Recipe: Lemon and Blueberry Poke Cake


Serves 8


  • 225g unsalted butter, softened
  • 225g golden caster sugar
  • 2 lemons, zested and juiced
  • 4 medium eggs
  • 200g self-raising flour, sifted
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 50g ground almonds

For the blueberry compote:

  • 200g blueberries
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp icing sugar
  • 2 tsp cornflour

For cream cheese frosting:

  • 2 tbsp icing sugar
  • 40g unsalted butter, softened
  • 250g full-fat soft cheese, cold
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract


  1. Heat the oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4.
  2. Butter and line an 18cm square cake tin.
  3. For the sponge, beat the butter and sugar with an electric whisk until pale and creamy.
  4. Add the lemon zest and mix again.
  5. Beat in the eggs one at a time, adding a tbsp of flour to the batter if the mix starts to curdle.
  6. Add the remaining flour and baking powder and beat again until smooth. Fold in the ground almonds and lemon juice.
  7. Spoon into the cake tin, level the surface and bake for 1 hour – 1 hour 10 minutes, until risen and golden. A skewer inserted into the centre should come out clean.
  8. Cool in the tin for 10 minutes, remove and cool on a wire rack for 20 minutes, until just warm.
  9. To make the compote, tip the blueberries, lemon juice, sugar and cornflour into a pan and simmer until the berries start to burst and release their liquid (add a splash of water if needed). Leave to cool.
  10. Put the cake on a serving plate. Using the handle of a wooden spoon, poke holes all over the cake about halfway through the sponge, 3cm apart. Spoon the compote over the cake, letting the blueberries fall into the holes.
  11. Let the cake cool. The berry juices will soak into the cake.
  12. To make the frosting, beat the icing sugar and butter with an electric whisk until pale and fluffy. Add the cream cheese and vanilla extract and whisk again for about 5 minutes.
  13. Spread the frosting over the cake and cut it into squares.

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