Sunday, 29 June 2014

Lemon and Cardamom Drizzle Cake

During the spring and summer months, i tend to lean towards bakes that contain citrus fruits, or fresh fruits, as they tend to be less heavy, and are fresh and light, perfect for afternoon garden tea party. This lemon and cardamon cake is delicious, and a nice change to normal lemon drizzle cake, with the addition of cardamon, a spice that i rarely use, its fast becoming one of my favourite cakes.

The cardamon works perfectly with lemon in this, and i always ask myself why i don't use it more! Then i remember how tiresome it is to get all of the seeds out, then grind them(luckily this time i found a really quick way).The seeds though give a beautiful black flecked sponge, and obviously coat your fingers in an unbelievable cardamon smell which later is accompanied with lemon... et volia you have the cake smell on your fingers making your mouth water before the cake is even ready, oops!
As per usual, i didn't have any granulated sugar to create a crunchy top, but since i had zested the lemon in big strips, i think the lemon looked pretty and wouldn't be as pretty with it mixed in with the granulated sugar. So maybe just this once i was glad that i didn't have granulated, but feel free to use granulated if you like a crunchy top.

1 1/2  tbsp green cardamom pods
175g self-raising flour
1 tsp baking powder
175g butter
175g light brown sugar
finely grated zest of 4 lemons and juice of 2
3 medium, lightly beaten
50g granulated sugar

1. preheat the oven to 180°/gas mark 4
2. grease and line loaf tin
3. slit the cardamon pods open with a sharp knife and shake or poke out the dark seeds(this tends to take quite a while, but is totally worth it in the end)
4. crush the seeds in a pestle and mortar, or chop them with a knife, until a coarse powder is formed
5. put the butter and light brown sugar into a bowl with the crushed cardamon seeds and half of the lemon zest, and cream together, until light and fluffy.
6. beat in the eggs, a splash or two at a time, until everything is fully incorporated
7. fold, in the sifted flour and baking powder, until smooth
8. quickly beat in half the lemon juice
9. tip into the lined loaf tin and smooth the top, then pop into the oven and bake for 40 mins until set and golden brown.x

10. while the cake is still hot, spike the top with a fork. Mix together the remaining lemon juice and zest, then stir in the granulated sugar. 
11. spoon over the top, guiding the liquid towards the holes. 
12. leave to cool completely in the tin before serving.

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