Frau Kuchen

cooking and eating in Berlin (and elsewhere)

Posts Tagged ‘lemon verbena

Lemon Verbena cake

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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

Rose syrup

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I’ve been planning to try out a cake with a rose syrup for sometime, and I thought I had the perfect sponge recipe to try it with. An almond and yoghurt based sponge, which seemed to have the middle eastern connotations that matched the rose water I planned to use.

Unfortunatley, despite it looking beautiful, the sponge was just too heavy.  I’ll try it again with a lighter one – probably the one I base the Hudson’s Lemon Drizzle Cake on, as I know it works really well.

The syrup was a great success though, so I  thought I’d include the recipe here.  Last night I tried a splash of it topped up with sparking water and ice; I loved it, but my parter, who tells me “rose isn’t a flavour, it’s a flower” isn’t so keen!

The syrup was made up a as I went along, so the quantities here are rough.

Ingredients

150ml water
175g sugar
juice of 1 lemon
8 cardamom pods
1 tsp rose water
dried rose petals
sprig of lemon verbena leaves (or you could use lemon zest)

Crush the cardamom pods in a pestle and mortar and place them in a pan with the sugar and water.  Heat gently until the sugar is dissolved, stir occasionally to help it along. Add the verbena leaves and the rose petals and leave on a low heat (no bubbles) for 5 minutes for the flavours to infuse. Take off the heat and leave to cool for 5 minutes.  Strain to remove the cardamom, petals and leaves (I use a paper coffee filter in a funnel for this). Add the lemon juice and rose water to taste – I was aiming for something that reminded me of turkish delight.

Store in a jar or glass bottle in the fridge, sterilise the bottle if you want to keep it for some time.

Use to flavour drinks, drizzle over ice cream, moisten cakes, etc.

I made holes in the two sponges with a skewer and drizzled the syrup over. I then sandwiched them together with turkish rose jam.  It’s topped with a simple lemon icing (sieved icing sugar + lemon juice), a sprinkling of rose petals and a couple of lemon verbena leaves.

Written by hudsons

July 3, 2009 at 6:19 pm