Glorious tennis time might be over for another year, but that doesn't mean summer drinks time is! There are still plenty of vague sporting excuses for drinking jugs of cocktails in the middle of the day. Like, errr, cricket? Now, how to wash down those large glasses of Pimms? What's that? With more Pimms? In a cake? Why the heck not.
If Pimms ain't your thing, we can offer a gin and tonic cake, or a limoncello cake; in fact, we've pretty much got the whole aperitif spectrum covered, in crumb form.
Preparation time: 30 minutes
Baking time: 45-50 minutes
You will need:
For the cake:
For the cake:
- 225g butter, softened
- 225g caster sugar
- 4 free-range eggs
- 225g self-raising flour
- Zest of 1 lemon, plus a generous squeeze of juice
- Zest of 1 orange
- Handful mint leaves, finely chopped
- 2 tbsp Pimms
- 50ml Pimms
- Juice of half an orange
- Generous squeeze lemon juice
- 2 inches cucumber, chopped
- 1 heaped tbsp icing sugar
- Icing sugar
- Chopped mint leaves
- Preheat the oven to 180C / 350F / Gas Mark 4. Grease and line a 900g / 2lb loaf tin.
- Cream together the butter and sugar until pale and very fluffy.
- Add in the eggs one at a time, along with a tablespoon of the flour to stop the mixture from splitting. Beat well in between.
- Sift in the rest of the flour and stir gently until just combined.
- Add in the lemon and orange zest, the squeeze of juice, the mint leaves and the Pimms and stir gently into the cake mixture.
- Tip into the loaf tin and smooth the over the top
- Bake for 45-50 minutes, until golden brown and a skewer or toothpick comes out clean. If the top is browning too fast, cover with foil until the centre catches up.
- Remove from the oven and leave in the tin to cool slightly.
- While the cake is cooking, make yourself a Pimms.
- Then, place all the ingredients for the syrup in a jug. Stir together well and add a little more sugar to your taste, if necessary.
- Tip into a small saucepan over a medium heat and warm gently for a few minutes, to allow the flavours to come together.
- While the cake is still warm, poke holes all over the top with a fork or a skewer.
- Spoon over the liquid of the syrup (not the cucumber) so that it soaks in. You might need to wait and do a second round. (You'll probably have syrup left over).
- Quickly dust with a generous helping of icing sugar.
- Decorate with a sprinkling of chopped mint, fresh sliced strawberries, and of course, a jug of Pimms...