Chocolate, Lavender & Lemon Cake | Living North



image of cake

vegetable oil, for oiling

¾ Tbsp culinary lavender buds (see note)

350g / 12¼oz caster [superfine] sugar

200g / 7oz unsalted butter, softened

280g / 10oz plain [all-purpose] flour

50g / 1¾oz dark chocolate (between

60–70% cocoa solids), grated

50g / 1¾oz cocoa powder

1 tsp baking powder

½ tsp bicarbonate of soda [baking soda]

½ tsp fine sea salt

3 large eggs

180g / 6½oz Greek yogurt

1–2 Tbsp milk


200g / 7oz icing [confectioners’] sugar

40–50ml / 1⅓–1⅔fl oz lemon juice

1½ Tbsp unsalted butter, melted

pinch of salt

lavender sprigs, to decorate


The combination of chocolate, lavender and lemon is an absolute winner in this cake.

The combination of chocolate, lavender and lemon is an absolute winner in this cake. The lavender is subtle –– I promise you it’s not like nibbling a bar of Grandma’s soap at all –– and the lemon adds freshness to the whole shebang. The cake itself is light and moist, but one best eaten within a couple of days. Preheat the oven to 170°C / 340°F / Gas mark 3. Generously brush the inside of a 2.4-litre / 81-fl oz / 2.5-quart Bundt tin with oil, making sure to get into all the crevices. Blitz the lavender and half the sugar to a powder in a food processor. Transfer to a mixing bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, add the remaining sugar and the butter and beat until very pale and creamy –– this will take at least 7 minutes. Using a fork or balloon whisk, whisk the flour, grated chocolate, cocoa, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and salt together in another bowl. In a small jug, whisk the eggs and yogurt together. Add this to the butter and sugar mixture, alternating with the flour mixture, beating well after each addition. Add a splash of milk to loosen if the batter is too stiff to fall off the end of a wooden spoon, but it shouldn’t be runny. Spoon the batter into the prepared tin, smoothing with the back of a spoon to ensure that the batter fills all the crevices at the bottom of the tin. Tap the tin on the work surface a couple of times to remove all the air bubbles. Bake for 40–45 minutes until a skewer inserted in the centre of the cake comes out clean. Leave to cool in the tin for 15 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool. To make the glaze, mix the icing sugar, lemon juice, melted butter and salt together in a bowl. Drizzle over the cooled cake so that it covers the top andruns down the sides, then decorate with lavender sprigs. Note: Culinary lavender is a particularly flavourful variety sold in speciality shops specifically to cook with. Unsprayed lavender buds from the garden are fine but might vary in strength.


Cocoa by Sue Quinn (Quadrille £25) Photography ©Yuki Sugiura

Published in: October 2019

Follow us on Instagram

Never miss an issue... Subscribe

Social Channels

Follow us on Instagram