• Has it o-curd to you that when life hands you lemons, you can shake and bake it into this delicious lemon-poppyseed cake with cream cheese and lemon curd icing?

    Recipe and styling by Claire Ferrandi and Nomvuselelo Mncube

    Photograph by Dylan Swart

    Lemon-poppyseed cake with cream cheese and lemon curd icing

    Serves: 8
    Cooking Time: 1 hr 30 mins + 2 hrs, to cool


    • CAKE

    • 225g castor sugar
    • 110g butter, softened
    • 2 eggs
    • 200g cake flour
    • 45ml (3 tbsp) poppyseeds
    • zest of 2 lemons
    • 5ml (1 tsp) baking powder
    • pinch salt
    • 125ml (. cup) milk

    • 40g sugar
    • 80ml (⅓ cup) lemon juice
    • 30ml (2 tbsp) water
    • ICING

    • 1 x 230g tub cream cheese, at room temperature
    • 50g lemon curd
    • lemon wedges, to decorate



    For the cake, preheat the oven to 180˚C. Grease and line the base and sides of a 20cm-diameter cake tin.


    Cream the castor sugar and butter together in a large bowl, using an electric mixer, until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition.


    In a separate bowl, whisk together the cake flour, poppyseeds, lemon zest, baking powder and salt to remove any lumps and to combine the dry ingredients.


    Using a spatula, fold the dry ingredients into the egg-butter mixture, alternating with tablespoonfuls of the milk, until all of the ingredients are incorporated. Pour the batter into the prepared tin and bake in the preheated oven, 40 – 50 minutes, until a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean.


    While the cake is baking, make the lemon syrup by placing all of the ingredients in a small pot and boiling to dissolve the sugar, 1 minute, then remove from heat. As soon as you remove the cake from the oven, prick it all over with a skewer and pour the hot syrup over it while still in the tin (simply heat up the syrup again if it has cooled down). Allow the cake to cool down completely in the tin, about 2 hours.


    Make the icing by combining the cream cheese and the lemon curd until smooth. Turn the cooled cake out onto a platter or cake stand, spread the icing over the top and decorate with lemon wedges.


    Imka Webb

    Imka Webb is a freelance digital marketing expert and the digital editor of Food & Home Entertaining magazine.  www.imkawebb.com