The Amalfi coast is blessed with an abundance of citrus fruits, and these little cakes erupt like the nearby Mount Vesuvius, oozing a zingy hot lemon curd – they’re desserts with attitude.
For the lemon curd – for step-by-step instructions, watch my YouTube video here
Juice of 3 lemons (about 110ml/3¾fl oz)
200g (7oz) caster sugar
A pinch of sea salt
50g (1¾oz) cold unsalted butter, cubed
For the sponge
100g (3½oz) soft unsalted butter, plus extra to grease the ramekins
80g (3oz) caster sugar, plus 1tbsp to dust the ramekins
2 tbsp whole milk
Zest of 3 unwaxed lemons
100g (3½oz) plain flour
You will need 6 x 120ml (4fl oz) ramekins.
Place all the ingredients for the lemon curd, apart from the butter, in a medium saucepan on a gentle heat and whisk continuously for 5-8 minutes, or until the mixture thickens. Whisk in the butter, cube by cube.
Take off the heat once all the butter has melted. Pour into a wide bowl and cool for 20-30 minutes, or until it reaches room temperature. Pour into a disposable piping bag or a heavy-duty food bag, and refrigerate until using.
Preheat the oven to 200°C/fan 180°C/ gas 6. Butter the ramekins and dust with sugar. In a bowl, beat the butter and sugar until fluffy. Lightly beat the eggs and gradually add them to the mix, beating all the time, then add the milk and zest.
Sift the flour into the mix and incorporate well. Divide the batter between the ramekins until just over half full. Take the piping or food bag, snip off a corner, insert the tip into the centre of the batter in each ramekin and pipe in the curd until two-thirds full.
Place on a baking tray and bake for 15-20 minutes, or until the tops are golden and spring back when touched. Immediately run a knife around the edges of the cakes before turning them out onto plates. Serve straightaway.
Make sure you don’t let the curd boil, as this will make it split and give it an eggy taste. The leftover lemon curd is delicious swirled into yoghurt.
If you liked this recipe, then head over to my new project Khoollect and try making these lemon cheesecake bites.