I am back online! Hooray!
I have been sorely missing the girl with the wooden spoon and being able to write so here I am, and with a pretty cake.
If you don’t know me, the main focus of my year is my birthday. August 11th is the one day a year that I live for and all other days pale into insignifiance, except perhaps my best friend’s wedding day and my parents’ birthdays. August 11th is not far away and with this in mind, I present to you a beautiful birthday cake. I would be tremendously excited if somebody made this for me for my birthday (I have already requested a peanut butter, chocolate and ice cream cake from my personal chef, Anthony!) and last week, we made this for my friend Christine’s sister, Mandy’s, birthday.
It looked beautiful, especially on the lovely summer day, we made it. The icing looks like individual roses, and beneath the icing hides a lovely, fresh lemon cake. I would recommend using a buttercream that dries to a slightly stiff consistency because we used a carrot cake icing, from personal love of carrot cake icing, and without plenty of fridge action, the icing slid a little. The roses are super easy to make, like an inverse meringue, the only technical kit you need is a star shaped piping nozzle.
You could use any lemon cake beneath this and any icing you like but I would recommend using a buttercream of icing sugar, butter and milk. This I’ve found makes excellently stiff peaks. You could slice the cake in half, if you have crazily steady hands and an almost cake death wish, and add a layer of buttercream, jam or lemon curd and you could decorate with all manner of pretty items. I think Lakeland would have a mass of things you could use to decorate this, any excuse to go mad in Lakeland. Lakeland to me is like technological shops like Apple to boys! I adore it, I could spend hours in there, looking at cake wrappers and toppers and cleaning products that I would never use!
This is a pretty easy cake to make but make sure to leave plenty of time so that the cake is cool enough to add the icing. You’ll need plenty of icing too because it takes quite a lot. I times-ed my normal 12 cupcake recipe by two.
Lemon Rose Cake
- a 9 inch round tin with removable base
for the cake:
- 2 large eggs
- 200 g caster sugar
- zest of 1 lemon – finely grated
- 1/2 a lemon’s juice
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 280g plain flour
- 3 tsp baking powder
- 340g Greek yoghurt
- 120ml cooking oil, such as sunflower
for the icing:
- 500g cream cheese
- 100g icing sugar
- 250g unsalted butter, room temperature
- juice of 1/2 a lemon
- Preheat your oven to 180°C and line your cake tin with baking paper.
- In an electric mixer, or a mixing bowl with a beater, beat eggs and sugar until pale and thick, you’ll notice the mixture turning from yellow to white.
- To the mixed eggs and sugar, add the grated lemon zest, lemon juice and vanilla extract and stir these through until combined.
- In a large bowl, sift together the flour and baking powder using a sieve.
- Fold this flour mixture into your egg mixture, slowly with a wooden spoon, taking care not to let the air beat out of the cake. At this stage, it will seem rather thick, this will change when you add the oil in the next step.
- Mix in the yoghurt and then the oil.
- Add the mixture to the tin and place in your preheated oven for 30 minutes, ours took about 40 but all ovens are different, or until a cocktail stick inserted into the middle comes out clean.
- Leave cake in the tin to cool for 10 minutes, before transferring to a cake rack to cool.
- While the cake is cooling, make up the icing so that this can be placed in the fridge to set for a while. This will make the icing much easier to set. Add the icing sugar and butter to a bowl and whisk until a paste, then add the cream cheese until well whisked and the icing is of a greater volume.
- Place this in the fridge to cool for as long as possible.
- When the icing is chilled and the cake completely cooled, place the cake on a tray or plate so that you can easily reach all sides of the cake.
- Using a palette knife or a flat edged spatula, cover the cake in a smooth layer of icing so that the cake is completely covered so that no cake can be seen.
- When the cake is completely covered and smooth, take your piping bag (I always drape mine over a jug so the sides don’t stick back together but some people do this between their hand and thumbs) and fill with the icing.
- Because the icing can get quite warm against the body heat of your hand, I would recommend doing this in sizeable chunks to prevent this.
- With the icing bag, squeeze into where you want the centre of your rose, then pipe outwards in a circle, wrapping around like a meringue but inside out, finishing on the edge of your circle. It is easier to pipe the roses on the side of the cake and then the top. Continue until the entire cake is covered with your roses.
- When the icing is finished, place the cake in the fridge until an hour before serving.
*** If you wanted a two toned colour rose, you could brush the inside of the piping bag with a thick colouring paste (available in Lakeland, Hobbycraft and good cake supply companies) and then add your white icing. As you pipe, this will create a tinged colour to the edge of the flowers.***