History of Lemon Drizzle

The History Of The Lemon Drizzle Cake!

Do you know how or when the lemon drizzle cake was created? Well, no-one really knows, or even who invented it…


People remember their mums and grandmas making this cake back in the 1950s and 1960s and enjoying this every week and biting into this light, fluffy and zingy cake . Who knows, this was the waste not want not  post-war culture, when nothing was wasted. Maybe, after making the cake with the zest of a lemon, they then took a large kitchen fork or a juicer and squeezed every last drop and morsel and bit of lemon pith onto the top of the cake.

Maybe, one day when the lemon cake was a tad burned, or a tad hard and the ingenious baker thought they would soften it with the leftover lemon? 

I like the thought of running out of icing sugar and replacing this with granulated sugar, stirring it around and around and yelping when it just wouldn’t dissolve to create the usual icing. Then, throwing caution to the wind and pouring the lemon mix over the cake with a startled look of horror. Only to find that they’d created something rather magical that will change the face of baking forever.

I do feel that they’re all right, generations of incredible bakers and custodians of their inherited and gifted recipes have indeed, been passed down this to ensure we never forget, never lose and never stop loving our cakes.

Whatever the history, the beautiful lemon cake is happily embroiled in history, that we can find a variation in each of our homes.

We can see that the very first published recipe of this cake was in July 1967 by a lady called Evelyn Rose. Evelyn’s recipe was published in her column in the Jewish Chronicle, and she put pen to paper and called it Luscious Lemon Cake Evelyn wrote her column every week from 1963 and never missed a single issue all the years that she was at home there. As I turn to page 251 in her cookbook, I can see the first ever published recipe that was the foundation for so many different variations of this cake.

I don my hat to the mighty and majestic Evelyn Rose, not only for her recipe, but that she and I share what is a gold dust in any cake recipe and I can tell she is a lady of refined recipes… That shared secret is that she puts in a pinch of salt to her recipes.

I implore you; that each recipe is perfected with a good pinch of salt to any cake recipe. It enhances  and  creates a depth of flavour that makes your eyes lovingly close and your mouth upturn into a smile with your first bite. People delight as their fork gently slices through the crunch of the sugar and the lemon-soaked sponge air bubbles as they pop!

My own recipe is Gluten free, it’s always intensely lemony, a heavier lemony hit than Evelyn’s, but I just love lemon so much that I use twice as much as I’ve found in any other recipe. There’s a cake test that we all love and that’s the chink of a fork, placed onto an empty China cake plate, says it all!

Now go bake this Lemontastic Drizzle Cake, your heart is calling and we will never, underestimate our love of a lemon cake engulfed in drizzle.

Love Baking and want to know how I create my luscious Lemon Drizzle… Well this will be shared in my forthcoming Gluten Free Angela Bake Club! A 10 week course where I share how I make 10 of my all time favourate Gluten Free Sweet and Savoury Bakes and register here

Happy Baking


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