Ever since I discovered Netflix on Xfinity I’ve been binge watching all sorts of great shows. Most of which happen to be period-type dramas like Downtown Abbey, The Crown and most recently Call The Midwife. One thing they have in common is that the English rely heavily on tea for just about everything. It’s part of English life, it’s a comfort thing. It’s not just a cup of flavored hot water, tea happens to make everything better.
I enjoy tea as much as the next gal but I regress to a robust cup of coffee. Having said that, I don’t think pastries or cakes taste nearly as good if not accompanied by tea. Such is the case with our featured recipe. Madeira cake is similar to a pound cake or yellow cake. It has a firm yet light texture and is eaten with tea or (occasionally) for breakfast and is traditionally flavoured with lemon. I adapted this easy Madeira Cake recipe from one of my all-time favorite cooks, Nigella Lawson. I just adore her! I love her accent, her imperfect way of creating succulent dishes and her upbeat personality. It took me some time to translate all the measuring but I finally got it so that it’s easy to understand. I made a couple of changes but the recipe pretty much remains the same. The cake recipe calls for castor sugar, which I’d never of heard of till now and of course didn’t have on hand. After researching I found how easy it is to make at home. The recipe for castor sugar was adapted from The Balance.
- 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 1/2 tsp baking powder
- dash of salt
- 1 cup unsalted butter softened at room temperature
- 1 cup castor sugar (super fine sugar - not powdered) recipe follows
- 3 large eggs room temperature
- zest and juice of 1 1/2 lemons
- Pam baking spray
- Preheat oven to 325F. Spray 8" round cake pan with baking spray. Set aside.
- Using a fine sieve, place flour, baking powder and salt into a bowl and whisk to blend. Set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer using the paddle attachment beat butter, sugar, and lemon zest on med-high until pale and fluffy. Add eggs one at a time along with one tablespoon of flour mixture for each egg. Fully incorporate after each addition.
- Gently fold in the remaining flour mixture and add lemon juice.
- Bake for approximately 1 hour or until a cake tester comes out clean. Cool in pan for 10 minutes then turn out onto wire rack to cool completely.
- Place granulated sugar in a food processor or spice blender. Pulse until it reaches a super-fine but not powdery consistency. Allow the sugar to settle for a few minutes. Use your sugar in place of the castor sugar called for in the recipe.
I swear this classic English cake is the easiest you can make! It’s the perfect afternoon snack with a wonderful cup of tea or for breakfast, like I do. Whatever time of day, a generous slice of this wonderful lemon confection is fabulous!
SHOP BLUE & WHITE FAVORITES