It’s been a bit of a tough week here, Betsy has been very poorly with a chest infection* and the homebuyers survey on the house we’re hoping to move into very soon came back with some very worrying points. Sigh. At least we have a birthday to cheer us up.

Happy, birthday, Dave!

I made Dave these sweet little cakes to celebrate, and although they’re not the most attractive (I baked them in a rush while Betsy was napping and forgot to line the muffin pan, duh) they are very, very tasty indeed. I made two flavours; lemon drizzle and chocolate.

The cakes are based on the Hummingbird Bakery‘s vanilla cupcakes recipe and made around 12 cakes. It’s the easiest cake recipe in the world and practically fail-safe. You need:

  • 240g plain flour
  • 280g caster sugar
  • 80g unsalted butter
  • 240ml sour cream
  • 2 eggs
  • ½tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
  • 1 tablespoon poppy seeds
  • zest and juice of one lemon

Pre-heat your oven to 170°C/ Cream the sugar and butter in a stand mixer until lighter in colour. Sieve in the flour and baking powder and mix until just combined.


My mixture is a bit lumpy, can you see? That’s because my butter was still a bit hard from being in the fridge, make sure yours is super soft!

In a separate bowl or jug, mix together the eggs, sour cream and vanilla. Add this to the rest of the cake mixture and again, mix until just combined. Now, separate your mixture into two.

In one batch of mixture add the cocoa powder and if you have a bit of chocolate lying round, chop that up finely and add that to the batter too.

In the other batch, add the poppy seeds and lemon zest.


Pop the mixture into lined muffin moulds, or muffin cases if you like. Put into the oven for 20 – 25 minutes or until the cakes are golden brown on top. Pour around a teaspoon of lemon juice onto each lemon and poppyseed cake while they are still warm.

Wile the cakes are cooking, make some icing. I totally botched mine, but if you follow this, you’ll be fine. divide that into two and add a teaspoon of lemon juice and zest in one and a teaspoon of cocoa powder in the other. Spread them onto the cooled cakes. with the chocolate cakes, I drizzled a little melted chocolate and some popping candy on the top.



*I was going to write a whole post about this and how horrible it is to have a sick child, but it ended up being terribly mawkish so I scrapped it. Long story short: Betsy woke up Tuesday morning breathing like Zuul so we took her to A&E and the Doctor diagnosed a chest infection. She is much, much better now, thank goodness.

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