Well to herald the first day of Autumn, I came home from work today and did some baking (yay to the cooler weather!) It took a bit of rummaging around, browsing through cookbooks, tramping up and down the stairs and finally finding a recipe that I had all the ingredients for. The tramping up and down the stairs was because I was grabbing different cookbooks from my room, thinking I had everything but didn't and then going back up the stairs to look for another one. My mum was quite amused and when I finally found the one recipe that I really wanted to cook, I nearly started kicking and screaming upon the discovery that there was no milk in the fridge. There's always milk in the fridge! In the end, my mum saved the day by reminding me about the long life milk we had in the cupboard which would make a good substitute. Admittedly, I'm a bit hopeless without mum around.
Start by greasing and lining a loaf tin with baking paper.
In a mixing bowl, cream 125g softened butter, add 1 cup caster sugar and beat. Add 2 eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add 1 cup sifted self raising flour, 1/2 cup sifted plain flour, 1/2 tsp salt and 1/2 cup long life milk. Fold to combine.
Chop up 1/4 cup hazelnuts.
Fold into the batter the chopped hazelnuts and grated rind of 1 large lemon.
Pour mixture into the tin and bake for 55 minutes, or until a skewer comes out clean when inserted.
In the last 5 minutes of baking, combine juice of 1 large lemon (same lemon you get the rind from) and 1/4 cup caster sugar in a saucepan and stir over low heat until the sugar is dissolved.
Pour the lemon syrup over the cake while still hot from the oven. Cake can be left to cool in the tin.
This is probably the first loaf that I've baked where I haven't had to cover the tin midway to prevent it from browning too much. The loaf cooked nicely in the 55 minutes and well, of course I had a bit whilst it was still warm; the texture of it is moist and packed with the flavour of the lemon syrup and hazelnuts. The sugar syrup which drizzles through the pockets in the loaf seem to leave the hazelnuts with a slightly sticky and crunchy like texture (almost like shards of toffee). I only had a small piece but I'm looking forward to cutting a slice of this in the morning.
Recipe is from Frankie Magazine's 'Afternoon Tea', a collection of afternoon treats in a gorgeously designed volume. All the recipes are every so easy to make, no fuss, just pure sweet goodness!