- 250g pack unsalted butter, very soft, plus extra for the tin
- 3 unwaxed lemons
Oval in shape, with a pronouced bulge on one end, lemons are one of the most versatile fruits…
- 200g golden caster sugar
- 3 eggs
The ultimate convenience food, eggs are powerhouses of nutrition, packed with protein and a…
- 2 medium courgettes, coarsely grated (you'll need 300g/10oz flesh)
The courgette is a variety of cucurtbit, which means it's from the same family as cucumber,…
- 1 tsp poppy seed, plus extra to decorate
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 100g self-raising flour
- 100g plain wholemeal flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
Baking powder is a raising agent that is commonly used in cake-making. It is made from an alkali…
- 85g icing sugar
- 200g pack full-fat soft cheese
- 4 tbsp lemon curd (optional)
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Heat oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4. Butter 2 x 20cm sandwich tins and line the bases with baking parchment. Zest 2 lemons, then squeeze their juice into a separate bowl. Put 200g butter, the caster sugar, eggs, courgettes, poppy seeds, vanilla and lemon zest into a mixing bowl. Beat to a creamy batter. Stir in 1 tbsp lemon juice, the flours, baking powder and ¼ tsp salt. Spoon the mix into the tins, then bake for 25 mins or until risen, golden and springy in the middle.
Make a drizzle by mixing another tbsp lemon juice with 25g icing sugar. Put the remaining icing sugar and butter into a bowl, add the soft cheese, remaining lemon juice (about 2 tbsp) and grate in the final lemon’s zest. Beat to make a creamy, smooth frosting.
When the cakes are ready, cool for 15 mins in their tins, then turn onto a cooling rack. Prick several times with a cocktail stick, spoon over the drizzle and cool completely. Can be frozen at this stage for up to 1 month. Put one cake onto a serving plate and spread with just under half the frosting. Spread over the lemon curd, if using. Top with the second cake, spread the remaining frosting over the top and sprinkle with poppy seeds.
Baking with courgettes
Courgettes can hold quite a lot of water, which can affect the finished texture of your cake. If your grated courgettes seem watery, place them into a clean cloth and wring out some of the liquid into a bowl. Then add the courgettes to the cake mixture as normal. The timing for cakes containing courgette can depend on the water content of your courgettes, so return the cake to the oven for another 10 mins if it needs it. Simply test with a skewer and make sure it comes out clean.