|Lemon and elderflower drizzle cake|
At the beginning of May you could hardly the notice the elder trees growing down the many paths and alleyways around where I live. In between the two bank holidays the combination of warm sunshine plus plenty of rain means the abundance of buds has turned into a mass of elderflowers.
There is much folklore, myth and superstitions surrounding the Sambucus genus which the elder tree is part of. This is perhaps due to the usefulness of the plant for both culinary and medicinal purposes. Although I wouldn't advocate using the leaves to eat they are full of vitamin C and apparently make a very good remedy for ear infections whilst the bark of new small twigs can be made into a laxative. I'll leave it to you try these potions out...
I've never had the courage to make elderflower cordial myself. I know plenty of people do and even venture into elderflower wine and spot of the fizzy stuff. I thought the elderflower would combine nicely with the zing of the lemon in this cake with the granulated sugar giving it the necessary 'crunch'.
For my Love Cake challenge this month I have chosen the theme of flowers so this is very seasonal bake.
Equipment: 2lb (900g-1kg) loaf tin, electric whisk/beaters
4oz (110g) Unsalted butter, softened or baking spread
6oz (170g) Self raising flour
6oz (170g) Caster sugar
4 tbsp (60ml) Milk
Zest 1 lemon
2 Large eggs
4 tbsp (60ml) Undiluted Elderflower cordial
4 tbsp (60ml) Granulated sugar
1. Pre heat the oven to 160°C/Gas mark 4.
2. Grease and/or line the loaf tin.
3. In a large bowl add the all the cake ingredients and using the electric whisk beat together until smooth.
4. Spoon into the prepared tin and bake for an hour. Check the cake after 40 minutes in case it is cooking too quickly and cover the top with greaseproof paper if required.
5. Check the cake is cooked through by inserting a skewer and making sure it comes out clean.
6. In a small bowl or jug mix together the cordial and sugar.
7. Whilst the cake is still warm insert the skewer all over the cake and then evenly pour over the elderflower syrup.
8. Leave to cool in the tin.