My friend Erica is having a Cheese and Wine High Tea tomorrow. Not being the best of cooks (so she says), she's opted to have a savoury cheesy afternoon on the balcony of her country house overlooking the lovely Kerry countryside and her thoroughbred horse stud. The forecast is rain, but I'm still taking the hour long drive to go there. She's asked me to come earlier and to help her with the table, the decorations and the like.
"No cake at all?" I asked my dear Erica. I said I'd make something lemony and tangy and light, nothing heavy or oozy or chocolately. She loved the idea - after all the afternoon wouldn't be complete without tea or coffee. So here is our sweet accompaniment.
I hadn't made the above pictured creation before. Verdict? I'm absolutely delighted. Seriously delighted.
I've packed them away ready for the drive tomorrow. I'm thinking I'll take some whipped cream flavoured with a little icing sugar and Cointreau to pipe into the centre of each cake just prior to serving. Hmm. Perhaps with a little extra grated zest on top. Wow. I'm hoping they'll be a showpiece. I've tasted the results and oh my god - they are absolutely delicious. I do like a very tart lemony taste which I achieved with the syrup. Talk about heavenly balance with the sweetness of the cake.
I hope the lady who owns a cooking school in the Scenic Rim will be impressed as I'm looking forward to meeting her and hearing all about her school. Just one thing - stay away rain.
Little Lemon Cakelets
135gm unsalted butter
2 teaspoons finely grated lemon zest
1 cup caster sugar
3 eggs, separated
1 cup plain flour
1 heaped tablespoon SR flour
1/2 cup light sour cream
1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice, plus 1 tbs
2 tbs water
3/4 cup caster sugar
- Reserve one tablespoon of the sugar aside to go into the eggwhites.
- Place remaining sugar, lemon zest and butter in bowl; beat till pale and creamy.
- Beat in egg yolks, one at a time. Beat through sour cream till just combined.
- Thoroughly scrape and wash beaters. Whisk the eggwhites with the reserved tablespoon of sugar; till soft peaks form.
- Fold flour into cake mixture. Add half the beaten eggwhites; mix through; fold remaining eggwhites; try to be as lighthanded as possible at this stage.
- In a very well greased cake tin or very well greased cup cake baking tray, carefully spoon the mixture in - refrain from filling right to the brim if using a cup cake or muffin tray.
- Bake in a preheated slow oven for about twenty minutes.
- While this is baking, place the syrup ingredients into a small saucepan, gently stir over a low heat till the sugar is all dissolved. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and boil for about five minutes. Leave syrup on a barely warm hotplate to keep the syrup warm until the cakes come out.
- Once the cakes are cooked, leave in tin for about a minute or two. Tap tray gently. Upturn onto a cooling rack. Prick each small cake with a toothpick. Slowly add syrup to each cake with a teaspoon; baste with a brush more of the syrup around each cake. This needs to be done while the cake and the syrup is very warm.
- The quantities above are more than you will need for a normal twelve cup cake baking tray. I had enough cake mixture to barely cover the base of a small loaf tin. This I baked and basted with the leftover syrup. It was my taste test and it has a very big thumbs up (at least from me)!