Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Lovely Celebration Lemon Layer Cake

My lovely parents recently celebrated a whopping 35 years of married life together! Ahhh, I think they are the cutest couple ever! So in honour of their special celebration I decided to make a cake!

I usually never need to give the cake flavour a second thought - I always go for chocolate - but because this one wasn't for me, and because my Mam isn't really a fan of all the chocolate things I make, I asked the two of them what flavour  they would like. In the end we all agreed on lemon. That may have been the only other option I gave them but sure they were still happy with it!

So if you are planning on making a cake for someone who likes lemon flavoured stuff you should give this a go, and here's all you need to know to make it...

This makes two 20cm (8inch) cakes, which are then sandwiched together to make one lemon layer cake. (Don't make my mistake and use the wrong size tins!!)


  • 225g golden caster sugar
  • 225g self-raising flour (sifted)
  • 11/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 25g cornflour
  • 225g unsalted butter (at room temperature)
  • 4 large eggs (organic or free range)
  • Grated zest and juice of two large juicy lemons

  • Preheat the oven to 170C(fan)/190C/375F/gas mark 5
  • Grease and baseline two 20cm cake tins
  • Cream the butter and sugar in a bowl, using an electric hand mixer, until the mixture is pale and smooth
  • Combine the dry ingredients in a seperate bowl
  • Add the eggs to the creamed mixture, one at a time, mixing for a few minutes after each addition, alternating with the dry ingredients, and finally the grated zest and lemon juice
  • Beat well after each addition, but again do not over beat

    • Divide the mixture evenly between the tins and bake in the oven for about 25 minutes until raised and golden brown 
    • Insert a skewer in the centre of one of the  cakes - it should come out clean if it is cooked
    • Remove from the oven and leave the cakes in their tins for about 10 minutes before turning out on to a wire rack to cool
    • Peel the greaseproof paper from the base of the cakes
    • Leave to cool while you go and prepare the icing

      Lemon Buttercream Icing

      • 110g unsalted butter (at room temperature)
      • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
      • Grated zest of 1-2 unwaxed lemons (you need 2 teaspoons)
      • 500g icing sugar (sifted)


        • In a large mixing bowl beat the butter, lemon juice, lemon zest and half the icing sugar until smooth
        • Gradually add the remainder of the icing sugar and beat again until smooth and creamy
        • Ice the first layer and then the scond and put one on top of the other
        • Then decorate to your hearts content! 

        And... it turned out tasting delicious; lovely and lemony. The only thing that went a bit wrong was the fact it turned out a bit flat and it didn't look exactly like the picture in the book. I realised when it was too late that I used 9 inch  cakes tins when I should have used 8 inch ones. Who knew that little inch would make such of a difference? Well, it really did. Oopsy, lesson learned.

        I tried to distract from the fact that it was a flat lemon layer cake by  going a tad overboard with the decorations! And throwing candles and everything on top of it. So with the amount of fuss on top and the delicious taste, nobody really noticed it wasn't as high as most regular cakes. Or at least they never said they did! And the happy couple loved it so that was all I was hoping for.

        Has anybody got any good ideas for celebration or birthday cakes? if so I'd love to hear about them!

        Again I got this recipe from my Cupcakes from the Primrose Bakery book. Although I love this book I am going to put it  away now to rest on top of a bookshelf for a while.  I've decided after getting a bit of a sugar headache from eating too many of the Halloween cupcakes that I am going to try and make my future baked creations healthy ones! Hopefully they will be healthy and taste nice. That's the plan anyway.


        1. This lemon fan likes the sound of that cake, and you've decorated it ever so festively. Many congratulations to your mother and father; they must be a great partnership.

          I am ever so haphazard with cake tin sizes and have often paid the price for it.

        2. Happy anniversary to your parents Clare!
          I'm with you in that I usually go for chocolate overload with desserts, but whenever I have lemon cakes,etc. I always really enjoy them...especially ones with luscious lemon icing like this one, yum!

        3. Yummy! Lemon, my fav! If you ever need a taste tester let me know, otherwise I may have to try it out myself! Congrats to Cora and Brian!

        4. Ps. I'm really impressed with the photography. All the pics look amazing!

        5. Most delicious! How exciting to have had you visit my blog! I adore all things Irish (indeed all things British & Welsh too) but alas I have yet to visit the Emerald Isle. However, when I do - I would hope to find cakes as yummy as yours.... to drink with my tea of course!

        6. Thanks ladies! Glad to hear there are lemon fans out there! Brown Paper Packages you definitely must make your way across to this side of the world and try our baked goods! and tea!!!

        7. Lemon layer cake looks fabulous. You are the star.

        8. Looks great Clare. I'll Have to get the chef's hat out and try to produce something half that standard.

        9. Hey Spoonman! you so should! Let me know how it goes :-)