Dr Weasel, my fine and upstanding husband, has an uncontrollable urge to bake about once a year. This year’s annual cake orgy has just taken place – he made several for a shared birthday party at work, where twenty ageing computer programmers played competitive Dance Dance Revolution in the office and ate cake at each other.
There were cupcakes, a couple of chocolate cakes, trays of brownies and this lemon raspberry confection. This particular cake was going to be a nice short semolina sponge, sliced across and glued together with jam and whipped cream. Unfortunately, it didn’t really rise enough in the middle to be sliced in two across the bottom successfully, but Dr Weasel, undaunted, raided the fridge and made one of the best quick cake toppings I’ve tried. He successfully disguised any sag in the middle, created something quite delicious, and ended up with something nearly as popular as my brownies. I am shocked. Has he been having lessons while I’ve not been looking?
This cake will work just as well if your semolina sponge rises better than Dr Weasel’s did (I think his egg whites were not whipped sufficiently – it still tasted brilliant, though). You’ll need:
4 oz (100 g) caster sugar
2 oz (50 g) fine semolina
½ oz (15 g) ground almonds
3 separated eggs
Juice and zest of a lemon
5 fl oz (150 ml) whipping cream
5 tablespoons lemon curd
Fresh raspberries to cover (about a punnet)
Preheat the oven to 180° C. Grease and line a round cake tin.
Whisk the egg yolks and sugar together with an electric whisk until they are pale and frothy. Add the lemon juice and keep whisking until the mixture thickens. Fold in the lemon zest, semolina and almonds.
Clean the blades of the whisk very carefully to remove any trace of egg yolk. In a different bowl, whisk the whites of the eggs until they form soft peaks. Fold the beaten whites into the semolina and yolks mixture, turn into your lined cake tin and bake for about 30 minutes until golden (and, hopefully, risen).
When cool enough to handle, turn the cake out onto a wire rack and cool completely. Meanwhile, whisk the cream until it is stiff, fold in the lemon curd and use a palate knife to spread the thick lemon cream over the top of the cake. Stud the surface with raspberries and serve in slices.