I'm Laura H and I'm very excited to introduce myself as DS's new resident cake-maker. (Hello!) I'll be picking up the Let Her Eat Cake column where the lovely Alex E left off, with a weekly offering of crumbly, spongy, jammy, creamy goodness.
Glamour + decadence + absinthe = the Belle Époque. Cake is definitely the missing link. Originally, I was planning this as a special for New Year, a ‘Let’s-Party-Like-it’s-1899’ Cake. That was until I discovered the l’amour en fuite, or love on the run cocktail.
It’s a blend of classic flavours: Lillet Blanc, (citrusy vermouth), absinthe and my personal favourite, St Germain elderflower liqueur. A forbidden love affair between cake and cocktail took place, and the Love on the Run Cake was born! Elderflower scented lemon sponge, elderflower cream and a wicked green fairy absinthe icing…
Love on the Run Cake
- 6oz (175g) unsalted butter
- 6oz (175g) caster sugar
- 6oz (175g) self-raising flour
- 3 eggs
- 1 tsp. baking powder
- 1 lemon (zest and ½ the juice)
- 2 tbsp. apricot jam
- 300ml whipping cream
- 1 tbsp. icing sugar
- Around 1 cup elderflower liqueur
- (You could also use elderflower cordial)
- 1 tub ready-made buttercream icing
- 1 tsp. green food colouring
- 1 tbsp. absinthe
- Preheat the oven to 170 C (Gas mark 3 / 325 F)
- Cream together the butter and sugar in a large bowl until light and fluffy.
- In a separate bowl, beat the eggs.
- Add to the butter mixture a little at a time, beating well to make sure it doesn’t curdle.
- Gently stir in the lemon zest and juice.
- Sift a quarter of the flour and baking powder into the bowl. Fold in gently and repeat until all the flour is used and the mixture has a dropping consistency.
- Grease and line the bottoms of two 7-inch sandwich tins and divide the batter equally between them.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes. Try to resist the temptation to open the door for a look. Make mental note to clean oven glass.
- The cakes are done when they are golden and spring back when poked with a finger.
- Turn out onto a wire rack. Whilst cooling drizzle each half with a tbsp. of elderflower liqueur.
For the filling:
- Whisk together the icing sugar and cream until stiff.
- Stir in the liqueur a teaspoon at a time until it’s elderflowery enough for you.
- Spread the undersides of the cakes with a thin layer of apricot jam.
- Repeat with half the cream and squidge together.
- Top with the remaining cream.
- Begin by cheating and open a tub of buttercream style icing and spooning half into a bowl (around 200g)
- Stir in the food colouring and absinthe and mix until combined.
- Decorate using a pallet knife, finger or piping bag.
- Just to be OTT, I went the whole hog and sprinkled mine with gold dust covered popping candy.