Lime, lemon thyme and blueberry cake

This is my take on lemon drizzle cake. The addition of polenta gives it a good texture.

The little bursts of blueberries provide sweetness against the sharpness of the lime, and lemon thyme brings the whole thing together. The shape of cake is up to you. I love a bundt tin — and they’ve become really popular since Bake Off — as it looks interesting and fun, but you can use a 2lb loaf tin instead.

Serves
10 people

Time
1 hour 30 minutes

FOR THE CAKE

  • 200g soft unsalted butter, plus extra for greasing
  • 200g golden caster sugar
  • 100g ground almonds
  • 100g fine polenta (fine cornmeal)
  • 75g plain flour, plus extra
  • 1½ tsp baking powder
  • 3 large egg
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 200g fresh or frozen blueberries
  • Zest of 2 limes
  • 3-4 sprigs of lemon thyme

FOR THE DRIZZLE AND GLAZE

  • Juice of 3 limes
  • 100g icing sugar, plus 1 tbsp extra
  • Zest of 1 lime
  • 2-4 sprigs of lemon thyme
  • 25g blueberries
  • 1 egg white, frothed
  • 25g white caster sugar

01 Heat the oven to 160C (180C non-fan). Thoroughly grease a round bundt tin — if you are using a loaf tin, you will need to line it with baking paper, too.

02 Put the butter and golden caster sugar into a large mixing bowl and cream together until pale and whipped.

03 Put the almonds, polenta, flour, baking powder and a pinch of salt in another bowl.

04 Lightly beat the eggs in a third bowl. Then alternately add the eggs and the flour and almond mix , a little at a time, to the creamed butter and sugar. Once mixed together, squeeze in the lime juice.

05 Toss the blueberries in a little flour to stop them from sinking in the mix, then fold the lime zest, lemon thyme and blueberries into the batter.

06 Spoon the mixture into the bundt or loaf tin and bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour. To check that the cake is cooked, insert a skewer — it should come out clean. Remove from the oven and set aside.

07 To make the drizzle and glaze, mix the lime juice and icing sugar until smooth but still runny. Poke holes into the still-warm cake using a skewer (try not to go all the way through the cake), then spoon over two-thirds of the drizzle, allowing it to seep into the holes. Allow to cool fully.

08 Turn the cake out of its tin — leave it upside down if using the bundt tin, but turn it up the right way if using the loaf tin.

09 Mix the additional icing sugar into the remaining glaze until you have a thick white icing. Drizzle this over the cake in stripes back and forth. Sprinkle over the lime zest, and the leaves from one of the sprigs of lemon thyme.

10 Lightly coat the other sprigs and blueberries in the frothy egg white and sprinkle with caster sugar to give a frosted effect, then place these across the top.

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