Spiced nectarine cake

photo 1Turkish nectarines are both enormous, oozingly soft and deliciously tart at this time of year. I bought too many the other day, so decided to try something new. With a deliciously light, soft sponge, layered with golden, glistening fruit, this is a perfect summer cake. It’s so good, it may even make the cut for our wedding.

Makes enough for 8

What you need

½ cup butter, at room temperature

¾ cup granulated sugar

2 large eggs

1 tbsp lemon juice

1 ½ tsp lemon zest

1 ¼ cups self-raising flour

2-3 large nectarines, pitted and sliced

1 dessert spoon preserving sugar

1 tsp powdered cinnamon

photo 2

How to make it

  1. Preheat the oven to 160˚C, then grease and line an 8-inch springform cake tin.
  2. Place the butter and sugar in a deep mixing bowl, and beat until soft, light and fluffy. It’ll be quicker and easier to do this with an electric beater or in a food processor, but a fork will work just as well.
  3. Add the eggs one by one, beating until well combined between each addition.
  4. Add the juice and zest and all the flour, then beat the mixture until completely smooth.
  5. Pour batter into the cake tin and smooth out with the back of a spatula.
  6. Lay the nectarine slices on top of the batter. I find concentric circles mean you can fit as much fruit as possible into the cake, but arrange however you like.
  7. Finally, combine the persevering sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl, then sprinkle over the fruit.
  8. Bake for around 50-60 minutes, depending on your oven. The cake is ready when a tooth pick inserted into the middle comes out clean.
  9. Leave to cool for 10 minutes, then carefully remove the cake from the tin and leave to cool completely on a cooling rack.