring (or, even better, a food-safe black pencil)

1. Preheat the oven to 180°C.

2. Place the chocolate and butter in a bowl and set over a pan of simmering water. Stir until melted and combined, then remove from the heat.

3. In the meantime, combine the sugar, cornflour, baking powder and egg and whisk until light and fluffy. Add the chocolate-butter mixture and mix until well combined.

4. Spoon tablespoons of mixture onto baking trays lined with baking paper, making sure you leave enough space inbetween them (they spread A LOT while baking). Dot the top of the cookies with the chocolate chips and Smarties.

5. Bake for 12-13 min in the preheated oven, then set aside to cool before drawing eyes using the black food colouring.

Halloween Monster Brookies

Salted Caramel Brownies

So, today’s the day.

The day when I’m officially closer to 30 than I am to 20.

Feeling old much? YOU BET!

Salted Caramel Brownies | Cake + Whisky

Luckily, birthdays are nature’s way of telling you to eat more cake, and god knows that’s something I’m always up for!

Salted Caramel Brownies | Cake + Whisky

Now, birthday brownies are a bit of a tradition in my house (find out why here), but this year’s needed to step it up a notch…

And what’s the best way to make any amazing dessert even better?

You know it: SALTED CARAMEL e’rythiiiiiiiiiiiing!

Salted Caramel Brownies | Cake + Whisky

So here it is. Salted caramel brownies.

Now, I used to be a triple choc’ brownies kind of girl. And then I made those and I’m telling you: TOTAL GAME CHANGER!

100-billion-calories-a-slice game changer, but after all, birthday = ultimate cheat day, right?

(and if it’s not quiiiite your birthday yet, well, you could always celebrate your un-birthday instead! ??)

Salted Caramel Brownies | Cake + Whisky

 

Salted Caramel Brownies (serves 6-8)

You’ll need: 

For the brownies: 

  • 120g soft (but NOT MELTED!) salted butter
  • 160g granulated sugar
  • 3 big eggs
  • 70g self-raising flour
  • 200g dark chocolate

For the salted caramel sauce: 

  • 150g granulated sugar
  • 40g salted butter
  • about 100ml pouring or double cream
  • a generous pinch of salt

1. Pre-heat your oven to 160°C. Butter and flour a brownie pan (I like to use a 21×21 glass roasting tray like this one)

2. Make your caramel sauce: In a medium saucepan, put the sugar and a little bit of water. Cook over a hot stove until it turns a deep-brown colour and doesn’t re-crystalised if taken off the heat for a few seconds. Add in the butter, mix well, then add the cream and mix again. Add the salt, then leave to the side to cool down.

3. Make your brownies batter: In a big mixing bowl, combine the butter and sugar, then add the eggs and the flour. Melt your chocolate over a double-boiler, then add it to the batter and mix until well combined.

4. Pour about half of your brownies batter into the buttered and floured pan, cover with a layer of salted caramel sauce, then top with the remaining brownies batter. Bake for 30-35 min.

5. Let the brownies cool down (they’re even better the following day!) before serving with the remaining salted caramel sauce drizzled on top.

Do you have any birthday traditions? I’d love to hear them in the comments!!

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Salted Caramel Brownies | Cake + Whisky

Salted Caramel Brownies

Apricot + Passion Fruit Scones

I’m a bit late to the #afternoonteaweek (totally a thing!)… but no way I was going to miss out entirely on the opportunity to use the best excuse there is to have scones and cake and call it a meal!

Scones are my favourite part of afternoon tea, and having never baked any myself, I thought it was about time I give them a go.

The word on the street is that a good scone is actually more tricky to bake as you’d think, so I wasn’t really sure how it’d end up. Add to that the fact that I’m truly terrible at following recipes and had decided that adding fresh passionfruit to your dough was the way to go and it looks like a recipe for disaster!

Add yet, my Apricot + Passion Fruit Scones worked a charm, so I thought I’d share the step-by-step recipe below.

Apricot + Passion Fruit Scones | Cake + Whisky

For 8-12 scones, you’ll need:

  • 30g granulated sugar
  • 60g cold butter, cubed
  • 60ml whole milk
  • 240g plain flour, plus more for dusting
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 package instant yeast
  • 10-12 dried apricots, chopped
  • seeds from passion fruit

Apricot + Passion Fruit Scones | Cake + Whisky

1. Pre-heat your oven to 180-200°C.

Mix together the sugar, flour and yeast. Add in the cold butter and combine until you get a sand-like texture.

Apricot + Passion Fruit Scones | Cake + WhiskyApricot and passionfruit scones 4

2. Add the eggs and mix until roughly combined.

Apricot + Passion Fruit Scones | Cake + Whisky

3. Add the milk and knead lightly until the dough comes together.

Apricot and passionfruit scones 6 Apricot and passionfruit scones 8

4. Add the diced apricots and passion fruit seeds and knead for a few seconds until just incorporated.

Apricot and passionfruit scones 9

5. Using your hands, stretch the dough on a sheet of flour-dusted baking paper.

Apricot and passionfruit scones 10

6. Using a cookie-cutter (or a glass), cut up rounds of dough until you run out. Place the scones on a baking-paper covered baking tray.

Apricot and passionfruit scones 11 Apricot and passionfruit scones 13

7. Glaze each scone with a little bit of milk (or beaten egg), then bake for 10-15 min.

Apricot and passionfruit scones 14 Apricot and passionfruit scones 16

8. Serve immediately the traditional way with clotted cream and your favourite jam.

Apricot and passionfruit scones 17

But then, salted butter and lemon curd isn’t half bad either!

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Apricot + Passion Fruit Scones