lemon semolina syrup cakes

I ordered Yotam Ottolenghi and Helen Goh's book 'Sweet' as soon as it became available. I've been so busy I haven't had a chance to make anything from the book until now. I took a quick look through the book last weekend and came upon this recipe for lemon semolina syrup cakes. I checked the pantry and I had all the supplies so quickly put the cakes together.

Instead of sliced lemon as suggested in the recipe, I found a few slices of candied lemon in the fridge and used that instead to top the cakes. The candied lemon did tend to sink into the cakes so next time I'd either top the cakes halfway through the baking time or after they've come out of the oven.

To ensure the cakes are nice and moist 
they're doused in syrup as soon as they're baked.

Here's the recipe for you. For all my recipes I use a 250ml cup and a 20ml tablespoon, unsalted butter and 60 gram eggs. My oven is a regular gas oven not fan forced, so you may need to reduce your oven temperature by 20ºC.

Lemon Semolina Syrup Cakes – makes 8

100g almond meal
70g semolina flour
½ tsp baking powder
⅛ tsp salt
120g unsalted butter, room temperature
135g caster sugar
Finely grated rind of 1 lemon
2 large eggs, beaten to blend
20mls fresh lemon juice

60mls fresh lemon juice
50g sugar

½ lemon finely sliced into 8 or 4 candied lemon slices, halved

Candied Lemon Slices
1 small lemon thinly sliced and seeds removed
⅔ cup caster sugar
⅔ cup water

Candied Lemon Slices
In a frypan combine the sugar and water, place over a low heat stirring occasionally until the sugar dissolves. Bring to a gentle boil and cook for 5 - 8 minutes or until the toffee starts to turn golden. Add the lemon slices and turn frequently until the lemon slices are golden and well coated about 3 - 5 minutes. Remove the slices and place on baking paper. Allow to cool at room temperature.

Preheat oven to 180°C/350°F. Line 8 cups of a standard 12-cup muffin pan with paper liners. Whisk almond flour, semolina flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl to combine. Using an electric mixer on high speed, beat butter, sugar, and lemon zest until very light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. With motor running, gradually add eggs and beat until glossy, about 1 minute. Add dry ingredients and lemon juice and beat to combine, about 1 minute. Divide batter among muffin cups and top with a slice of lemon or a piece of candied lemon slice. Bake until cakes are golden brown and a tester inserted into the centre comes out clean, 25–35 minutes.

Make the syrup while the cakes are baking. Bring lemon juice, and sugar to a boil in a small saucepan over medium heat, stirring to dissolve sugar; reduce heat and simmer 2-3 minutes. Remove from heat. As soon as cakes come out of the oven, brush or spoon syrup liberally over top. Transfer pan to a wire rack and let cakes cool completely before turning out. Cakes can be made 3 days ahead. Store airtight at room temperature

I've made many Ottolenghi cakes before and they've all been delicious so my expectations were high. I wasn't disappointed. The cakes were moist, lemony and delicious.

See you all again soon. 

Bye for now,


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