Lovely and Lusciously Layered Lemon Cake

Hello, if you really don’t want to hear me waxing lyrical about this Lovely and Lusciously Layered Lemon Cake then click here to go straight to the recipe!

‘lliterattion looms large on littered [b]log-post linked to Lemons

So that was a fairly weak subheading, apologies for that.  However I think we may have something for you to bake that will definitely make up for it!  We made today’s nombles as it was a relatives birthday and they don’t like their desserts too sweet or chocolatey, so this cake was right up their street!
Light and and airy with just enough Lemon tart-ness to add some extra zip to the taste, this cake ticked all of our boxes and we are sure it will be a firm favourite with all our readers too.

We found this recipe from the delightful Delia’s Online Site which is also in her book; Delia’s Cakes- also highly recommended.  In true ‘Baking for Idiots’ style, we have simply added a few hints and tips for those of us not so blessed in the baking department as well as a couple of small tweaks here and there to make it just so.

Luscious Layered Lemon Cake complete with Mug of Tea
Luscious Layered Lemon Cake complemented nicely with a cup of Tea


Makes: 1x Delicious 18cm Cake

Prep time: Cake- 35 minutes, Curd- 20 minutes (which can be whilst cake is cooking)

Cooking time: Cake- 20-25 minutes, Curd- 20 minutes

Equipment: 2x 18cm Cake tins, mixing bowl, sieve, whisk, serrated knife

NB- please allow for cake to cool completely within your allocated cake creation time


For the cake:
175g self-raising flour
1 level teaspoon baking powder
175g spreadable butter
175g golden caster sugar
3 large eggs
1 large lemon- grated zest
1 tablespoon lemon juice

For the lemon curd:
zest and juice of 1½ large lemons
110g golden caster sugar
3 large eggs
75g butter

For the icing:
150ml double cream
1 lemon, zested (for decoration)

What to do

Firstly pre-heat your fan oven to 170C.

Prepare the 2 cake tins. This involves lining the base with a circle of baking paper and greasing the sides with a thin layer of butter to avoid sticking.

Sieve the flour into a large mixing bowl, and add the other ingredients, mixing with an electric whisk will make this easier.

Note: softening the butter before adding will also ease the mixing process.

Layered Lemon Curd Cake Mixture
Layered Lemon Curd Cake Mixture

When you have a smooth consistency, divide the mixture equally between the two cake tins. Smooth the mixture and place in the oven for 20-25 mins. Cakes will be cooked when top springs back after light touch.

While cakes are baking you can get cracking with the curd.  First off place the grated lemon zest and sugar in one bowl.  Then, in another bowl, whisk the lemon juice together with the eggs, and pour this over the sugar+zest in the first bowl.

Next up we add the butter to the mixture and place the bowl over a pan of barely simmering water (making sure the bowl is not touching the water). Whizz up with a whisk every now and then until thickened, which should take about 20 minutes.  Be aware that the cake may well have finished baking before the curd has fully thickening up, so a degree of multitasking may be needed!

Lemon Curd Thickening Up over Boiling Water
Lemon Curd Thickening Up over Boiling Water

When the cake is removed from the oven (sure we don’t have to remind you but do remember to switch the oven off!), leave it for 30 seconds or so before running a knife around the edge of the tin to loosen it.  Then remove the cakes from the tins onto a cooling tray, ensuring to take the baking paper off as it does not taste so good, and leave to cool completely with top side facing up.

When the cakes have cooled down completely, carefully cut each one horizontally in two with a long serrated knife.

Lemon Cake Mid-Slice (with Serrated Knife)
Lemon Cake Mid-Slice (with Long Serrated Knife)

Now use most of the lemon curd to cement all 4 pieces of cakes together, saving 2 tablespoons-worth for the icing.

Whizz the cream until it thickens, which might be a little while!  When this is done, fold the remaining lemon curd into the cream and use it to ice both the top and sides of the cake (preferably top first though!).

To finish, sprinkle with the lemon zest and then tuck in!

Layered Lemon Cake complete with Birthday Candle
Layered Lemon Cake complete with Birthday Candle

Any questions or comments, please do let us know below.

And remember, if it doesn’t turn out quite right or if Lemon is just not your thing:

“When life gives you lemons, make grape juice and sit back and watch the world ask how you did it.”


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