Tag Archives: lemon

The Zingy Lemon Curd Cake

Ready to Nom Lemon Curd Cake

350g self raising flour

3 level teaspoons of baking powder (this is my trick, you really want a bouncy fluffy sponge!)

350g butter, at room temperature, unsalted

350g caster sugar

6 eggs

rind of 2 lemons

juice of 1/2 – 1 lemon (depending on how zingy you like it)

Get the sponges on, this is quick and easy. Grab a hand held whisk or a food processor and through all the above into a bowl and mix together. If you want to be fancy, sieve the flour first (but for some reason self raising flour is the poofiest thing and just flies everywhere, so I avoid that where possible). You’ll end up with a lovely consistent cake batter, which you should split equally between two 20cm cake spring form tins, lined with greaseproof paper at the bottom.

Bake for 40 minutes at 175 degrees celcius (335 degrees fahrenheit). They’ll be ready when golden brown, when a skewer comes out clean and when it bounces back on light pressing. Cool for a couple minutes and turn out on to a wire rack. Allow to cool fully.

Sponges Cooling

300g caster sugar

zest of 4 lemons

juice of 4 lemons

8 eggs

200g butter, unsalted

While the cake cooks, make the lemon curd. In one bowl (one that fits nicely over a pot of water) pop the sugar and lemon zest. In another bowl beat the eggs and add the lemon juice. Mix into the first bowl with the sugar and place the unsalted butter in little bits into the bowel. Heat the pot of water, with the bowl on top. Stir at intervals, allowing the sugar to dissolve and the butter to melt. This might take up to 30 minutes, but you’ll get a lovely thick lemon curd at the end of it. I always make more than I need. It’s the best on a slice of toast in the morning!

Wait for the curd to cool a little. Go back to your now cooled cakes.

Curd Delicious

With a wonderfully sharp knife, a steady hand and a good eye – cut each cake horizontally into two, to double the layers of the cake. Place the bottom layer on a cake stand or plate and spoon a big dollop, around a cup of the curd in the middle of the bottom layer. Spread outwards, add the second layer and add curd again. Repeat with the third layer. Finally, add the top layer, ensuring that the gold brown side of the cake is on top.

Dollop that curd

Half way there with the layringFinished layering

With the juice of half a lemon and 50-100g of icing sugar (go for a consistency you like, we like a thin runny icing on the top), make your icing and pour into the middle of the top layer of the cake. Smooth outwards trying to cover everything. With the rind of 1-2 lemons decorate the top. For the occasion I used some lime zest too!

Extra Curd Saved for Breakfast

Slice and serve. Moist, tangy, sweet, nommy. (Is moist even allowed to be used anymore? Totally un-food related.)

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An Unbelievable 50th Feast

Ever wanted a birthday menu. This is what whipped together for our parents joint Birthday celebrations. All home made by the children. We were a little too busy cooking for 35 people to take photos, but the menu is better than nothing!

Champagne Aperitif

Taitinger

Starter

A hot spicy crabby ginger tart with salad garnish and a chili dressing

White Wine

 Sophie Bertin Sancerre 2011

Main

Ballyhaunis, Co. Mayo, Ireland Sirloin Beef

with Roast potatoes, Salsa Verde and a Rosemary Jus

Red Wine 

Ch. Puygueraud 2005 Bordeaux cotes de Francs  (3L bottle=Jeroboam)

Ch. Latour-Martillac 1999 Pessac-Leognan Gand cru classe de Graves (1.5L bottle=Magnum)

Torbeck 2009 Barossa Valley Grenache-Shiray-Mourverdre

Villa Novare 2009 Valpolicella Classico Superiore Ripasso

Dessert

Lemon Drizzle Cake or Chocolate and Hazelnut Torte

or Both! served with Berries and Creme Fraiche

Dessert Wine

Chateau de Rolland 1989 Barsac

Cheese

A large selection of Irish, French and Swiss cheeses served with rye crackers with linseed.

