Lemon Poppyseed Syrup Cake


If I could describe a lemon in one word, I would describe it as ‘happy’. Why ‘happy’ you may ask? I don’t know why, but their bright yellow skin and citrus-y smell just conjure up memories of fun times like running around in the backyard with friends and drinking homemade lemonade in summer to cool down.



I love to use lemons whenever I can in the kitchen. When the lemon trees in the backyard are bursting with fruit, it’s hard to decide what to do with them! Lemons make great curd, give buttermilk pancakes an extra zing and you just can’t beat a dreamy creamy lemon cheesecake. Lemon meringue pie, lemon tart, lemon slice, lemon delicious pudding, the list goes on and on…

One of my favourite lemon recipes is a lemon poppyseed cake drenched in a lemon syrup. This particular recipe is similar to a madeira cake, rather moist and cakey.

Lemon Poppyseed Syrup Cake

(adapted from a recipe by Nigella Lawson in ‘How to be a Domestic Goddess‘)

250g unsalted butter, softened

225g caster sugar

3 large eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

3 lemons, zested and juiced

2 tablespoons poppyseeds

200g self raising flour, sifted

100g plain flour, sifted


100g icing sugar

2 lemons, juiced

  1. Preheat oven to 150 °C. Grease and line a 13cm x 21cm loaf tin.
  2. In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar with a hand-held mixer for 2 to 3 minutes, or until light and fluffy.
  3. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add vanilla extract, lemon zest and poppy seeds (make sure you use your fingers to remove as much mixture as you can from the beaters – most of the lemon zest and poppyseeds like to hide here).
  4. Gently fold in both flours and lemon juice and mix until smooth.
  5. Spoon the mixture into the tin, spread the batter so it is nice and even and bake for around 45 minutes or until cooked when tested with a skewer.
  6. For the syrup, place the icing sugar and lemon juice into a small pan and bring to the boil. As soon as the cake is cooked, remove from the oven and pour the syrup all over the cake, allowing the syrupy goodness to soak and work it’s magic.
  7. Once the cake is cold, remove from the tin, slice up and serve. If you try to remove the cake while it is still hot, or you haven’t allowed sufficient syrup soaking time, the cake will fall apart when you cut.

This cake is fabulous with a cup of tea :)


5 Responses to “Lemon Poppyseed Syrup Cake”

  1. 1 diyosa

    your blog is dangerous. i LOVE anything lemon and i can’t decide which I want the Lemon Tart, Lemon Slice or This.

    i should have non of the above because i really should stop eating sweets. but OMG.. looks so good

    • 2 Linda

      Lol, D! Lemon anything is my favourite too. I’m yet to include lemon sorbet, lemon biscuits, lemon cupcakes and lemonade on this blog!

      I reckon you should make it all :)

  2. 3 Syin

    I made this! It was incredibly moist and quite yummy. Very easy and hassle-free to make as well. Thank you for this recipe!

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