Benjamina Ebuehi’s mint & lemon drizzle cake recipe

A classic lemon drizzle cake is pretty hard to beat. It’s got the perfect balance of sweet and sharp, and a soft, buttery crumb that gets drenched in lemony syrup. This version is all of those things but with some extra brightness and fragrance from a good handful of fresh mint. It’s such a simple twist but wins big on the flavour front.

Mint & lemon drizzle cake
Laura Edwards

SERVES 8-10

250g caster sugar
10g fresh mint leaves, plus extra to decorate
200g unsalted butter, plus extra for greasing
Finely grated zest of 2 lemons
3 eggs
270g plain flour
1 1⁄2 tsp baking powder
1⁄4 tsp salt
2 tbsp milk

FOR THE SYRUP
50g caster sugar
Juice of 2 lemons
3 fresh mint leaves

FOR THE FROSTING
70g icing sugar
2-3 tbsp lemon juice (from about 1 lemon)

  1. Preheat the oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4. Grease and line a 900g (2lb) loaf tin. Add the sugar and mint to a food processor and blitz until the mint is finely chopped.
  2. Cream the butter, minty sugar and lemon zest together with an electric whisk for 3-5 minutes until really pale and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Tip in the flour, baking powder and salt and mix on low speed until smooth. Finally, stir in the milk.
  3. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top. Bake for 50-60 minutes until golden and a skewer inserted at the middle of the cake comes out clean.
  4. Meanwhile, make the syrup. Heat the sugar, lemon juice and mint in a small saucepan until the sugar dissolves. Let it simmer for 1 minute before removing from the heat.
  5. When the cake is out of the oven, use a skewer or toothpick to prick the whole surface. Pour the syrup on top, letting it seep into the holes. Leave the cake to cool completely in the tin.
  6. Make the frosting by mixing the icing sugar and lemon juice together until you have a thick but pourable consistency. If it looks too thin, just add a little more icing sugar; if you want to thin it out, stir in a bit more lemon juice.
  7. Remove the cooled cake from the tin and pour the frosting on top, letting it drip down the sides. Top with a couple of small mint leaves before serving.

Buy the book

a good day to bake
Our recipes are from A Good Day to Bake: Simple Baking Recipes for Every Mood by Benjamina Ebuehi, published by Quadrille, price £22. To order a copy for £18.70 until 11 April, go to mailshop.co.uk/books. Free UK delivery on orders over £20.