Frau Kuchen

cooking and eating in Berlin (and elsewhere)

Lemon Verbena cake

with 6 comments

Some time ago I posted a link to some Verbena recipes I’d bookmarked in Delicious. A friend of mine had a glut she needed to use up so I nosed around the internet adding recipes that looked worth trying.

My own verbena is now growing like wildfire along with the rest of my balcony plants, so I asked which of the recipes she had used.  The Lemon Verbena Bread came back as a clear favourite.

Image 1: Verbena                          Image 2: Cherry Tomatoes       Image 3: Peppers

I have to say I agree, it’s a lovely light sponge with a light lemony taste, although I’ve no idea why it’s called a bread – there’s no yeast and nothing bread like about it.  The first time round I made it without nuts; the second time I threw in a couple of handfuls of nibbed almonds. I couldn’t tell you which I preferred, both were good – the first went down stormingly well at a house warming party.

The recipe is unclear on a couple of points:

  • I recommend warming the glaze ingredients slightly to dissolve the sugar
  • A large loaf tin is a 2lb tin (or 1 kilo), small is 1lb (or 500g) and mini are 8oz (or 250g)

Image 4: Adding the syrup

This isn’t a cake Hudson’s will be able to sell – I can’t grow enough Verbena – but I do urge you to try it out at home. And if you don’t have Verbena it’s a good adaptable sponge recipe.

Written by hudsons

August 30, 2009 at 2:10 pm

6 Responses

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  1. Oh, brilliant! I’ve got a lemon verbena plant on my windowsill and the leaves are just beginning to droop. This bread will be my project for the weekend.

    Berlin Reified

    September 4, 2009 at 6:09 pm

  2. This looks really lovely, very moist and light. One small thing though, what you’ve got there is lemon balm not lemon verbena, which has pointier leaves and a more sherbet-y flavour.


    November 9, 2009 at 1:46 pm

  3. Never thought of using lemon verbena in a cake – what a fab idea. Making tisane from ours is as creative as I have got.


    November 12, 2009 at 9:19 am

  4. Having taken a closer look at your photo of verbena, it actually looks more like lemon balm?


    November 12, 2009 at 9:21 am

    • @lickedspoon & @Choclette – thanks for pointing out that it’s lemon-balm, not verbena. I definitely bought a pot that said “Verbena” on it!

      In Germany it seems to be known as Melisse…(not sure whether that’s Balm or Verbena).

      I’m sure the recipe will work equally well with either though – whether sherbety or lemony.


      November 14, 2009 at 5:03 pm

  5. Yes, Melisse is definitely lemon balm. Still, I wouldn’t have thought of using either this way, so now I can try both.


    November 14, 2009 at 8:01 pm

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