We just love our lemon tree. It’s producing more and more lemons each year, thriving and growing in leaps and bounds. It’s an absolute joy having fresh lemons when you need them, and we’re so fortunate that the tree yields such large and fleshy lemons. It’s time to make a lemon cake!

Not only does this mean we don’t have to buy marmalade, ever, but we also have enough lemons to make lemonade and lemon curd, to enjoy many a lovely cup of rooibos with honey, lemon and ginger in the coming winter months, and there are also quite a few lemons left over to freeze, both the juice and the rind, so that may continue to enjoy the lemons throughout the year.

The lemons are ready for the picking round about now. To celebrate the start of our “harvest season”, today I made us a lemon cake with chocolate icing. Yum! If you have fresh lemons at hand, and you’re in the mood for something sweet, then this is the perfect recipe for you. 


For the cake:

2 Cups Cake Flour

1 Tsp. Bicarbonate of Soda

9 Tbsp. Sunflower Oil

1 ¼ Cup Sugar

3 Beaten Eggs

1 Cup Buttermilk

Juice of 2 Lemons

Grated rind of 2 Lemons

Spray ‘N’ Cook

For the icing:

1 ½ Cups Icing Sugar

½ Cup Butter

A few drops Vanilla Essence

4 Tbsp. Cocoa Powder

Optional: 40 gr. Chocolate


Pre-heat the oven to 180 C°.

Using an electric mixer, beat the eggs, sugar and oil until light and fluffy. Add the buttermilk and all dry ingredients. Mix everything together until thoroughly combined, for about 1 minute. Finally, add the lemon juice and rind and give it a mix.    

Grease 2 x 20cm round cake tins or 2 x 20cm loaf tins using Spray ‘N’ Cook. Use a soup ladle to pour equal amounts of batter into each cake tin. Bake at 180 C° for 35 minutes. The cakes should be spongy to the touch. Immediately put the cakes onto a cooling rack and allow them to cool down completely.

In the meantime, prepare the icing. Combine all ingredients until a nice, creamy consistency is formed. Although not necessary, you can add about 40 gr. of melted chocolate into the icing for a richer, creamier taste.

You are ready to ice the cake once it’s completely cooled down. Use a fairly sharp bread knife to cut off the risen part of the one cake. This will ensure that you have a flat base on which to rest the second cake. Using a spatula, ice the bottom cake then place the second cake on top, and cover the whole cake with icing. You can serve the cake immediately.

This cake keeps well, unrefrigerated, for several days. Enjoy!

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