I've had the last week off work, and other than Monday being pretty rough (I locked myself out, and my skirt broke while I was locked out), it has been lovely. I have baked, and worked on my bread making skills. I've spent a lot of time sitting at our kitchen table, reading blogs and Pinning things and chatting on twitter. I have read many books, more than I would usually read in a month. On Tuesday, in stark contrast to the weather last week, we got 4 inches of snow. I responded to it by making soup and cake, and watching all of series two of Downton in one sitting. We have had proper, homecooked, healthy food every day, the flat is ship-shape, and I am pretty close to the bottom of the washing pile of doom.
|Not quite the 20c temps of last week...|
|I made actual bread that was edible and not too dense!|
And so, today. The very last day of my holidays. Today has been filled with Eastery joy. We aren't at all religious, so our Easter is more of a societal thing and centres around food, if I am honest. Dave gave me a bag of small chocolate eggs, a chocolate bunny, and a gingerbread biscuit decorating kit. Breakfast was toasted. buttered hot-cross buns, and was followed by decorating the gingerbread biscuits. Bits of chocolate have been eaten throughout the day. Our Easter lunch of roast pork - no sacrificial lamb for us, pork is cheaper) happened around 5pm (a little late). It was followed by lemon cake - cobble together yesterday evening, when I had the urge to bake and absolutely no desire to leave the house to buy things specially. I have at least tripled the lemon the original recipe required, but added honey, and it did the trick.
|...and after. Dave decorated one of the five. I bet you can guess which!|
|How I spend my Easter holiday.|
Lemon Cake with Honey
|Y to the UM|
150g self-raising flour
3 medium eggs
200g caster sugar
3tbsp lemon juice (half a lemon worth)
1tbsp lemon extract
zest of 1 lemon, finely grated (save a little for top of cake if wanted)
75g butter, softened
150g icing sugar plus 1tbsp extra for dusting
3tbsp lemon juice
1tsp lemon extract
- preheat oven to 180c
- for cake, beat together wet ingredients, and the incorporate dry
- bake for 45mins to 1hour, or until top of cake is springy and golden (mine could have done with 5 minutes less I think)
- turn out onto cooling rack
- for icing - this is cheating, but, put butter in an oven proof mixing bowl
- put in still hot oven for a couple of minutes - should be very soft but not liquid
- add rest of ingredients, and mix well. It will be slightly more liquid than butter icing is usually, but firms up
- when cake is cool, spread icing on top - for iced sides, make this mixture plus half again
- leave to firm up
- dust with icing sugar, and add zest.
This is a somewhat dense cake - somewhere between loaf cake and blondie texture. If you'd like a fluffier cake, beating the eggs and sugar till fluffy and adding a tsp of bicarb will do the trick. Also, I like the sharp freshness of lemon, but sharpness is easily adjusted with a little extra honey - in cake, add the same quantity of flour as added honey.
Now, I'm away to have tea and some more cake and gingerbread, watch Mary Poppins and savour the last few hours of my holiday. Did everyone see Elizabeth and Lynne in The Times today, looking lovely and extolling the virtues of vintage china? We rarely by newspapers, save the odd Saturday Guardian, but I had to get a copy when I saw that they were in it!