Speckled springtime lemon and white chocolate cake
Waitrose and Partners

Speckled springtime lemon & white chocolate cake

by Jane Hornby

A cake speckled like a golden egg (paintbrush at the ready) and topped with simple candied lemons

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Vegetarian
  • Serves12
  • CourseDessert
  • Prepare45 mins
  • Cook30 mins
  • Total time1 hr 15 mins
  • Pluscooling

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Ingredients

  • 250g butter, very soft, plus extra for greasing
  • 4 tbsp sunflower oil
  • 300g caster sugar
  • 2 unwaxed lemons, finely grated zest and juice (to give about 90ml)
  • 6 British Blacktail Medium Free Range Eggs
  • 300g self-raising flour
  • 30g cornflour
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 100g Cooks’ Ingredients White Chocolate, finely chopped
  • 1 unwaxed lemon, finely grated zest, then thinly sliced
  • 300ml double cream
  • 50g caster sugar
  • 1 tsp Cooks’ Ingredients Gold (or Silver) Lustre Spray
  • ½ tsp clear spirit such as gin or vodka
  • Small handful blueberries, some thinly sliced
  • 2 tsp Cooks’ Ingredients Pretty Rose Petals
  • 2 sprig/s lemon thyme, picked into tufts

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 180ºC, gas mark 4. Butter, then line, 3 x 20cm sandwich tins. Using electric beaters, cream the butter, oil, sugar and lemon zest until fluffy and almost white. Beat in the eggs 1 at a time, waiting for each egg to disappear before adding the next. Mix the flour and cornflour, sift ½ of this over the batter, then fold in with a large metal spoon.

  2. Pour the lemon juice into a measuring jug. Add the vanilla, then enough cold water to make it up to 150ml. Pour this into the bowl and fold in (don’t worry about it looking split). Sift over the rest of the flour mix and fold in to a mousse-like batter. Divide between the tins, level, then bake for 25 minutes, or until risen and pale golden. Cool on a rack.

  3. For the ganache, put the chopped chocolate into a mixing bowl with the lemon zest. Bring the cream to the boil in a small pan, then pour it over the chocolate and whisk until melted. Cool, then cover and chill until completely cold, for at least 2 hours.

  4. For the candied lemons, put the sugar into a small saucepan with 50ml water and the lemon slices. Cover and simmer gently for 15-20 minutes, after which the lemons will be translucent, in a puddle of lemony syrup. Cool.

  5. Whip the cold ganache to the texture of thick Greek yogurt. Use generous spoonfuls and a palette knife to sandwich the cakes on a plate, then use the rest to cover the top and sides. It will be fairly thin around each sponge, deeper at the joins. Mix the lustre with the alcohol to single cream thickness. Dip in a small paintbrush, pull the bristles back with the other hand and flick. Do this all over the cake and the plate. Chill for up to 3 days, but ideally don’t eat the cake cold from the fridge.

  6. To serve, put the candied lemon slices on top and a few around the side, then drizzle a little of the lemon syrup around. If liked, scatter blueberries, rose petals and lemon thyme over the cake and plate. More gold speckles on the berries look great, too.

Cook’s tip

If you don’t have 3 matching sandwich tins, save 1 /3 of the batter and it will bake once you’ve had a chance to wash, butter and re-line a tin. If you prefer a thicker layer of ganache or a neater look, use 450ml double cream and 150g chocolate, plus the zest of another unwaxed lemon. Use 2 /3 of the ganache for layers and a first coating over the top and sides, chill, then coat with the remaining 1 /3. Lemon curd between the layers would also be a nice touch.

Nutritional

Typical values per serving when made using specific products in recipe

Energy

2,526kJ/ 606kcals

Fat

39g

Saturated Fat

22g

Carbohydrates

55g

Sugars

35g

Fibre

1.1g

Protein

7g

Salt

0.7g

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