Times when something that looks and tastes a little different would make you happy, try this sweet, tart, sticky cake—citrusy and dense, with a fragrant syrupy finish.  For bakers, the ratios might seem a little different—a bit experimental, but a nice, sweet surprise.


  • 1 ½ cup softened butter
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • Zests of 1 lemon and 1 orange
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • 7/8 cup toasted, ground almonds
  • 4 eggs–whisked separately
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • 1 ½ tblsp poppy seeds


  • ¾ cup light brown sugar
  • Juice of the 1 lemon and 1 orange
  • Finely chopped candied ginger or citrus peels (optional)

In a stand mixer, cream the butter and sugar until fluffy.  Add the citrus zest, sour cream and vanilla.  Whisk the flour, almonds, baking powder and soda—and in a separate bowl, whisk the eggs.  Add the whisked eggs slowly to the butter and sugar while gently beating—then mix in the flour mixture.  Stir in the poppy seeds.  Line a 12-cup muffin tin with parchment squares or large paper liners—fill each cup with batter.  Bake in pre-heated 350’ oven for about 20 minutes—toothpick will come out clean when cakes are done. 

While cakes are baking, bring sugar, ginger and peels if using, and citrus juices to a boil—boil for 3-4 minutes, until mixture gets a bit syrupy.  As soon as cakes are done, pierce them thoroughly with a skewer—spoon syrup over tops of cakes so it disappears into holes.  Cool thoroughly.  Serve as is or with a little ice cream or dessert sauce.

The Kitchen Hive

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