Lemon & Poppy Seeds Bundt – Lina Saad

Lemon cakes are always scrumptiously delicious, despite scary thoughts of them being too sour. Many of my attempts at a lemon cake were just okay. This time, however, I’ve nailed it.

The notion of “less is more” is exceedingly correct when using lemons in a dessert. Add more sugar to lemons and you lose the actual taste; add less and it’s too sour.

Taste as you go is my motto here. Citrus fruits in general are popular all year round, and recipe collections can be utterly endless.

You see, I wanted to bake a fresh and delicious bundt with an attitude. It was lemons and poppy seeds, and it is one of the best bakes I have attempted this season.

The freshness of the lemon juice and clementine zests all combining softly with the poppy seeds and the rather sweet citrus drizzle gives me that total private-indulging bliss.


Lemon Cake

  • 3 free range eggs
  • 1½ cups of caster sugar
  • 2 ½ cups of all purpose flour
  • ¾ cups of vegetable oil
  • ¼ cups of natural yoghurt
  • 1 ½ tsp baking powder
  • 2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • Juice of 1 ½ lemons
  • Zest of two lemons
  • Zest of two clementines or oranges
  • 1tsp Sicilian lemon flavouring
  • Drop of yellow gel coulour
  • 60g poppy seeds
  • Dash of vanilla

Citrus Drizzle

  • 300g sieved icing sugar
  • 50ml Clementine juice
  • 50ml lemon juice
  • 5ml Sicilian lemon flavouring
  • Zests of a lemon and a Clementine
  • 30g fine grounded pistachios


Lemon Cake

  1. Mix the eggs with the caster sugar and the vanilla until the mixture is light and creamy. Make sure the sugar has dissolved and you can feel that against your fingers or the wooden spoon at the bottom of the bowl.
  2. Add the other wet ingredients like the oil, yoghurt, lemon juice and flavourings. Mix all using an electric mixer for about 5 minutes until well combined.
  3. Now you may add the baking powder and bicarbonate of soda, some of the zests, and all the poppy seeds. Fold altogether with a spatula or wooden spoon.
  4. Use a pre-lined bundt mould 26cm, preferably a good quality silicone mould.
  5. Place in a preheated oven at 180C for about 45 – 50 minutes or until springy and spongy at the top.
  6. Once cooled down, place on a rack and cover with citrus drizzles and sprinkles of grounded pistachios.

Citrus Drizzle

Mix all together gently until the texture is slightly thick.

You may have to adjust with more sugar to make it thicker; and I’ll leave the sweetness to your taste.

lina-saad-ramadan-expressAward-winning food author, Lina Saad, won the Gourmand World Cookbook Award 2018 for the ‘Best Book in the World’.

Representing the UK, chef Lina’s second cookbook ‘Ramadan Express’ was one of eight shortlisted for the Arab Cuisine category.

This is the second time she’s been awarded the Gourmand accolade after her debut cookbook ‘Land of White: Lebanese Cookery’ also triumphed in 2016.

Born in Sierra Leone, West Africa, Lina left for Lebanon to attend school in Beirut, before moving to London when she was 18 to study for a BA in Hotel Management at Westminster College.

Having previously run the acclaimed Lebanese restaurant Alicia on London’s Warren Street for several years, the mother of two now resides in west London as a full-time author and recipe developer.

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