Food with JP Passion – Delicious zesty drizzle cake

Food with JP Passion – Delicious zesty drizzle cake

By John Paul Kennedy

This evokes the warmest of memories of being gathered around my dining room table enjoying a delicious slice of cake with a cup of tea chatting endlessly to my Mother.

This was one of her favourite cakes as she drank copious amounts of tea.


Like her I love all citrus based cakes and desserts and this cake is one I return to over and over again.

This is one of those staple baking recipes you need to master and one that’s extremely adaptable as it can be baked as a loaf cake, round cake or a tray bake.

I like to serve as a round cake as it’s easier to portion and everyone gets a nice big slice of cake. Whatever tin you decide on; this cake will go a long way so it’s perfect for entertaining lots of people and it will last in an airtight container for up to 4-5 days in the fridge.

I find it tastes best on day two when all of the lemon flavour has had time to mature and infuse the cake!


(Makes 1 cake which serves 8-10 people)

225g unsalted butter

22g castor sugar

275g self raising flour

3 large eggs – room temperature

2 teaspoons of baking powder

2 tablespoons of milk

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Zest of two lemons

Juice of one lemon


175g icing sugar

Juice of 1-2 lemons (to make a smooth paste)



1. Preheat your oven to 180 degrees and lightly grease a round 20cm baking tin and line the base with baking parchment paper

2. In a large mixing bowl cream the butter and sugar together until light, fluffy and pale yellow in colour – As always I use my mixer to speed up the mixing process

3. Add the eggs one at a time and mix until well combined then add in the milk and vanilla extract

4. Carefully fold into the dry ingredients (flour & baking powder) followed by the lemon zest

5. Transfer to your cake tin and spread evenly and lightly tap the tin before placing into the preheated oven

6. Bake for 35 – 40 minutes until your cake is fully cooked. Test by inserting a metal skewer in the middle of the cake and once it comes out clean it’s baked. While the cake is still hot and in the tin prick the top with a toothpick and pour over the juice of one lemon and leave to cool completely before removing from the tin

7. To make the drizzle, mix the lemon juice a little at a time into the icing sugar until you have a nice smooth paste of pouring consistency. Smooth the icing over the top of the cake allowing some of it to drizzle down the sides for the lemon drizzle effect. Decorate with lemon zest serve and enjoy!

This is one of my favourite cakes to bake and eat! It’s light, fluffy, zesty, zingy and sweet, all words that for me evoke feeling of pure food heaven! It’s a real good old fashioned home baking recipe and one I guarantee that once you perfect it you will come back to time and time again. While this was my mothers favourite cake, all of my family and work colleagues adore this recipe. I hope all of yours do too!

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