I have been hanging out to try this recipe as I love citrusy desserts that, along with a tonne of sugar, have a real bite to them. It sends my taste buds into a fabulous twist! So, with sweet yet sour limes on my mind, I woke bright and fresh on Saturday morning to whip up my first dessert of the weekend. Unfortunately for me, the recipe called for one of the things I hate doing most in the kitchen.
Exhibit A – Zesting. Seriously, one of the most deceivingly
difficult annoying tasks required in most citrusy desserts. Some limes (or lemons, oranges or whatever your citrus culprit is) just won’t zest. You must ensure that you spend quality time at the fruit and vego to find the lime with the perfect zestable skin. It’s got to be sufficiently rough or otherwise.. yup, you ain’t got no chance of zesting that sucker. Then, you have to actually perform the aforementioned task. It is annoying and tiring and I always managed to grate my finger. Luckily for me, I have a willing member of the household always happy to help (if not, a little blackmail never hurt… no zest, no cake kind of thing…) and in no time, Willy has efficiently zested my limes. Thanks Willy, always saving the day!
Limes form a large part of this cake (hence the name) with the zest being added to the cake mix and the syrup mix. This was going to be one limey sucker. To even out the mouth puckering liminess, Neil has cleverly added a heap load of sugar.
First things first, I got the oven fired up and greased and lined my cake tin. I then proceeded to get the rest of the required ingredients ready which included self-raising flour, LOTS of sugar, desiccated coconut, butter, milk, pair of eggs and, of course, limes.
Got my flour, sugar, coconut and lime zest into a bowl and mix, mix, mixed.
Then I proceeded to mix the absolute life out of the mixture to make it nice and smooth. Once said smoothness had been achieved, it was lovingly spooned into the cake tin and thrown into the oven for an hour. This allowed to me to then start on the lime syrup.
Into the lime syrup mixture went a HEAP of sugar, water, lime zest and lime juice.
The syrup mixture was simmered on the stove for about 10 minutes and was ready. Easy. Love it.
Once the cake was ready, I pulled it out of the oven, poked some holes in and poured the hot syrup over it while the cake was still, also, hot just as Neil advised in his book. Following which, was a very annoying waiting period whereby everyone in the house stared at the cake (as if this would make the 30 minutes go faster) until it was ready for its close up and, subsequently, ready for our mouthes.
This cake fed everyone I came into contact with on Saturday and the verdict? Unanimous. Glorious. Neil Perry’s Lime Syrup Cake is wonderfully moist thanks to the perfect consistency of the cake and just the right amount of syrup created by this recipe. The flavour has a perfect balance of sugar and zest which means it is not too sweet or sour and it gorgeous either eaten on its own or with a dollop of fresh cream. Willy, Harry the Handyman, Nan, Bobby, Phil and I have all given this cake the big thumbs up. So much so, that I decided to make it again today, Sunday, for the christening along with Neil Perry’s Strawberry and Mascarpone Cake…