Lemon cake


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Just the kind of laid back cake that packs a punch while dressed most plainly in a sponge batter.

The tartness of lemons balances ever so perfectly with the sweetness of cake that it’s difficult to understand whether its complementing your palette or squeezing in your cheeks.

Even better, it tastes more delicious the next day, if it survives, that is.

The summeriness of lemons does wonders to uplift your spirits and this cake works perfectly as a midday sweet snack filler or lazy dessert. It’s not easy to say ‘no’ to this bronze slab of sour sweet zing, and if you can resist it then you ARE heartless.

 

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there are two stages to this cake. one is the batter and the other is syrup and both idiotically easy.

 

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begin by creaming butter and sugar

 

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once they’re satisfactorily creamed, add vanilla extract

 

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and lemon zest

 

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and eggs

 

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also mix the leavening agents into the flour for an even mix.

 

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add flour to the mix

 

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mix well.

 

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it’ll be a thick thick batter, and a bit of milk will soften its consistency without thinning it.

 

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nice dropping consistency

 

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line a baking tin of choice with baking paper. Scrape the batter in and bake in a preheated oven at 180°C for 40-45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in comes out clean

 

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while the cake bakes we can get on with the syrup. It’s a simple syrup. With sugar and lemon juice.

 

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add sugar to a pot

 

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and the lemon juice

 

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and let it cook until the sugar begins to melt

 

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here the contents began boiling which meant the sugar was pretty much dissolved.Convey the pot to a cooler place and let it slowly cool. DO NOT be tempted to taste the boiling potion. You’ll come to regret it so.

 

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once the cake is baked and out of the oven, do not wait for it to cool down.

 

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start poking deep holes in it. Use a skewer or a toothpick.

 

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Drizzle lemon syrup all over, so that the top is sodden. Be brave. The cake won’t crumble under all that liquid. In fact it will absorb all the contents.

 

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The surface will be slick with the syrup. Let the cake continue cooling in its tin. If you try to pry it out at this stage it will tend to crumble and break apart.

 

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you might wonder why there’s a difference in picture of the said cake. I’d baked two cakes. The one baked in loaf tin was given away promptly and the one shown above was consumed by this blogger.

 

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Ingredients

For the cake

Butter: 120 g (3/4 cup)

Sugar: 170 g (1.5 cups)

Flour: 170g (1.5 cups)

Eggs: 2

Zest of 1 lemon

Milk: 4 tbsp

Baking powder: 1 tsp

Baking soda: 1/4 tsp

Vanilla extract: 1 tsp

For the lemon syrup

Juice of 2 lemons

80g (3/4 cup) sugar


Recipe instructions: cream together butter and sugar, and add lemon zest, vanilla extract and eggs. Beat them well. Add flour and leavening agents and fold all ingredients to form a batter. Add milk to thin the batter in spoonable consistency and bake in a well greased and paper lined baking tin at 180° for 40-45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.

While the cake bakes prepare the syrup. Heat gently the sugar and lemon juice until all sugar has dissolved.

Once the cake is baked and out of the oven, prick holes or puncture the top with a toothpick or cake testing skewer to form holes. Pour over the syrup and let the cake rest to absorb the syrup in its pan. Don’t take out the cake until it’s completely cooled.

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Cut into pieces and serve.

 

 

 

Salmon fried rice


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This is just the kind of food you want to indulge in from keeping your waistline into an ever expanding universe. Healthy, nourishing, nutritious and all too tasty..how often do you even read all these adjectives in the same sentence?

Well my darlings, if you’re still on about healthy eating this year (why?), then this fantastic recipe is the one for you. Packed full on with flavours, yet strangely subtle. This bowl promises to comfort without making you fat. It’s sustenance and all too easy to scarf down in heaping abundance. No guilt, only pleasure. Your taste buds will thank you and your insides will give a content round of applause. It’s so easy and quick to put together that you’ll see yourself tottering in smug satisfaction as you lay this humble yet celestially righteous bowl of gratifying health for all to see and eat.

This does a superb double take as not only a solitary lunch but also as a quick meal for many.

 

DSC_0224 copyA bit many ingredients, but they’re not a whole lot.paprika, black peppercorns, cumin seeds, salt, lemon zest and lemon juice, chopped onions, ginger and garlic as the flavour base. Salmon, peas and spinach, hard boiled eggs and that’s really it. (psst. use any fish you have available)

 

DSC_0227dry roast the cumin and peppercorns, until they’re just fragrant

 

DSC_0230These need to be crushed along with other spices

 

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DSC_0232In with the salt and paprika

 

DSC_0233and you crush it within an inch of their existence, or until they’re nicely crushed

 

DSC_0235like so..

 

DSC_0236now for a gentle massage or rub..however you prefer

 

DSC_0238an now for a bit of tasteful dismemberment..or you can just cut in to chunks

 

DSC_0239In a pot of choice, heat some oil and add in the chopped onions

 

DSC_0241casually throw in the chopped ginger

 

DSC_0244followed closely by lemon zest

 

DSC_0245and in with the fish chunks. Cook for a few minutes, until the fish is more or less cooked.

 

DSC_0247Add in the chopped garlic and stir for a minute more.

 

DSC_0248Plonk in all the vegetables (peas and spinach) and stir for just another minute until the spinach wilts. (I’m using frozen peas, so it takes just a minute for them to cook. If you’re using fresh peas, you might want to add them a bit earlier or pre cook them)

 

DSC_0251now for the rice. I used a rice cooker and steamed the rice with a clove and black cardamom pod (totally optional)

 

DSC_0252In they go

 

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mix it well and add in the lemon juice. taste for seasoning, you might want to add in a touch more salt.

 

DSC_0269Embellish with eggs if you please. This recipe has real oomph and wow factor. It looks simple, and it is simple, but the flavours manage to hit all the right spots without jarring your senses.

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Ingredients

Salmon fillet: 170g

Onion: 1 medium sized. finely chopped

Ginger: 1 inch stem finely chopped

Garlic-2-3 cloves finely chopped

Paprika: 1/2 tsp

Cumin seeds: 1 tsp

Black peppercorns: 1 tsp

lemon:1 (zest+juice)

salt: 1 tsp + more

Cooked rice: 150g-200g (about 1 cup)

Peas: 100g (1/2 cup)

Eggs (optional) : 1-2 (hardboiled or to your preferred doneness)

Spinach: big bunch (it wilts down to almost nothing when cooked. Use a lot if you really want to see it in your dish)

Salmon fillet or fish chunks: 150g

Oil to cook: 1 tbsp

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Recipe instructions: Dry roast the cumin seeds and black peppercorns for a minute or so and crush along with paprika and salt. Rub the salmon fillet on both sides with this dry mixture and cut into chunks.

In a large pot, heat some oil and add in the chopped onions and ginger. Cook for a few seconds until translucent and add in the lemon zest and stir fry for half a minute. Add in the fish and cook for a couple minutes until fish is almost done. Add in the garlic and stir together for a minute or so.

Add in the peas and spinach and cook for another minute, until the spinach is wilted and fish is completely cooked.

Add in the cooked rice and stir it all together, until all rice is well incorporated throughout the mixture and each grain is coated with flavour.

check for seasoning, add more salt if you prefer.

Finally squeeze in the lemon and briefly stir.

Serve hot, flecked with chunks of hard boiled eggs.

Enjoy!!