"Lemon and blueberries are a match made in heaven - sweet and tart, fresh and fragrant, and, above all, altogether delicious. This perfect culinary wedding shines in this gloriously summery cake that’s pretty enough for a celebration but tremendously easy to make."
The sponge is simplicity itself and using the reverse creaming method (mixing butter in with the flour first) creates an incredibly soft, moist and buttery cake that is completely foolproof. You can use store-bought lemon curd if you like but it easy to make at home all the tastier for it.
Put the lemon zest, lemon juice, sugar and butter in a heatproof bowl. Set the bowl over a small saucepan of barely simmering water, making sure the bowl is not touching the water. Stir until the butter has melted.
Crack the eggs in a bowl and lightly beat together with a hand whisk.
Add a couple of tablespoons of the lemon/butter mixture to the eggs and whisk together. Gradually add the remaining lemon mixture then return the bowl to sit over the saucepan.
Cook, whisking continuously, for 5-10 minutes until thick enough to coat the back of a wooden spoon (it will thicken even more when cooled).
Cool slightly, then transfer to a sterilised jar. Keep in the fridge for up to two weeks.
Makes 2 x 23cm or 3 x 20 layers
Preheat the oven to 180C. Grease your cake tins, dust them with flour then tip out any excess.
Mix the milk with 15ml lemon juice and set it aside. The lemon juice will curdle the milk – this is what we are after!
Put all the dry ingredients (flour, sugar, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda & salt) in the bowl of your stand mixer. Mix together using the paddle attachment on low speed.
Add the cubed butter and mix on medium-low speed until the mixture resembles coarse sand.
Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing well with each addition. Stop the mixer and scrape the bottom and sides of the bowl to make sure batter is evenly mixed.
Add the soured milk, lemon zest and extract to the mixing bowl. Mix on low then high speed for a few minutes.
Scrape the bottom and sides of the bowl to make sure the batter is completely smooth and gently fold in the blueberries.
Divide the batter between the cake tins. Tap on the counter a couple of times to level.
Bake for 25-30 minutes.The cakes are ready when springy to the touch and a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean.
Cool on a wire rack and then gently tap the cakes out of the tins.
Whip the double cream until you have firm peaks. Transfer the cream into a piping bag fitted with a large star tip.
Spread a generous layer of lemon curd over the bottom cake.
Pipe a ring of whipped cream all along the outer edge of the bottom layer and a large dot in the centre.
Fill the space between the whipped cream with blueberries and top with the second cake layer.
Spread some lemon curd on top of the cake and pipe whipped cream along the outside edge.
Carefully pile blueberries over the lemon curd and top with some fresh lemon zest.