Sweetest Christmas ever: Squares of lemon poppy seeds

Poppy seed cakes have been a favorite of mine for their subtle and elegant bitterness, which goes well with lemon.



170g unsalted butter, cubed and extra for greasing

170g golden caster Sugar

Finely grated 1 lemon zest, and 2 tbsp of lemon juice

3 medium eggs

170g Self-raising flour, sifted

1 teaspoon baking powder, sifted

Poppy Seeds 30g


50g unsalted butter

1 tbsp of lemon juice

200g icing sugar, sifted

Poppy seeds to scatter

  • Heat the oven to 170C fan/gas 5, and then grease a round baking dish measuring 23cm x 23cm. In a food processor cream butter, sugar, lemon zest and then add eggs. Next, mix in the flour, baking powder, and next the egg. Mix in the lemon zest and pulse until smooth. Add the poppy seed and pulse again.
  • Place the mixture in a tin and smoothen the top. Bake for about 30 minutes, or until the cake is firm to the touch. The cake should be cooled by running a knife around its edges.
  • To make the icing: In a small saucepan heat the butter, lemon zest, and sugar until it is smooth. Sprinkle the icing sugar over the top of your cake. (You may not need all of it). Let it set for about 30 minutes, before you cut into squares. You can keep it covered for several days.