As if January wasn’t depressing enough, HWW and I are doing a Dryathlon this month. Apparently, by giving up alcohol for a month, we’ll ‘clear our heads, feel fitter and save money’.
Hmmm. I can honestly say that my head feels exactly the same, I don’t feel any fitter (replacing alcohol with chocolate didn’t really help) and, as the alcohol is ridiculously cheap here (a six pack of beer is cheaper than a litre of fresh apple juice), I don’t feel we’ve saved much money either. All we’ve done is make ourselves miserable. Sparkling Water Friday is definitely not as much fun as Prosecco Friday.
Today I made a pseudo-healthy cake to give us a treat, without piling on too many pounds. This Glazed Lemon Loaf contains lemon juice and is butter free, so you can almost convince yourself that it’s better for you than eating fresh fruit and vegetables. As long as you don’t eat the whole thing yourself in one go – obviously, not something I would ever do…
Glazed Lemon Loaf
- 190g cups plain flour
- 150g caster sugar
- 1 tsp. baking powder
- 1/2 tsp. bicarb of soda
- Finely shredded zest of 3 lemons
- Pinch of salt
- 2 eggs
- 60ml milk
- Juice of 3 lemons (about 60ml)
- 60ml cup oil
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
For the Glaze:
- 70g sugar
- Juice of 1 large lemon (about 20ml.)
Preheat oven to 175 C/350 F/Gas Mark 4. Line a loaf tin with baking paper
Mix the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, lemon zest and salt together in a large bowl. In another bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, oil and vanilla until blended. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Using a rubber spatula, mix until they are just combined, forming a thick, slightly lumpy batter. Pour the batter into the prepared pan.
Bake the cake until golden brown and it feels springy to the touch when pressed lightly in the middle, about 35 minutes. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and, using a skewer, make 8 uniformly spaced holes in the cake.
To make the glaze, combine the sugar and lemon juice in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over a medium heat. Continue to boil until the mixture is bubbling and frothy on the surface, about 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and immediately pour evenly over the surface of the hot cake.
Let the glazed cake cool completely in the pan on the rack. Turn upright onto a serving plate. I topped it with lemon icing at this point (lemon juice and icing sugar mixed together).
Eat compulsively until you can have a glass of wine again.