This cake is so mouth wateringly lemony and is inspired by my recent trip to Sorrento that has the most amazing lemons which they use to produce the liqueur limoncello.
Sorrento in Italy is probably my favourite ever place! Its so so so pretty and has the most amazing food. Whilst I was there I took a little tour into the lemon groves to see where the lemons grow. Because they grow naturally without any pesticides they grow literally huge and are so juicy and have so much more flavour than English lemons. I also visited the little factories and learnt how the Italians make their famous limoncello and I brought a small bottle home with me so I could make this cake.
If you don’t happen to have a bottle of limoncello lying around, you could just use freshly squeezed lemon juice which would work perfectly as well! Alternatively this is a little link to a limoncello recipe I found which could be quite fun to make! It also can be bought in a few supermarkets in England so you could have a little shop around and treat yourself to a bottle 🍸.
(for the cake)
- 180g self raising flour
- 180g unsalted butter
- 180g caster sugar
- 1 tsp. baking powder
- grated zest of 4 lemons (unwaxed)
- 2 tbsp. limoncello
- 3 large eggs
(for the filling)
- 4 tbsp. lemon curd (you could make your own but I had a spare jar I needed to use up)
- 1 tbsp. limoncello
(for the topping)
- Yellow fondant icing
- Additional decorations (I used some spare pastry flowers I had made, white chocolate hearts, mini yellow flower sprinkles, mini white heart sprinkles, yellow sprinkles and small edible pearls.
- Line two 18cm cake tins with greaseproof paper and preheat the oven to gas mark 3, 160°C electric or 140°C fan oven.
- Sift the flour into a large mixing bowl along with the baking power.
- Add in the caster sugar and give a quick stir so everything is mixed.
- Make sure the butter is at room temperature, cut it up slightly smaller into cubes and then add to the bowl- no need to mix anything together yet, this is a mix all in one cake!
- Add in the lemon zest, limoncello and the 3 eggs and then with an electric whisk, mix everything together for a couple of minutes until the constancy of the cake mix is lovely and smooth- it is perfect when all the lumps of butter have disappeared.
- Tip the mixture evenly into the 2 lined tins and place onto the middle shelf of the preheated oven.
- Bake for approximately 20 mins, I have a gas oven and this amount of time made the perfect cake for me. As always you can tell if the cake is perfectly baked if a skewer inserted comes out clean.
- Leave the cakes to cool in their tins for about 15 mins before removing and placing onto a cooling wrack to cool completely.
- To make the lemon curd filling simply place 4 tbsp. of the curd into a bowl, add 1 tbsp. limoncello and mix until it is all combined (obviously I have cheated in this step and it is much better to make your own curd, I was just very sneaky and didn’t have enough eggs or butter left to make a curd and very luckily had a jar which needed using anyways).
- Once the cakes are completely cooled transfer the bottom layer onto a plate/ board which you are going to be using to serve the cake- this is much easier to do now than when the cake is all assembled and pretty.
- Using a tablespoon, spread 2/3 of the lemon curd mixture onto the top of the bottom later, spreading it all out evenly nearly, but not quite, to the edge of the cake.
- Place the top layer of the cake on top of this and again using a tablespoon spread the remaining curd mixture evenly on top leaving a couple of centimeteres space around the edge of the cake.
- Roll out some yellow fondant icing (I think plain white icing would also look really pretty) with a rolling pin, making sure you sprinkle a little icing sugar onto the work surface and the rolling pin to stop the icing from sticking. I used the circular base of a slightly smaller cake tin as a template to cut out a perfectly sized circle to fit on top of the cake.
- Place the yellow icing on top of the cake making sure you get it perfectly in the middle.
- To stick the toppings onto to fondant icing, boil the kettle and pour a small amount of boiling water into a little bowl. Wet a clean paintbrush or cotton bud in the boiling water and dab this onto wherever you would like to stick the decorations onto the icing. The water makes the icing slightly sticky so when you place the decoration on top, press down gently and when the water dries the decorations should stick on top also.
Hope you all 💛 💛 💛 this lemony cake!
Charlotte x x x