The first time I tasted this cake was in Geneva, it was baked by my friend Jane. It's now a firm family favourite. The sharp tang of lemons and the distinctive taste of the almonds signals the start of summer for me. I don't have a nice photo of one of the many I have made, hence the random photo of Versoix and Lake Leman.
Lemon And Almond Damp Cake - From Nigella Lawsons book; How to be a Domestic Goddess
225 g soft unsalted butter
225 g castor sugar
4 large eggs
50 g plain flour
225 g ground almonds
1/2 teaspoon almond essence
zest and juice from 2 lemons
Butter and line a 21 cm springform cake tin. Preheat the oven to 180C. Cream together the butter and sugar until almost white. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, adding a quarter of the flour after each addition. When all the eggs and flour have been incorporated, gently stir in the ground almonds, then the almond essence, lemon zest and juice.
Pour the mixture into the cake tin and bake for about 1 hour. Cover with foil after about 30 minutes, once the top is lightly browned. The cake is ready when the top is firm, and a skewer, inserted, comes out cleanish - you want dampness, but not gooey batter. Take the cake out and let it stand for 5 minutes or so in the tin. Then turn it out on a wire rack and leave till cool.
The cake lasts well, and even improves, over two days, if wrapped well in foil. Sift icing sugar over the top when serving. It is a very plain looking cake but if you take on board my favourite Nigella serving suggestion, ' I can't help myself murmuring raspberries', it looks positively glamourous.