Gin and lemon cake

baking, cakes


My lemon trees here in phoenix are heavily laden with fruit, so what better excuse than make a lemon cake. My daughter who is currently living in New Zealand bought me a wonderful baking book by Kim Evan, Little and Friday- celebrations. I adapted the recipe by using yogurt in place of soured cream.

This will make a 22cm cake.

You will need:
250g unsalted butter
1 1/2 cups caster sugar
Zest 6 lemons
4 eggs beaten
2 cups cake flour, sifted
2tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 cups ground almonds
1 cup yogurt

Beat the butter and sugar, gradually add the beaten eggs, fold in the sifted flour, baking powder and salt, ground almonds and yogurt. Pour into prepared tin and bake at 160°C/325°F for around 1 hour 40 min checking for doneness.


Gin syrup: heat 1/4 cup sugar, 1/2 cup water, 1/2 cup lemon juice, until sugar dissolved, stir in 100ml gin.

Remove from oven and pour the gin syrup over the cake in the tin. Leave to cool and soak for at least 2 hours ( including an hour in the fridge)

Cover with cream cheese frosting: 125g butter, 500g full fat cream cheese, 1 cup icing sugar.

This is wonderfully textured, rich lemon cake which was given a five star rating by my tasters- can't wait to try more recipes from this lovely book.



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Welcome to my blog! After a L O N G break from blogging during which Instagram (vannilla)took over my life, I am returning in a more varied format. Yes, I will bake and have been a Thermomix users from the days before it was cult-like. I'll share the best but I will also include that other hobby in my life, photography from my small island and beyond. If you like what you see, I'd love to hear from you! Anne

23 thoughts on “Gin and lemon cake”

  1. Pingback: A special valentines cake | vannillarock

  2. Love this recipe, I am from NZ, Little and Friday just around the corner, but I had never tasted this one until I made it from your blog, too many lemons called for desperate measures. Took it to a friends place and left it there, will have to make the next one for the book club so I don’t devour it all myself. For those who don’t want the gin, the alcohol will burn off when you melt the sugar, just leaving the taste, however of course if you don’t drink then you may not have any gin to begin with. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you Pamela! So lovely to hear from you and jealous that you have little and Friday close to you. Gin and lemon cake for book club- now that sounds like spooling them.


  3. Pingback: A-Z challenge – the letter G | vannillarock

    • Hi candy! Do try it- it is firm family favourite and I made it in a large bundt pan at the weekend for a friend’s birthday. You can pretty it up with lavender flowers- nice contrast at this time of year. Kim Evans is a New Zealand author- a bit unusually her recipes are cups with butter in metric. That’s what I’ve used in my recipe.


  4. OMG, what a lovely blog you have here. Every photograph is attractive! I definitely want to follow! 😉
    Thanks for visiting my blog!


  5. Su Leslie says:

    My favourite cake from Little and Friday (my favourite cafe). Their salted caramel banana cake with walnut praline is also to die for!


    • Oh I didn’t know it was a cafe,too. Have now made lots of bakes from the book but this one is asked for again and again!


      • Su Leslie says:

        It’s a very cool little cafe. The reason it’s called Little and Friday is that Kim, the owner, started the business as a little venture that was only open on Fridays. It’s now grown, and there are a couple more cafes, plus Little and Friday food is served in a few more places. It’s been spectacularly successful because it’s so down to earth, and the food is fantastic. The original cafe has big old dining tables, mi-matched chairs, cutlery and crockery and a really homely feel. Sometimes it’s soooo busy you can hardly get in the door.


    • I make a LOT of lemon baked goods, and this cake is top for moistness. It’s the sugar syrup which makes it, so just leave out the gin or reduce amount and substitute water. Thanks for visiting!


  6. Are you serious. This looks insanely delicious. Omg I need to have some!!! It looks so fluffy and lemony!!!!!!!!


    • this is honestly the BEST lemon cake ever and believe me i have been making (and eating) lemon cakes for more years than i care to remember. the recipe is from a young NZ baker, and i only came across her book when i was down in NZ over christmas.the sugar gin syrup means it is super moist.


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