Made these to follow on from Jennie cooking a sausage casserole (separate Quorn for me) based on a Grauniad recipe from yesterday, as the oven was on I made pudding. They're very nice, and very sour, citrussy cakes. And I really do mean sour.

Theoretically, I bake these so we've something nice to finish and some left for the next day. 12 of them, 4 of us, 3 each, they're all gone almost immediately, every time...

  • 3 oz Butter/baking fat/margerine (softened if necessary)
  • 3 oz Caster Sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 3 oz Self Raising Flour
  • 1 oz dry Semolina (or ground almonds or rice flour, I'm allergic to almonds so I substitute)
  • Juice of 2 limes (or just pour in what looks like enough from a bottle of lime juice)

Plus, for the topping
  • Zest of one lime, pared using a zester
  • Juice of 2 limes (or see above)
  • 2 oz sugar (any, I used granulated)

Right, simple method. Preheat oven to 180oC, 12 cake cases in a tray ready for you.

Cream the fat and sugar in a bowl until light and fluffy, slowly beat in the egg in smallish amounts (if you've never done this before say in comments and I'll do more detail). Add the flour and semolina (sifted if necessary to get lumps out), folding in, then fold in the lime juice. Divide into the cases and put in oven for 20 to 25 minutes.

In the meantime, make the topping, put your zest into a pan, add the juice and the sugar, mix it then put on the hob on a low heat, slowly bring it to the boil, stirring regularly. When it's boiling, lower the heat to minimum to simmer it until it turns into a nice sticky syrup, normally takes about 5 minutes. NB I did this bit while eating the main course, stirring regularly is not the same as stirring constantly.

Ideally, the syrup'll be ready just before the cakes are-they need to be a golden brown colour. Get them out of the oven, immediately prick the tops with a skewer or just a fork, then spoon some of the syrup (including zesty bits) over each cake, try to make sure most of it soaks into the cake not flowing over the side. It is a sugar syrup just off the heat, it will be HOT, bear that in mind.

When you've got all the syrup spread around the cakes, put them onto a wire rack and allow to cool until, ideally, actually room temperature, but normally they don't last long enough in our house. The syrup itself is very nice in small quantities on its own, but very sour. Which we like.

Right, job done. You can use the exact same recipt for oranges (one orange instead of two limes) or lemons (1 and a half lemons), and theoretically more sugar in the syrup'll reduce the sourness, but I wouldn't want to. You could also add a bit of ground ginger to the cake mix (for lime) or ground cinnamon if you're doing the orange variant.
matgb: Artwork of 19th century upper class anarchist, text: MatGB (Default)

British Liberal, house husband, school play leader and stepdad. Campaigner, atheistic feminist, amateur baker. Male.

Known to post items of interest on occasions. More likely to link to interesting stuff. Sometimes talks about stuff he's done. Occasionally posts recipes for good food. Planning to get married, at some point. Enjoying life in Yorkshire.

Likes comments. Especially likes links. Loves to know where people came from and what they were looking for. Mostly posts everything publicly. Sometimes doesn't. Hi.

Mat Bowles

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October 2015


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I'm the Chair of the Brighouse branch of the Liberal Democrats.

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