Following on from my last post about celebrating Litha, Midsummer, with growing, gathering and food, I thought this strawberry and mint loaf cake would fit the bill. If you’ve not tried strawberries and mint together before, I heartily recommend them – the mint really ramps up the strawberries’ fresh sweetness. In this cake the mint is infused in the milk for the batter and the icing topping, giving an aromatic twist to proceedings. To make it, you will need:
120g caster sugar
90g self-raising flour
30g ground almonds
120g strawberries, chopped
2 large, free-range eggs
2 tbsp mint-infused milk (infuse one sprig of mint in 4 tbsp milk by bringing it just to the boil with the mint and leaving it at least 15 minutes to infuse)
For the icing:
45g icing sugar
juice of one strawberry (mash it in a separate bowl and strain off the liquid)
1 tsp mint-infused milk.
Preheat the oven to 160C Fan. Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the mint-infused milk and beat again. Add the eggs one at a time with a little flour. Fold in the remaining flour and ground almonds. Fold through the strawberries until just incorporated.
Spoon evenly into a greased and lined loaf tin and level the surface. Bake for 40 – 45 minutes until golden brown and a skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean. Allow to cool a little in the tin, then turn out and leave to cool completely on a wire rack. Drizzle with the icing (made by mixing the icing sugar with one tsp of mint-infused milk and the juice of a mashed strawberry) and top with fresh strawberries and fresh mint to decorate.
What are you baking for Midsummer?