A lemon cake fit for a Doctor

Earlier in the week, I received a super email surprise from the friendly pony – a request for a cake!

The pony’s colleague officially received a doctorate this week, so, OF COURSE, this meant a cake to celebrate.

We found out that her favourite cake was lemon drizzle, but the traditional loaf shaped drizzle cake just didn’t seem celebration-y enough for someone clever enough to be a doctor.

Instead, I decided on a plain lemon sponge, sandwiched with lemon curd (the same leftovers I mentioned in the Lemon Curd Cake post).

The only thing I couldn’t decide on was how to ice the cake. Drizzle would have probably been the best tasting, and obviously the most like an actual drizzle cake, but the friendly pony wanted a congratulatory message on top, which I didn’t think would have worked on a drizzle.

I considered making sugar paste or fondant icing, dying it bright yellow and having white icing, but as I couldn’t find a recipe that didn’t make enough to ice three wedding cakes, we settled on a lemon buttercream (a favourite of the pony who pretty much thinks the sicklier the better).

Once the cake was iced (using my new-found crumb coating technique and a brand new spatula!) we left it overnight, as I didn’t have any icing sugar left to make writing icing, and a trot to the shops wasn’t particularly appealing.

However, I couldn’t stop thinking that the cake didn’t quite look finished, so I leapt out of bed at 6.50 in the morning to start melting chocolate.

The finished cake, with dark chocolate writing, looked much better, and I was happy to send it away with the pony to work.

I didn’t try any of it myself, but I’ve been assured that it was enjoyed by everyone, although I think you probably do need to have a bit of a sweet tooth.

Congratulations Dr. Daniels!

Lemon Cake fit for a Doctor


  • 225g butter
  • 225g caster sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • Zest of 2 lemons, juice of 1
  • 225g self raising flour
  • 1tsp baking powder
For the filling and icing:
  • 3-4 tablespoons lemon curd
  • 125g butter
  • 250g icing sugar
  • zest and juice of 1 lemon
  • 50g dark chocolate (although this left me with quite a bit spare)
To make the sponge, cream the butter and sugar until fluffy, then gradually beat in the eggs and lemon zest and juice. Sift in the flour and baking powder and fold into the mixture until combined. Divide between 2 7″ cake tins and bake for 20-30 minutes at 180 degrees, or until golden brown.
To make the icing, beat the butter until soft, then slowly sift in the icing sugar and keep beating until well mixed and smooth. Add the zest and juice of the lemon, beat again, and add more sugar or milk to get the right consistency.
When the sponges have cooled, spread the lemon curd on top of one and stack the other on top. Spread a thin layer of the buttercream all over to crumb coat, then chill. Finish by spreading the rest of the icing all over, and pipe the melted chocolate on to do the writing.

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