Recipe Sweet, sour and savoury almond & lemon cake

Hemulen

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Sweet, sour and savoury almond & lemon cake
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Serves 10-12 | Preparation and baking time 60 min

This unconventional cake tastes like salty caramel, fruit chutney or sweetened bread.

Ingredients / Cake Crust
✧ 4 free range eggs​
✧ 190 g/6.7 oz/0.42 lb canned lemons or 2 steamed (~30 min) whole lemons for a less salty bitter lemon cake​
✧ 460 g/1 lb sweetened apple sauce (or apple jam – if so, reduce the amount of sugar)​
✧ 150 g/5.3 oz/0.33 lb almond butter (canned, roasted almond paste)​
✧ 300 g/10.6 oz/0.66 lb (~330 ml/1.4 cups) caster sugar​
✧ 150 g/5.3 oz/0.33 lb (~150 ml/0.6 cups) crème fraîche/sour cream​
✧ 150 ml/0.6 cups sunflower oil​
✧ 260 g/9.2 oz/0.6 lb (~500 ml/2.1 cups) plain flour/apf​
Ingredients / Icing
✧ 150 g/5.3 oz/0.33 lb (~150 m/0.6 cups) crème fraîche/sour cream​
✧ 3 tablespoons sunflower oil​
✧ 400 ml/1.7 cups icing sugar​
✧ 3 teaspoons vanilla sugar​
✧ 100 g/0.22 lb/3.5 oz cape gooseberries/physalis berries (save a few for garnish)​
✧ a tiny dollop of red and yellow food coloring (optional)​
✧ 2 tablespoons plain flour/apf​
✧ 1 egg yolk​
The Rest of the Ingredients
✧ 2 tablespoons soft butter and a handful of breadcrumbs to line the baking tray/tin​
✧ 50 ml/0.2 cups lemon juice (squeezed or bottled)​
✧ 100 ml/0.4 cups (~83 g/3 oz) caster sugar​
✧ 100 ml/0.4 cups water​
✧ 100 g/0.22 lb/3.5 oz nonpareils/hundreds and thousands​

Instructions
  1. Line an edged baking tray with soft butter and breadcrumbs.
  2. Set the oven to 175°C/350°F/gas mark 4, no fan.
  3. Rinse the canned lemons for several minutes under running water to discard excess salt; drain well.
  4. For the crust, mix the eggs, canned lemons, apple sauce, almond butter, caster sugar, crème fraîche (150 g) and sunflower oil in a blender/mixer until smooth. If you use steamed lemons, halve them and discard the seeds before mixing.
  5. Mix the baking powder and flour and add into the mixture.
  6. Pour the batter evenly into the baking tray/tin and bake in the oven for 30-35 minutes (until set, light brown and slightly detached from the edges).
  7. Mix 50 ml lemon juice and 100 ml water and dilute 100 ml of caster sugar in the liquid.
  8. Using a tablespoon, moisten the warm cake crust with the lemon juice mix.
  9. For the icing, mix the crème fraîche, sunflower oil, icing sugar, vanilla sugar, gooseberries and food coloring in a blender/mixer.
  10. Pour the icing mixture into a skillet/frying pan and turn on medium heat.
  11. Whisk 2 tablespoons of plain flour (preferably through a sieve) and an egg yolk into the mixture and blend carefully until the mixture thickens. Take aside and let cool.
  12. Spread the icing on top and sprinkle the nonpareils.
  13. Garnish with cape gooseberries.
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Morning Glory

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What fun! Its certainly unusual. I like the use of physalis (Cape gooseberry), which is a little used ingredient here. To me the cake sounds more 'sweet and sour' than 'savoury'.

Now I have to ask, what do you mean by:
canned lemons

I've never come across lemons in a can. Do you mean pickled lemons, Moroccan style?
 

Hemulen

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What fun! Its certainly unusual. I like the use of physalis (Cape gooseberry), which is a little used ingredient here. To me the cake sounds more 'sweet and sour' than 'savoury'.

Now I have to ask, what do you mean by:


I've never come across lemons in a can. Do you mean pickled lemons, Moroccan style?
Yes, the pickled ones. I've never cooked with them before. These ones were super salty: thus the "savoury" addition.
I didn't really like the taste of the cake 🙈. It was too savo(u)ry and unconventional for my palate. The physalis icing tasted nice - it might work well as a substitute for butter-cheese frosting on a carrot cake.
 
Last edited:

Hemulen

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Beautiful!
Thank you, ElizabethB. I hope that could be said of the taste, too. If you like bitter lemon curd with plenty of salt, this may be the cake for you. If not, you'd better replace the pickled/canned lemons with steamed ones (MG's tip). For a conventional, less tangy lemon cake you could substitute the whole lemons with 2-3 teaspoons of lemon zest and a dash of milk or cream.
 
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