Lemon, Thyme, Ricotta and Semolina Cake
A gorgeously herb-scented cake to enjoy with your coffee or tea. Make sure you grease the bundt cake really well, covering all edges and corners. I used a Heritage Bundtlette Pan tin for the smaller cakes - you will get about 18-20 mini cakes.
- 250 g | 8oz unsalted butter at room temperature plus a little more to grease the cake tin
- 250 g | 8oz caster sugar
- 250 g | 8oz smooth ricotta
- 150 g | 5.3oz fine semolina
- 150 g | 5.3oz plain all purpose flour, plus a little more to dust the cake tin
- 80 ml | 2.7oz lemon juice or you can use Limoncello
- 3 eggs
- 1 tbsp lemon thyme leaves very finely chopped
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
- zest of 2 lemons
- 4-5 Ricola original crushed into a fine powder to decorate
- fresh thyme sprigs to decorate
- For the herb syrup
- 100 g | 3.5oz sugar
- 100 ml | 3.5fl oz water
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- 2 sprigs lemon thyme
- 4 sage leaves
- For the glaze
- 200 g | 7oz icing sugar
- 1-2 tbsp lemon juice or milk
Preheat the oven to 180C | 350 F. Grease a 20cm (8in) bundt cake tin with a little butter, covering all corners and edges. Dust with a little flour and shake out any excess.
Beat the butter, sugar, thyme and lemon zest in a stand mixer (or use a hand mixer) until pale and fluffy. Stop the mixer and scrape the sides as needed.
Add the eggs, one at a time, and beat to combine.
Stir in the ricotta and lemon juice.
Sift in the flour, semolina, baking powder and bicarbonate of soda. Stir everything together until the batter is smooth.
Transfer the batter into the prepared bundt tin and level. Bake for 45 minutes, or until a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean. Leave the cake to cool on a wire rack before carefully turning out.
Put the sugar, water, lemon juice and herbs in a small saucepan and stir over low heat until the sugar is dissolved. Remove the herbs and brush the syrup liberally over the cake.
Mix the icing sugar with enough lemon juice or milk to create a thick but pourable glaze. Drizzle it over the cake. Sprinkle with the crushed Ricola and decorate with a couple of thyme sprigs. The cake keeps really well for a few days.