Sunday, March 29

Necarine and lemon cake

This time of the year is great for a number of reasons... firstly the weather is cooling down and the days are gloriously sunny (mostly).  Secondly Easter is on it's way and there's time to slow down, have some time off and spend with the family.  Food-wise there's a the glut of the summer fruit available at good prices and the winter produce is starting to creep in and be more affordable.

I got 2 kilos of beautiful white necatarines this morning for $6 and although we'll enjoy eating them, I wanted to make a cake with them also.  This recipe came from epicurious but had cinnamon in it also... now it's never like me to omit cinnamon but today I did because these necarines were so delicious and I wanted them to be the star of the cake.

You can use plums or peaches, or even apple if you like but if you were going to use apples I would add the cinnamon, and it's just a teaspoon mixed with the sugar on top.

125g butter, at room temperature
3/4 cup caster sugar
2 eggs, at room temperature
Zest of 1 lemon
Juice of half a lemon
1 1/2 cups self raising flour
3-4 nectarines, cut into 8ths
Sugar for top of cake (about 3 tb)

Preheat oven to 175 degrees c
Grease a 9 inch springform pan generously with butter

In a mixing bowl, cream the butter and sugar until it's light and fluffy
Add egg one at a time then zest and lemon juice.  Mix well

Lastly add the self raising flour and mix for a minute until lovely and smooth.  At this point you want to eat it.  You're only human after all...

Spoon into your tin, I pile mine into the centre and smooth out to the edges.

Place your nectarines in any arrangement you like.  I've started from the edge in a circle and then the centre.

Sprinkle sugar evenly over the top.  Pop in the oven on the centre shelf of the oven and bake for 1 hour.

Test with a skewer and if it comes out clean, take out of the oven.  If it isn't clean, pop back in and check ever 5 minutes until it comes out clean.

Leave to cool for about 10 minutes before unlodging any sticky bits from the sides with a knife and then unlocking your springform to let the cake cool further.

Serve warm or cold - and enjoy!

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