I was asked recently to step back to age six. I was to think of my favourite cake, and make it for the BBC Good Food ME team – they wanted to know what an Australian food blogger thought they should take from my food-clogged mind, and put in their 6th birthday issue. But I spent my sixth birthday in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea. And the favourite sweet of this expat child was mangoes – not in cake, but fresh of the tree in the back yard. Peeled and dishevelled, sliding through my hands, juice dribbling to my elbows as I sucked the pip dry.
But then I would come back to Melbourne and see grandparents and aunties. And my Aunty Nance would make me lemon slice. And that was the one sweet treat I could not get enough of.
So I’ve made it into a cake. It’s a simple one, but has the same extremes of sweet and sour. But it’s soft enough to stick some candles in. You’ll see this cake and five others in this month’s magazine. My food blogging friends My Custard Pie, Pear Tree Diaries, Sips and Spoonfuls, Pastry School Diaries and A Food Affair have also contributed.
- 250g unsalted butter (softened)
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 1/2 cups self raising flour (375g)
- 6 eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 2 lemons, zested and juiced
- pinch of salt
- 250ml whipping cream
- 2 tbsp lemon curd (yes, the store-bought one)
- 1 cup icing sugar
- boiling water
- Preheat oven to 160ºC and line two pans with baking parchment.
- Whip up the butter and sugar, then add eggs and vanilla, whipping until dense and creamy.
- Add half the cream, zest of both lemons and dry ingredients, mixing on slow until well combined.
- Pouring half the mixture into each pans and bake for 35 minutes or until a spike tests clean. Set aside to cool.
- Whip up remaining cream until stiff, then fold in lemon curd. Spread over one cake then place the other on top
- mix the juice of one lemon with the icing sugar, adding more lemon juice or boiling water to taste, until you have a pouring frosting.
- Pour over the cake in lines, then dust with icing sugar.
- This cake is better when chilled as the central cream takes on a firmer texture.
- I like to add pinch of salt to the icing
- You can see my page on facebook here – if you want the others, you’re going to have to buy the mag!