Saturday, May 19, 2018

Lemon and Elderflower Cake for the Royal Wedding

Today is the Royal Wedding of Prince Harry to Meghan Markle.  I am currently watching the ceremony as I type.  Meghan's dress is simple and beautiful, and she looked so pleased to see Harry at the altar.  Her mother looks so proud.  What a wonderful occasion. 

Unless you have been out of radio contact for a few months, you will know that London-based, Californian born pastry chef Claire Ptak has been chosen to make their wedding cake, which will be a lemon and elderflower cake decorated with fresh flowers (including peonies).

I made my own version of a lemon and elderflower cake to celebrate the Royal Wedding.  There are many variants of lemon and elderflower cake recipes, and Claire Ptak's is a secret, so I did some Internet searches to choose one that I liked.  The recipe for the base cake that I chose is this one.  It was a good choice, as the cake baked up in even layers that were sturdy enough to cut easily into layers and stack.

There appears to be an omission in that the recipe calls for lemon zest in the cake, but it is not mentioned in the method.  I ended up using the zest in the soaking syrup.  I also used lemon juice instead of lemon extract to flavour the cake.

Another change that I made was to brush some of the syrup onto the hot cakes while they were still in the tins, when the syrup is best absorbed.  I then used the rest of the syrup on the cake layers once the cakes were cooled and cut.

For the icing, I did not go with the recipe that is suggested with the cake.  Instead, I used my usual Primrose Bakery Buttercream recipe.  However, instead of flavouring it with vanilla extract, I flavoured half of it with lemon curd and lemon zest, which I used to fill the cake layers.  I flavoured the remainder of the buttercream with a tablespoon of St Germaine (elderflower liqueur), as used in the soaking syrup.

I did not have peonies, so for the purposes of the photographs, a placed a yellow gerbera and some white carnations on top of the cake, from a bouquet given to me by Tim.

I think this cake turned out very well aesthetically.  It is not a professional cake like Claire Ptak's will be, but then again, I am not a professional baker.  I loved how well this cake cut into slices - it was very easy to cut an attractive, sturdy slice.

Congratulations to Prince Harry and Meghan - I wish them all the very best for their lives together. 


2paw said...

Your cake looks delicious: yum, I love lemon and we have elderflower syrups and drinks here made locally.

Kari said...

I imagine the atmosphere in Windsor today is amazing - even in our bit of the country it's a nice day to be in England. Your cake commemorates the day beautifully and looks and sounds delicious.

Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella said...

I watched it and it was gorgeous. She has so much poise and I hope it works out really well for them. I didn't realise the baker was California born. She was the perfect choice!

Johanna GGG said...

I didn't know the sort of cake but I had looked at an article about the baker's other cakes so I guess I knew and forgot who she was - love your efforts to reproduce the cake for the occasion - we watched the wedding and it was really lovely but also nice that it was not totally traditional - Windsor palace was a gorgeous backdrop but I felt sad for Harry that his mum wasn't there.

Kayte said...

I watched the wedding from here as well...wouldn't miss it! So fun that you made a cake like theirs, you are always so creative. And I love the flowers Tim gave to you, so sweet when one gets flowers from a loved one. I wish I could have tried that cake! It looks both delicious and beautiful.