A lovely cake for a summer birthday – or any time of the year, really: this cake has become the birthday cake of choice in my family. Served with the berries, it also makes a gorgeous dessert.
Line a 900g (1 lb 13 oz) loaf tin with a strip of nonstick baking paper to cover the base and narrow sides.
Put the butter, caster sugar, egg, flour, grated lemon rind and ground almonds into a bowl or food processor, sprinkle in the baking powder then beat, or process briefly, until light and creamy. This only takes a minute or two so don’t over beat, especially if using a food processor.
Spoon the cake mixture into the prepared loaf tin and gently level the top. Bake in a preheated oven, 160º C, 325º F, Gas Mark 3, for 45–60 minutes, or until risen and firm to a light touch and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.
Five minutes before the cake is done, make the drizzle topping. Mix the lemon juice and icing sugar in a small saucepan, then stir over a gentle heat until the icing sugar has dissolved.
As soon as the cake comes out of the oven, prick the top all over and pour the icing sugar mixture over the top. Set aside to cool, then remove the cake from the tin and strip off the paper.
Prepare the fruit an hour or so before you want to eat. Put it into a bowl, sprinkle over caster sugar to taste and set aside, stirring from time to time. Taste and add a little more sugar if necessary.
Serve the fruit and cake with a bowl of crème fraîche.
Taken from Rose Elliot's Sumptuous Suppers, published by Hamlyn.