MY name is Nancy, and I am a baker.
BAKING is my happy place, and even if the bake itself is daunting, baking calms me down like nothing else. Perhaps it’s the science of it, who knows. Either way, baking is a regular occurrence in my apartment – an oven was an imperative purchase after I moved to Korea. I was fortunate enough to acquire a larger than average oven in the summer of 2016. It was bittersweet as this also meant that my friends were leaving (they have moved to Shanghai and I still need to get my jolly on and go and visit them!)
BEFORE this magical beast, I was working out of a wee oven about the size of a microwave – it did me proud did that little oven!
I like to experiment with all sorts of recipes and flavours, but there are two recipes that I always fall back on, one of which I’m going to share with you today!
WAY back in the day, the first year of secondary school, I was introduced to the basic cupcake ratio. I now call these 6:3 cupcakes. Where this came from I have no idea, but it works! I use this as the base of most of my baking. It makes a lovely cake batter that all sorts of things can be added too!
ADAPTING this to make it lemony is the easiest thing in the world. All you need is two lemons and 100g-110g icing sugar (here in Korea you can buy icing sugar in small packs of 100g-110g.)
A few things to note:
- You can use self raising flour and omit the baking powder. (I don’t have the luxury of Self Raising flour here!)
- For a bit of extra “weight” you can take out 1oz or so of flour and replace it with bread flour. I was forced to do this recently and it worked out like a charm!
- For sugar, I will usually use demerara sugar out of preference, but white or caster sugar works just fine!
As you can see, I was using this as an experiment with handmade cupcake cases! I may never look back from this day! It’s so pretty!
I hope you make this and enjoy it as much as I do – it’s easy, cupcakes can be baked in the smallest of ovens, even toaster ovens (you would not believe the things I have baked in a toaster oven – Hong Kong living!!)
BUT I digress, here is the recipe for these deliciously sweet and sharp cupcakes (or one cake if you so choose!) Happy Baking!
6 oz (170g) butter/margerine
6 oz (170g) sugar
6 oz (170g) flour
2 tsp baking powder
3½-4 oz (100g-110g) icing sugar
Optional: Earl Grey flavouring/powder.
- Preheat the oven to 180°C.
- Cream the butter and sugar together.
- Add the eggs. Beat well.
- Add the flour. Mix till all the flour is combined, but be sure not to overwork the batter!
- Grate the zest of the two lemons into the cake mix!
- At this point, if you fancy, throw in some Earl Grey flavour! I did this and it was every so subtle, but lovely.
- Either pour the mix into a greased and lined loaf tin or divide between 12 cupcake cases.
- Cook a cake for 30-40 minutes or till a skewer comes out clean. Cook the cupcakes for about 15 minutes. Depending on your oven, you may want to turn the cakes half way through baking.
- While the cakes are baking, make the icing/glaze by mixing the icing sugar with the juice from the two lemons.
- Pour or spoon the icing/glaze over the cakes as soon as they have come out of the oven and leave them to cool in the tins for a few minutes while the glaze seeps through the cakes.
- Transfer to a wire rack to cool.