Almond and Apricot Cake (with Gluten Free Option)
Admittedly this is not the most attractive of cakes, it’s rather flat and tends to go at little ‘golden’ around its edge…but remember, looks can be deceiving! It is a beautifully moist cake, with a slightly chewy crust, the sweet flavour of the apricots is complemented by a lemony syrup which you pour over the cake when it is still warm. It is a recipe that I have taken from an old book, ‘The Gastro Pub Cookbook’. At the time it was published in 2003, the gastropubs from which it takes its recipes, were some of the best in the UK, although some of these pubs might not have survived the recipes are still as delicious. Interestingly, the book was researched by Diana Henry who these days is a very successful cookery book writer in her own right. Henry described this cake as ‘one of the most delicious cakes I have ever tasted’, and I’m not going to argue with her! It was a recipe which she took from ‘Ballymore Inn’ in Co.Kildare, Ireland, which in fact, is still a very successful gastropub – one which I have on my bucket list to visit…!
If you are gluten free, like me, this cake can be easily adapted by using gluten free flour (I used Doves) – the cake in the photo is gluten free!
225g butter, plus extra to grease the tin
100g dried, ready to eat apricots
225g caster sugar
1 lemon, juiced
80g ground almonds
3 large eggs, beaten
100g plain flour (gluten free if required – see note above)
For the Lemon Syrup:
1 tablespoon caster sugar
1 lemon, juiced
To serve: crème frâiche or whipped cream
- Butter a 23cm round cake tin and line the base.
- Roughly chop the apricots.
- In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Add the lemon juice, ground almonds and beaten eggs, then mix thoroughly. Finally, fold in the flour and apricots.
- Put the mixture into the prepared cake tin and bake in the oven, 180’c fan, for about 35 minutes until the cake is firm and golden and leaving the sides of the tin.
- Leave to cool in the tin for a few minutes then lift out onto a plate.
- To make the lemon syrup, gently heat the sugar and lemon juice in a small saucepan until the sugar has dissolved. Pour over the cake while it is still warm.
- Serve warm or cold with whipped cream or crème fraiche.