Wednesday, 19 November 2014

Lemon Syrup Sponge Loaf

For me baking is all about taking the simple and the everyday and using but a few simple techniques, creating something really rather special indeed. There are so many wonderful ingredients available to the amateur baking fantasist these days that even recipes that at first glance seem a little, dare I say, ordinary can inspire delight and delectation.

Take this recipe for example. As unassuming as it may appear it punches well above it's weight in terms of both flavour and texture. Soft and syrupy, with a rich caramel flavour and just a hint of citrus coming through on the tongue it is a truly gratifying treat, particularly with a cup of tea or coffee. I also love it warm with cold cream or ice cream. Corr I might have a slice right now!

Prep time: 20 Mins
Baking time: 50-55 Mins
100g White Chocolate (Broken into small pieces)
150g Unsalted Butter
160g Light Muscovado Sugar
100g Ground Almonds
75g Plain Flour
1tsp Baking Powder
2 Large Eggs and 1 Yolk (Beaten)
2 Lemon Zest

For the syrup
The juice of 1 Lemon
2tbsp Golden Syrup

First things first, preheat the oven the 180C/350F/Gas 4, lightly grease a 1lb loaf tin and line with baking paper. Sit a heatproof bowl over a pan of simmering water. Add the white chocolate and butter, then let the steam from the water slowly melt the two together. Once melted, smooth and creamy set to one side to cool slightly.

In a fresh, large bowl mix together the sugar, almonds, plain flour and baking powder. Beat in the eggs and lemon zest, then add the melted chocolate and butter and mix to a smooth, consistent batter. Spoon into your prepared tin and bake in the centre of the oven for around 50-55 minutes, until a metal skewer can be cleanly removed when inserted into the middle of the cake.

When you are happy the cake is baked remove from the oven, leave in the tin for 5 minutes, before carefully turning out onto a wire rack. Using a small spoon or whisk mix together the lemon juice and golden syrup, then generously brush over the hot cake. Leave to cool and boom, you're all done.

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