What ? Another post by me ? so soon after the last one ? Yep, I’m on a run at the moment & don’t want to lose momentum as we rush towards the busy months at work, usually from October through to December.
So before it’s Harvest wheat sheafs, ghosts & bats…then santas & reindeer & mince pies, I’ve one more burst of late summer to go, and this was inspired by walking past a big lavender bush in my front garden on my way to work. The lavender was covered in bees, ” Honey” I thought, then I could smell the lavender & thought how the bee was probably going off to dump its pollen in some sort of bee kitchen and rustle up some lavender honey, maybe watch a bit of telly first, read the paper maybe, but do whatever bees do with their mates in the hive to produce the golden loveliness ( Yes, I am up late writing this and getting delirious )
I had made a lemon drizzle cake earlier that week & thought I could come up with a similar sort of recipe, so came up with this.
I sort of thought the flavours seemed more suited to an almond based cake as they were lighter, a denser flour made cake like the lemon drizzle can take the strong lemon flavour. I quite like orange with honey, ( selfish ) & also even though lemon and honey go well, it sort reminds me of a cold and flu remedy, so couldn’t be doing with that.
I used some lavender from the very bush I walked past that morning, it was really aromatic, I think dried lavender flowers are much better than oils, I’ve used both, I don’t mind the oils for baking, but they can be overpowering sometimes.
So if you have a big bush ……….In your garden I mean, pick some of the flowers now and just leave to dry before storing in a jar or container, It’ll keep for ages !
If you don’t have a big bush, don’t despair… dried lavender flowers are readily available on-line at most bakery suppliers or cake decorating websites.
well here it is, have a bash your self, It can be served warm with Ice cream, or chilled with nothing at all ( though I couldn’t resist a big dollop of clotted cream one time )
Goes down a treat with a cup of earl grey ( get me all sophisticated like ).
Oh & thanks to the bee who gave me the idea, your cheques in the post.
YOU WILL NEED:
A small sauce pan for the syrup
A 9 or ten inch round cake tin.
Some pre-dried lavender flowers. ( about 5 heads for the recipe )
A mixing bowl and beater.
Oven pre-heated to 160c (155c for fan oven )
RECIPE: – base
500g unsalted butter
300g soft light brown sugar
4 heads of lavender
400g ground Almonds
100g fine rice flour
Zest & juice of 1 large orange.
1.5 teaspoons of baking powder
METHOD – base
Beat the butter sugar & together, add the eggs one at a time, continually beating.
Beat in the honey
Fold in the ground almonds & rice flour, baking powder and scrape the flowers of the lavender, fold into the mix with the zest.
Mix in the orange juice.
Place in the baking tin and bake for 35 minutes, until firm and a knife comes out clean when poked in the centre.
RECIPE: – Syrup.
200g caster sugar.
2 tablespoons honey.
Juice from one large orange, plus half the zest.
1 head of lavender.
METHOD: – Syrup
Dissolve the sugar and honey a small pan with the juice, add the zest and lavender, bring to the boil, then simmer for 2 minutes and take of the heat.
RECIPE: – Icing
110g icing sugar.
2 table-spoons of orange juice.
gradually add the juice to the sugar until a smooth runny icing is formed, If too runny add more sugar to thicken.
While the cake is still warm, prick all over with a skewer or small sharp knife, strain the syrup & spoon over the cake, covering the whole surface, right up to the edges.
( If using a loose bottom spring form tin, wrap the bottom in foil to prevent syrup leaking out. )
Next, with a spoon, drizzle over the icing.
click on any image below to enlarge.
© The cake-shaker. 2013