Lemon & elderflower loaf cake

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This is a recipe I spotted a couple of days ago as I was having a recipe sort-out. I am a terrible hoarder (as Mr Birdie will confirm) and hold on to all sorts of magazines thinking I might make a recipe from them one day. Periodically I go through them all cutting out the recipes I want to keep. This recipe was from a Waitrose Weekend newspaper back in March and is by Martha Collison (one of last year’s GBBO contestants). As we were off on a picnic with my university friends I thought this would be a good bake to take along as it would be easy to cut and would hopefully survive the journey intact. It would also make good use of the elderflower cordial that I made.

This was very popular with my friends and even Mr Birdie (who declares elderflower as being ‘too flowery’) tried some. The elderflower is very subtle but as one of friends described it ‘you can definitely tell there’s something else in there’! You will need a 1kg loaf tin. It’s very simple to make and can be whipped up in just over an hour.

Ingredients:
For the cake:
125g unsalted butter (softened)
175g caster sugar
2 medium eggs
Zest of 1 lemon
175g self-raising flour
Pinch of salt
4 tablespoons milk

For the icing:
100g icing sugar
4 tablespoons elderflower cordial
Lemon zest (to decorate)

Method:
1) Preheat the oven to 180C/Gas 4. Grease a 1kg loaf tin and line the base with baking parchment (make sure it is well-greased as I lost a bit of the side of my cake when it got stuck).
2) Using an electric whisk (or free-standing mixer) cream together the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Then beat in the eggs and lemon zest.

3) Add the flour and salt, stirring until the mixture is well combined, then add the milk.

4) Spoon into the prepared tin and place in the oven. Bake for 45-50 minutes or until risen, golden brown and an inserted skewer comes out clean.

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5) Mix together the icing sugar with elderflower cordial to make a runny icing. Drizzle over the hot cake, top with lemon zest and leave to cool completely before serving.

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