Port 

A bottle of Dow’s 1963 Port (from the year of Mom and Dad’s birth) and a bottle of Taylor’s 1977 Port (supposedly the best vintage for port of the entire 20th century)

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Watermelon and Mint Sorbet – A Blast of Fresh Zing

It’s summer time and mom decided to buy the biggest watermelon I’ve ever seen. The family made an attempt to eat through it but just couldn’t, so we had a lot of spare watermelon in the fridge – it would have been a shame to let it go to waste. So I decided to learn something new and make sorbet. Its a bit of a funny one to make, because there is just nothing worse than a really icy sorbet that doesn’t roll well in the mouth, so I was a little worried.

I made four times what I have in the recipe, because I was working with a huge amount of watermelon, but I’ve left it at the normal amounts here and feel free to just adapt based on what you have available to you.

375mL water

250g sugar

600g-800g watermelon

4 leaves of mint

100mL lemon juice

Watermelon ready to go!

First job is to de-seed the watermelon, which is a pain, but necessary.

De-seed the WatermelonChunks of Watermelon

Then blend the chunks of watermelon in a food processor.

Blend the Watermelon

Drain watermelon through sieve lined with muslin cloth

Grab a sieve and line the sieve with a muslin cloth. Filter off any missed seeds and pulp left over from the fruit. You end up with a deep red juice. Nom.

Get sugar, lemon juice and water and heat until sugar is dissolved. I added a couple of mint leaves tied in a muslin bag to give some extra flavour. When sugar is dissolved, remove bag of mint and leave to cool.

Syrup of Lemon Juice, Sugar and Water

Mint Leaves wrapped in a muslin cloth bag

Once syrup is cooled, mix in the watermelon juice.

Chilled, Mixed and ready to be frozen!

Place in an ice cream machine and use according to standard guidelines for your machine. We have one of the basic Gaggia ones.

Pop in Ice Cream Machine until smooth and frozen

Store in air tight tupperware container and serve however you see fit!

Voila! Finished watermelon sorbet!

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Crunchy Hazelnut Meringue Christmas Cookies

These are possibly the easiest cookies I have ever made. Plus they go down a treat. I made them only because I had a surplus of ground hazelnut that was going to go out of date at the end of the year and I whipped these together from an awesome Swiss Christmas cookie book!

You will need:

350g ground hazelnut

4 egg whites

250g of caster sugar

some lemon zest

Egg Whites

Beat the egg white, until the peaks are stiff and the egg white remains in the bowl when turned upside down. Slowly add the sugar, until a meringue-ish texture appears. Then fold in the hazelnut and the lemon zest.

Amy 027

Using two teaspoons make small heaps on to lined baking trays, 5cm apart and leave to rest for 2 hours.

Amy 030

Bake at  180 Degrees Celsius for 20 minutes. Place on a rack to cool and serve with a coffee for some Chewy Nom time.

Amy 031

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Easy Tangy Lemon, Rocket and Prawn Pasta

Monday night, the week has just started and you want something with a really nice kick to it – but it has to be easy to prepare. This is the business.

Grab whatever pasta you want to cook and get the water boiling. Whip out a pan and get some chilis and garlic chopped finely in it with a little oil. Have it at a nice medium heat so they brown quickly, but don’t burn them – there’s nothing worse than burnt garlic.

While the garlic/chili is browning make sure the pasta is on, and grab a bag of prawns from the freezer, (or have them previously defrosted -or fresh if you’re that cool). Pop them in some warm water, not boiling, until they are no longer frozen. Drain them and add them to the pan.

Add some chopped sundried tomatoes or sundried tomatoe paste – if you have it handy – or squeeze in some tomatoe puree. Pop one to two glasses of white wine on top of the cooked prawns and stir in the puree until the prawns are cooking nicely in a light sauce. Pour yourself a glass while your at it and stir occasionally.

Drain the cooked pasta and pop it back into the pot it came from. Pour all the delicious prawn-tomato-wine sauce over it, add a handful of torn rocket and the juice of a lemon and stir all of it together. Season with salt and pepper (mainly pepper, I find I don’t really cook with salt all that much anymore).

Plate it, making sure to give everyone prawns – they always hide at the bottom and if you dont get any there is trouble in our house! Add another few rocket leaves and some lemon zest to top off the dish.

Easy fix and now you can relax and finish off the bottle of white you opened earlier!

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