Actress, author and cake baking supremo Jane Asher has revealed the secret to her most sumptuous easy-bake lemon drizzle cake – soaking in syrup (see her recipe below).
Jane made the cake in front of MFM’s eyes, as she announced a good-looking new bakeware range for Poundland. There are 50 pieces in the collection, in pastel colours – each for the sumly price of, yes, £1.
That means for a total of £5 you can get a cake tin, whisk, scales, bowl and spatula. There are also ceramic baking dishes in stylish colours, plus Cake Pop moulds, in the range which is out now in Poundlands across the country.
Jane got her love of baking from making gingerbread men and fairy cakes with her own mum.
Her recommended recipe to make with your children is Jane’s very own Soaked Lemon Drizzle Cake.
“I’m a great fan of lemon, and used to eat raw slices of lemon when I was younger,” says Jane, “but if your taste isn’t for as sharp things as mine is, then this would work equally well with orange juice. It’s the soaking in syrup that’s the crucial bit, giving the cake its special, moist texture and fruity taste.”
SOAKED LEMON DRIZZLE CAKE
175g spreadable butter
175g castor sugar
3 medium eggs, lightly beaten
Grated zest of 1 unwaxed lemon and the juice of 2 (about 3 tablespoons)
175g self-raising flour
3 tbsps milk
50g granulated sugar
50g sieved icing sugar
A little lemon juice
Pre-heat the oven to 1780°C (165°C fan assisted, 350°F).
With your child
Line the bottom and sides of a 900g (21x10x6cm) loaf tin with baking parchment or a liner, to come a couple of centimetres above the top edge.
Cream the butter and sugar together, beating well until really pale and fluffy.
Add the egg little by little, beating well all the time.
Add the grated lemon zest, then gently fold in the flour and salt.
Stir in the milk, then turn the mixture into the prepared loaf tin.
Best for just adults
Bake for about 35-45 minutes, until springy to the touch and a knife inserted in the centre comes out clean. Remove from the oven but leave in the tin.
Put the sugar and lemon juice into a small pan and bring it to the boil, stirring all the time as the sugar dissolves
Boil strongly for about half a minute.
Make several holes in the cake with a skewer, going right to the bottom of the tin. Pour the hot syrup all over the cake, letting it seep into the holes.
With your child
Leave to cool. Carefully lift the cake from the tin, by holding the edges of the paper or silicon. Gently peel away the paper or liner.
Add the lemon juice little by little to icing sugar, beating well, until it is of pouring consistency but not too runny.
Drizzle over the top of the cake and let it run down the sides.