Last December, my friend Katrina announced she was hosting a contest for readers to win a basket of Greek delicacies from Trofos. A couple of weeks later, I was thrilled to hear I was one of the lucky winners. It wasn't long before I received a package with an international postmark; I opened it to see a cute snowman decoration:
You'll notice two of the jars were wrapped in tissue to prevent them from breaking. And as I unwrapped them, I found myself thinking, "I hope one of these is Greek honey." I couldn't believe my luck when I found a jar of Greek wild thyme honey in one of those packages. While everything in the basket was terrific, I practically sprinted to the computer to find a recipe that uses wild thyme honey. I found a real winner in this lemon cake with a wild thyme honey glaze. It's the glaze that really makes the cake shine, so definitely go the extra mile to find this gorgeous honey that's both strong and sweet. And once you have it, don't even think about using it on toast - I'm saving mine for the next time I bake this lovely dessert.
Thanks to Katrina for this terrific prize! Be sure to check out her blog for a modern take on Greek cooking, and her thoughts on the history and mythology of that beautiful country.
Lemon cake with Greek wild thyme honey
(adapted from My Little Expat Kitchen)
1/2 cup unsalted butter
1 cup sugar
zest of 2 lemons, grated
1 tsp lemon extract
4 large eggs
1 cup flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup sour cream
2/3 cup icing sugar
5 Tbsp whipping cream
1 Tbsp Greek wild thyme honey
Line a loaf pan with parchment paper, and preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Combine softened butter, sugar, lemon zest in stand mixer, and beat on low until just combined. Add lemon extract and beat on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes.
Crack eggs into a small bowl and beat them lightly with a fork. Add the beaten eggs to the bowl in four additions, beating well after each addition to fully combine them.
Mix flour and baking powder in a separate bowl. Pour half the flour mixture into the butter and egg mixture, and stir until combined. Add the sour cream and stir to mix, then add the rest of the flour mixture. Stir only until combined.
Pour the cake batter into the prepared loaf pan and smooth the top with a spatula.
Bake 30 - 35 minutes. Test for doneness; if not fully cooked, leave it in another 5 minutes or until cooked.
Leave the cake in the baking pan for 10 minutes, then remove it and take off the parchment. Let cake cool completely before icing.
To make the glaze, combine the icing sugar, whipping cream and honey in a medium bowl. Mix well until you have a smooth glaze. Spread it over the cake and top with chopped pistachios.