Okay, so this is one of my favourites to make! It is so simple, and tastes SO delicious. Before I had attempted this, I wouldn’t go anywhere near lemon, I am such a fussy eater. Now, I can’t stay away from this little beauty! Making it in a loaf tin just makes it look so much more presentable; I opt for either this, or squares.
To start with, I’ll be doubling my ingredients to make 2 loaves. So I start by weighing 4 eggs, 225g, then I weigh out this amount for the butter, caster sugar and self raising flour. I need to ‘cream’ together the sugar and butter. When I take the butter out of the fridge, it is very hard, so I always pop it in the microwave. First I get the right amount (225g), cut in into cubes and put into a small bowl, I only microwave it for 5 seconds, I just want to soften the butter and not let it melt. The sugar is already in my mixing bowl, so I just add the butter, with the back on a wooden spoon I mix the butter into the sugar. You’ll see this in the picture.
Okay, so next I’m mixing the eggs. I’m doing this using a measuring jug, cracking each egg on the side of the jug, using the whole egg. With a fork I mix the four eggs together quite vigorously. Now I’m pouring the egg into the mixture, but only a bit at a time. I want it to mix properly and not let the mixture go too loose at the start.
In the mixture we have the sugar, butter and egg, now I’ll be adding the flour, it is best to use a sieve while putting it all together. Mine however has decided to go missing, so I have just put my fingers through it to make sure there are no lumps and bumps! I just put a little bit in at a time, so it gradually gets thicker. As I’m doing this I can still see some lumps, this is the butter. I always use a wooden spoon rather than an electric hand whisk, but sometimes it doesn’t go so smoothly. Once I’ve finished the whole process, I’m going to go over it with the whisk to get rid of the last bumps! You can see here just how thick the mix is now, getting quite tough to stir, especially with my weak joints!! Don’t worry; we’ve still got the lemon juice to add!
It’s time for the lemon! I took far too many photos for this bit! So I have a lemon squeeze, easier, no sticky fingers, and so cheap! You can pick them up from anywhere! We just want the juice, no pulp and the squeeze helps to separate. First off I’m grating the lemon into the mix, if you can, get yourself a grate, please don’t use a cheese grater!! It is so hard to clean afterwards! I’m grating a whole lemon into it, remember I’ve doubled the ingredients, and I have a large lemon. Once this is done, mix it, and then we’ll start to squeeze. Cut the lemon in half and begin to twist! Then the next half, there will be a lot of juice because I’m using the whole lemon. My squeeze has a spout so I can just pour it straight in, as you can see there is quite a lot of juice going in, and it makes the mixture very loose.
Okay, so the mixture is done, I now need to divide it into my two loaf tins, lined with cases, when you’ve done this flatten the top of each loaf evenly, a palette knife is best to use; if you don’t have one a butter knife or the back of a dessert spoon will do fine. I really need to invest in a pallet knife! Once this is done, it goes straight into the oven, on 180 degrees C for approx 20 mins depending on the oven. I’ve put mine on the bottom shelf, just so they don’t go too brown on the top! While it’s in the oven I clean up then start sorting out the drizzle. This is usually done with caster sugar; to give it a crunchy texture on the outside. Today I’m just using the lemon juice, giving it a soft texture both inside and out. So I cut the second lemon in half, twist and squeeze to let all the juice out, we’re going to put the juice over the loaf as soon as it comes out of the oven so it can soak right to the bottom. As it comes out, prick the top with a fork or skewer, giving lots of gaps for the drizzle to sink in. Now the end product, as you can see the glistening of the drizzle on top, it will look a lot better if and when you finish it off with caster sugar. Enjoy!
I just want to talk about the ingredients that I use, first off the eggs, which are becoming more and more expensive every time I buy them!! There is a brand called Ella Valentine, they are baking eggs. I always prefer these; they tend to mix so much easier. Even better that they are cheaper than standard medium eggs, although these are large and still free range! I picked these ones up from Sainsbury’s, there’s a photo below, on the inside of the box they have a recipe; there are more on the website for you to look at too! I change the butter I use quite regularly; the standard price is around £0.80-1.50. I found a bakers butter in Morrison’s for a whopping 55 pence each! This is a 250g block, so I definitely bought it in bulk! When it comes to self-raising flour, I’m easy; I don’t see a difference in quality or price between the supermarkets!