I immediately regretted thinking it because summer is so short here in Vancouver; I haven’t soaked up nearly enough sunshine and I still have lots of summer plans on the horizon. But even still, Fall is my favourite season and a part of me can’t wait for crunchy leaves, leather boots, wool scarves and cinnamon apple cider. I’m also excited because this will be Port and Fin’s first Fall, meaning we can make and post deliciously cozy foods like stew, squash pastas, cheesy casseroles and roasts.
But we’ve got a ways to go until then and I still have a lot of summer dishes calling my name.
Summertime just screams CITRUS and I can’t get enough. Lemons, limes, oranges, grapefruits, they’re all bursting with such flavour and colour and I love everything about them. Citrus is a pretty powerful flavour, but so versatile when used in baking or cooking. If you need proof, check out this post, and this and this.
I was making my way through a pot of Earl Grey tea the other day (my favourite – I think I have 5 different kinds on my tea shelf) (yes I have an entire shelf in my cupboard dedicated solely to tea), and while I usually go for a tiny bit of vanilla syrup and some almond milk, I was feeling a bit adventurous so I threw in a couple lemon slices instead. And let me just say: delicious. The longer it steeped the more lemony it became, until it turned into some amazing earl grey/lemonade/neocitron-like summer drink. I wondered why it had taken me so long to combine the two.
And just like that, earl grey and lemon became my friends.
I was already planning on making a lemon loaf, and the earl grey + lemon realization inspired me to top it with a classic lemon glaze infused with some earl grey tea leaves. The flavours go together so well and taste so refreshing. I added extra poppyseeds because what’s a lemon loaf without poppyseeds? They give such a delightful crunch that the 5 minutes spent picking them out of your teeth later is totally worth it.
This loaf is extra moist owing to the use of yogurt instead of butter. Bonus! Four days later it was still as moist as it was on the day I made it. The batter comes together in minutes and takes about an hour to bake in the oven. Once the loaf has cooled it’s topped with a lemon syrup for added moisture, then finished with a lemon earl grey glaze. While the syrup and glaze step are optional, I don’t think I’d ever make this loaf without them! You could make these into cupcakes too, just be sure to adjust the baking time.
|Lemon Poppyseed Loaf with a Lemon Earl Grey Glaze|| || |
- 1½ cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp salt
- 4 Tbsp poppyseeds
- 1 cup plain yogurt
- 1 cup sugar
- 3 eggs
- 2 tsp lemon zest (from about 2 lemons)
- ½ tsp vanilla
- ½ cup vegetable oil
- ½ cup lemon juice, strained (from about 3 lemons)
- ½ cup sugar
- 1 cup icing sugar
- 2 Tbsp lemon juice, strained
- 1 tsp earl grey tea leaves (about 1 teabag)
- Preheat oven to 350°. Grease a 9x5 loaf pan, dust with flour, then tap out any excess.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, salt and poppyseeds; set aside.
- In a large bowl, mix together yogurt, sugar, eggs, lemon zest, vanilla and vegetable oil. Slowly add in dry ingredients until mixed.
- Pour batter into pan and bake for about 1 hour until a toothpick inserted into the centre comes out clean. Let cool 10 minutes in the pan before transferring to a wire rack with a baking sheet underneath.
- While loaf is cooling, make syrup. In a small saucepan over medium heat, stir together lemon juice and sugar until dissolved. Cook for another 5 minutes until slightly thickened. Use a toothpick to poke holes in the top and sides of the loaf, then brush with lemon syrup. Let sit for 5 minutes to let the loaf soak in the syrup, then baste again. Repeat two more times. Let cool completely.
- When loaf has cooled, make glaze. Whisk together icing sugar, lemon juice and tea leaves. Pour glaze over loaf, let harden for 20 minutes, then slice and serve.