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Bergamot lemon curd cake recipe

This recipe has been sitting around waiting for me to post it for a good while.

I think the bergamot season is sometime in March so, yep, it took a while getting around to it. *looks at the floor, prods carpet with toe guiltily* I'm not sure why I've been delaying posting it, as it's a simple recipe and handy for anyone eschewing gluten. Maybe I was afraid I'd be trolled by an errant crowd of angry bergamot-haters?

Anyway, let me take you back to those heady days of March. You remember them - the days were shorter, nights were longer, and bergamots hung heavy in every tree. Bergamot is best known for being the ingredient that gives Earl Grey tea its flavour but it's so much more than that: its scenty flavour makes me think of a lemon that's taken a long beach holiday to find itself and come back with flowers in its hair and a few dodgy tattoos.

I couldn't pass up any opportunity to grab a few fruits whenever I passed them by. I made liqueur out of the spare skins, and marmalade out of the fruits (I used this recipe as a starting point but with less water and less sugar).

I've made lemon biscuit bars before with bergamot too, and they were glorious, so I thought this time around I should put all that flavour to work in a cake. One of my favourite citrus cakes is a flourless version from Demuths, which uses soya yoghurt and almonds in place of flour, and this recipe owes a debt to that one, reborn as it is with a few tweaks for maximum bergamot.

Bergamot lemon curd loaf cake
Makes one loaf

Two bergamot lemons
100g caster sugar
175g cashew yoghurt
2tbsp olive oil
2tbsp maple syrup
30g coconut flour
50g fine cornmeal
1tsp baking powder
Pinch of salt

How you do it
Put the two bergamots in a pan of boiling water for an hour.
Drain, then once they're cool enough to handle, chop them roughly (skins and all), taking care to pull out and discard all the pips you find.
Blend the bergamot pulp with the cashew yoghurt, maple syrup, and olive oil until you have a smooth paste.
Stir in the almonds, flours, baking powder, salt, and sugar until incorporated.
Pour it into a greased loaf tin and cook at 170C for one hour.

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  1. I suspect there was a bit of study between march and now so you are forgiven :-) I am fascinated by bergomot - love the smell in earl grey but do not like tea enough to drink it so I would love to encounter the fruit - and taste your cake!

  2. I love bergamot but couldn't spot a fresh one if it hit me in the face! I'll have to investigate if they really are so prolific in UK autumn. I certainly love the sound of this.

  3. Lemon cake sounds perfectly lovely, but bergamot lemon? Now that's an exotic little slice of paradise right there. The texture looks so incredibly rich and soft, too!

  4. I've only come across bergamot oil in the UK, never seen it fresh or maybe i am not looking hard enough. I do like the smell and once had bergamot turkish delight which was not bad. I do love the sound of this cake and would very much love to try a slice.

  5. I had to google what's a bergamot. Even then, I'm still not sure if I've ever tried one. The loaf cake looks delicious, I wouldn't mind trying a couple slices of that. :-)

  6. I was looking longingly at the cake thinking how nice it would be to be able to try it when I spied the fact that it's gluten-free! Now, how do I find a bergamot? I wonder if meyer lemons and a few drops of bergamot oil would do.

  7. Very intriguing, but I think the almonds are missing from the ingredients list. Please let us know how many and what type.


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