A recent weekday afternoon there, I sat through Leon Family & Friends cover to cover. It was tempting to bring the book home with me but I am already having a hard time keeping up with those on my shelves. The book is beautifully decorated with old photos, styled shots of appealing ideas for the home kitchen, and hand-drawn illustrations. Nearly every recipe from the eclectic collection has a story behind it. I also love that it is designed in a typically retro colour scheme. However, one needs to exercise restrain now and then so the book may have to wait.
Adapted from Leon Family & Friends by Kat Plunkett-Hogge & John Vincent
115 g butter, softened
170 g caster sugar
2 eggs, at room temperature
170 g self-raising flour, sifted
1 teaspoon baking powder
4 tablespoons milk
Zest of one lemon, grated
80 g icing sugar
Juice of one lemon
Grease and flour a 10 by 20-cm loaf pan. Preheat the oven at 180°C.
Using a stand mixer, cream the butter and sugar. Add the eggs one at a time, followed by the self-raising flour, in two stages, and lastly the baking powder, milk and lemon zest.
Transfer the batter to the loaf pan and bake in the oven for 50 minutes. If the top of the cake starts to brown too quickly, bordering on looking burned, fold an aluminium foil tent to sit loosely on the pan.
Remove the cake from the pan to rest for 10 minutes. Turn it out of the pan onto a platter and prick the top surface with a toothpick.
Using a small whisk, dissolve the icing sugar in lemon juice, and pour the mixture over the top of the cake. To serve, dust some icing sugar on top before slicing.