At Easter I was doing a bit of baking for a big family lunch. I made a full cake from the Chocolate Guinness and Baileys Cupcakes and decided to play around with a recipe for a Lemon Cake too. So I made a version of this and covered it with a white chocolate ganache. I won’t show you a picture of the messy end result, but the cake itself was delicious! I decided that what it needed was a little more zing and citrus bite so I decided to make a curd to use in the filling. Also, because I just want to add mascarpone cream to everything at the moment, I mixed that with the lemon curd. I love the result. I’m not 100% happy with the photos for this cake but it was suggested to me that I should just make it again to take more pics! That’s when I know a recipe has worked.
I made the lemon curd to go with this recipe but feel free to use good shop bought curd if you like. You will only need about half of the amount below for this cake so you will have lovely curd leftover for breakfast. It is so tasty, you’ll probably just eat it straight from the jar. You can make the curd the day before you bake the cake to save time. Plain whipped cream will also work well in the middle and you can layer the curd and cream to look pretty if you’re better at these things than I am! You can also use raspberries or strawberries in the filling for contrast.
On a side note, I’m try to move my blog to self hosted so there may be some disruption here over the next couple of days, apologies if there is. I have no clue what I’m doing so there may be a LOT of disruption 🙂
For the Lemon Curd
- 100g of unsalted butter
- 2 eggs
- 2 egg yolks
- The zest of 1 lemon
- 150g of caster sugar
- 150ml of lemon juice, approx. 2 large lemons
For the Lemon Cake
- 150g of soft unsalted butter
- The zest and juice of one lemon
- 225g of caster sugar
- 4 eggs
- 75ml of buttermilk
- 1 tsp of vanilla extract
- 250g of plain flour
- 25g of cornflour
- 2 tsp of baking powder
- A pinch of salt
For the mascarpone cream
- 250g mascarpone cheese
- 50g caster sugar
- 300ml double cream
- 1 tsp of vanilla bean paste or vanilla extract
To decorate, some fresh raspberries and icing sugar
- To make the lemon curd, set up a bain marie by placing a heat proof bowl over a pan of gently simmering water. Do not allow the bottom of the bowl to touch the water. Melt the butter in the bowl.
- While the butter is melting whisk together the eggs, egg yolks, sugar and lemon zest until the mixture is light and has thickened.
- When the butter has melted, put in the egg and sugar mixture and pour in the lemon juice.
- Keep the curd over a low simmering temperature and keep stirring it until it has thickened up. This is usually faster than other curds. Don’t be tempted to increase the heat or you will end up with scrambled eggs. This needs to be cooked very gently.
- When the curd is thick, remove from the heat and allow it to cool. Place a layer of wax paper or clingfilm directly onto the surface of the curd to prevent a skin forming. Cover the bowl with clingfilm and put it in the fridge to set for a least an hour before using it. The curd will keep for a few days in a jar in the fridge.
- Preheat your oven to 180c/160c fan/gas mark 4. Grease and line the bottom of 2 8″/20cm sandwich pans with baking parchment.
- Cream together the butter and lemon zest. Gradually add the sugar and beat until combined and light and fluffy.
- Keep beating and add the eggs one at a time followed by a spoon of the flour after each egg. This is to help prevent curdling, but if it does curdle don’t worry it will come good again. Make sure each egg is fully incorporated before adding the next one. Add in the buttermilk, lemon juice and vanilla and mix well.
- Sieve the remaining flour, cornflour, baking powder and salt into the egg mixture. Do this from a bit of a height to get some air into the mixture. Gently fold the flour through the batter until it is fully combined but take care not to overwork the flour.
- Divide the batter between the 2 pans, I actually weigh them to make sure they are even but you don’t have to be so pedantic. Bake for approx. 25 minutes until the edges are coming away from the pan, the middle feels springy to the touch and a cake skewer comes out clean from the middle. Start checking from 20 minutes as all ovens vary.
- Allow the cakes to cool in the tin for 10 minutes before turning them out on to a wire rack to continue cooling.
- Make the mascarpone cream by whipping the cheese with the sugar until softened. In another bowl whip the cream until soft peaks have formed. Gently fold this into the mascarpone with the vanilla until fully combined.
- Add 6-7 tablespoons of the lemon curd into the mascarpone cream and fold it through. Taste it to see if you would like more curd.
- To assemble the cake, I spread a thin layer of lemon curd on the bottom sponge, top with the lemon cream mixture and gently place the second sponge on top. Decorate with fresh raspberries and a sprinkling of icing sugar. Then dot some messy blobs of curd if you like your cakes to look like a child decorated them!