I realise it's been a while since I did any baking. Not quite the same as saying that no cake has been eaten; we've been to rather a lot of groups recently that meet in lovely coffee shops, so most of my recent cake has been from outside the house, no complaints, but it's definitely time to bake something.
One Monday I picked up a couple of lemons and some butter from our local shop with the intention of making a lemon cake. Then somehow the days passed and still no cake, so yesterday I finally got round to whisking together all the ingredients and putting them in the oven. I love lemon cake. To me it's the perfect balance between sweet and sharp, and the crunchy lemon and sugar topping makes for good texture variation. I used to use a very basic 100g butter, 100g sugar, 2 eggs, 100g self-raising flour and the zest of one lemon recipe, with 100g sugar and the juice of a lemon for the topping, and it was good. But one day my friend Fluffy Owl (not an actual owl) introduced me to Annie Bell's recipe in her book Gorgeous Cakes, and I haven't looked back. The cake is so much more moist, and wonderfully crumbly. It is delicious. And my husband was pleased to see a lemon cake, it's been a while! Even my son eats it, in spite of the lack of icing. The perfect cake.
And while we're on the subject of things lemony, I was very excited to see Mr Kipling's Easter selection in Sainsbury's yesterday. Mr Kipling's French Fancies are one of my guilty pleasures, but my favourites are the lemon ones. In a standard box of 8 you only get 2 lemon ones, and they always go first, but during the lead-up to Easter you can buy boxes that contain only the lemon ones. So obviously a box ended up in the basket. Might finish eating the lemon cake first though!