Lemon & Raspberry Cake

It’s hard to imagine summertime without raspberries, one of the sweetest & most popular of all the berries (& for good reason too). In season right throughout summer from late June to early September, they’re a popular garden fruit because they’re just so easy to grow.


Raspberries aren’t too fussy, just keep them watered, with enough sunlight & well pruned at the end of the season. Just a few canes will reward you with plenty of juicy little berries. I’ve got two lots of raspberries growing in my own garden, one which I inherited with the house & another that I added myself & nothing quite beats nipping out in the early morning to pick a few fresh berries to go with your breakfast!


Whether you grow your own of take advantage of their cheap availability at this time of year though, if you can resist simply eating them straight away then why not make them into an extra special treat?


Normally, my raspberry glut will end up being boiled down into a delicious ruby jam, this year however I’ve taken it one step further & used both my jam & whole raspberries together to create an extra special, summery layer cake.


I’ve paired them with another summer favourite of mine (& regular reoffender around here), lemons! It’s nothing new or fancy, just two excellent flavours that pair together perfect, with the sharp, zesty lemon balancing out the sweet burst of raspberry.


Three layers of moist, lemon yogurt cake are sandwiched together with raspberry jam & smothered in a smooth, silky, lemon Swiss meringue buttercream. Topped with candied lemon slices & even more raspberries, this is real summer showstopper of cake but one that it far simpler to make than it actually looks (honestly).


(makes an 18cm layer cake)


For the cake:

  • 210g plain flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 200g caster sugar
  • 180ml yogurt
  • 3 large eggs
  • 110ml rapeseed oil
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
  • zest of x2 lemons

For the filling & Swiss meringue buttercream:

  • 100g egg whites (around 3 large eggs)
  • 200g caster sugar
  • 300g butter, cubed
  • Juice of 1 1/2 lemons
  • 160g raspberry jam

Optional – For the decoration:

  • 1 lemon, sliced thinly
  • 100ml water
  • 150g caster sugar
  • Small handful of raspberries
  • 1/2 tsp freeze dried raspberry powder
  • A few edible flowers
  • A few small leaves of mint


To make the cake:

  • In a large jug, combine the yogurt, eggs, oil & vanilla extract
  • In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking powder & lemon zest
  • Make a well in the centre of the dry ingredients & add in the wet yogurt mixture
  • Fold everything together until smooth & no pockets of dry flour remain
  • Divide the mixture evenly between 3 greased & lined 18cm sandwich tins
  • Bake in the oven at 180C for 25 minutes, until the cakes are springing back to the touch when pressed lightly with a finger in the centre
  • Leave the cakes to cool in their tins for 10 mins before removing & placing on a wire cooling rack until cooled

To make the Swiss meringue buttercream:

  • Bring a medium saucepan filled halfway with water to a gentle simmer
  • In a bowl large enough to rest on top of the saucepan (without touching the water), add in the egg & sugar & whisk together
  • Gently heat the egg & sugar together over the saucepan until all of the sugar has dissolved & you can no longer feel any grains of sugar with your fingertips
  • Either use a hand mixer or pour the egg mixture into the bowl of a stand mixer & whisk for at least 10 minutes until it has thickened to form a glossy meringue texture & had cooled to at least room temperature
  • Keeping the whisk running, add in the butter, one cube at time, ensuring that each addition is well whisked into the meringue before adding the next
  • Add the lemon juice to the meringue & whisk again
  • Continue to whisk for a further 5 minutes until nice & smooth

To assemble the cake:

  • When the cakes are completely cool, divide the raspberry jam between two of the cakes & spread evenly
  • Use half of the Swiss meringue buttercream to carefully  sandwich the cakes together
  • Use the remaining buttercream to cover the sides & top of the cake before using a spatula to smooth & finish

For the decoration:

  • To make the candied lemon slices, begin by slicing the lemon quite thinly
  • Put the slices into a medium sized saucepan along with the sugar & water
  • Gently heat everything until the sugar has completely dissolved
  • Bring the mixture up to the boil & continue to boil for 5 – 10 minutes until the sugar & water have become thick & syrupy
  • Carefully remove the lemon slices, allowing any excess liquid to fall away & place on a cooling rack to dry out before decorating the cake
  • Arrange the lemon slices, raspberries & other decorations on the sides & top of the cake before finishing with a light dusting of freeze dried raspberry powder



Leave a Reply