Mums are just pretty great, aren’t they? What you fail to realise as a child is that when you grow up, your parents become your friends. You realise that, actually, they aren’t as invincible as you once believed. They’re human, just like you. And that as an adult, your mind really just stays the same.
Mum has been there by my side through many an up and down. I think that while on some levels we do differ, we are very similar people at heart. And so she really gets me. She’s the ear to my endless waffle, and the one who won’t ever hesitate to tell me to get a grip and stop crying when I’m having a moment of insecurity – (never something you want to hear, but something you sometimes absolutely need to hear). I feel blessed to have such a strong bond with my mum. The five years I spent living and working in Dubai really strengthened our relationship, not only on a mother-daughter level, but also as friends. We’ve spent hours cooking up all sorts of concoctions in the kitchen, gossiping over buckets of coffee, trawling the city for delicious breakfast spots, and swooning over period drama hunks (Poldark, huh hum). And so it is with that, I would like to dedicate this Mother’s Day post to my beautiful Mama. We plan to go out for a delicious feast when she reaches these shores next month. But, Mama, perhaps you can make this cake yourself on Sunday and pretend it’s from me?!
I was recommended this recipe by a close friend of mine. It’s a firm favourite in her family, and she made for her mum’s birthday. I’ve mentioned my love of zesty bakes before, and this is no exception. The lavender and honey add a real depth to the flavour, while the polenta and ground almonds bring a unique texture. I also love that it’s not too sweet. It’s the perfect cake to bake your Mum for Mother’s Day.
The recipe is from a book called Love, Bake, Nourish by Amber Rose. You can buy yourself a copy here. I certainly plan on it!
2 tbsp dried lavender
100g golden caster sugar
225g unsalted butter, softened
225g ground almonds
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 large free-range eggs
Grated zest of 2 unwaxed lemons and juice of ½
½ teaspoon baking powder
pinch of salt
1/ Preheat the oven to 160°C.
2/ Grease a 20cm loose-bottomed cake tin.
3/ Finely chop the lavender and add to the sugar.
4/ In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter and sugar with an electric hand mixer until fluffy and pale in colour.
5/ Stir in the ground almonds and vanilla extract until combined.
6/ Beat in the eggs, one at a time.
7/ Fold in the lemon zest and juice, honey, polenta, baking powder and salt.
8/ Scrape into the prepared tin, level the surface with the back of a spoon or a palette knife and bake in the oven for 45 minutes or until the centre springs back to the touch.
This cake is great just on it’s own, or with a dusting of icing sugar, greek yoghurt, or even a dollop of crème fraîche. I also think that a handful of chopped pistachios folded into the mixture would go down an absolute treat!