I don’t think I’ve ever read a novel that has so many references to cake. (Well, other than the one I’m writing.) Specifically lemon drizzle cake.
Lemon drizzle is a popular choice. Just this weekend I read on a tweet that it was JK Rowling’s favourite. It certainly is one of mine. And it is definitely very important to Martha and her friend, Elisabeth, in The Finding of Martha Lost by Caroline Wallace.
So, who is Martha Lost? Well, that’s a very good question. And one Martha intends to find the answer to. See, Martha has been lost since she was a little baby. Abandoned on a train to Liverpool she has been waiting in Liverpool Lime Street lost property office for sixteen years. And still, no-one has claimed her.
With the help of her friends: William, the man who lives underneath the station, George Harris, a commuter who wears a Roman soldier uniform, and Elisabeth, who runs the coffee bar next door where she serves delicious cream scones, cherry pie and, of course, a lot of lemon drizzle cake, Martha sets about finding who she is and where she came from.
This is such a magical story. Set against a backdrop of Liverpool, Lime Street railway station and The Beatles it is a story of one young woman’s quest to discover answers. Answers that will tell her how her story began.
The Finding of Martha Lost by Caroline Wallace is out today.
Recipe for Lemon Drizzle Cake inspired by The Finding of Martha Lost by Caroline Wallace
20cm/8 inch round cake tin or a loaf tin: greased and lined with baking parchment, juicer, grater, cocktail stick or skewer, jug.
For the cake
- 225g butter, softened
- 225g caster sugar
- 275g self raising flour
- 4 eggs
- Splash or two of milk
- Zest of two lemons
For the drizzle
- 125g sugar (granulated is best for a really crunchy topping)
- juice of two lemons
- Pre-heat oven to 140 degrees fan.
- Put all the ingredients for the cake into a bowl and mix with an electric mixer until well combined.
- Place into the prepared cake tin and bake for 1 hour – 1 hour 15.
- When baked, leave in the tin, and make small holes all over the surface using a cocktail stick or a skewer.
- For the drizzle: mix the sugar and lemon juice together in a jug.
- Whilst the cake is still warm pour the drizzle over the top. Do it slowly to allow the drizzle to soak in.
- Allow the cake to cool then remove from the tin.