I don’t know what it is but I’m not much of a fan of fantasy. Anthony on the other hand is. I think I lack an imagination to find any interest in it; for me, there needs to be a scientific reasoning for everything! It’s been a mission and a half for him to get me to watch Lord of the Rings! I still haven’t watch any of the movies but I did promise him many years ago that if he proposes then I’ll watch it. When we are married, I’m still going to try delay it as much as I can because I can be stubborn like that… :p
One of his more successful missions though was to get me watching Game of Thrones. He had read the books before the tv series came out and I remember him being all giddy about this new “upcoming” tv show.
I can’t exactly remember how I stumbled upon this site but basically it’s a food blog called Inn at the Crossroads; where 2 Game of Thrones foodie fans recreate recipes from the novel series A Song of Ice and Fire. It was a while later that I discovered their hard work had paid off as they landed themselves a book deal to publish the Official Game of Thrones Cookbook; which is mighty impressive as a foreword is featured by the author of the books.
For Christmas last year, this was one of the presents I got Anthony. He likes food and Game of Thrones. What a better way to
get him cooking combine two things he enjoys!?
The recipes in this cookbook features some of those found in all 7 kingdoms this story is set in, ranging from savoury to sweet and includes some beverages. Most recipes featured in the cookbook (as well as the blog) contain 2 versions; a modern and medieval version (to keep up with the medieval fantasy world that the series is set in). The medieval versions are adaptations from actual medieval recipes, and are often amusing to read.
One day, Anthony and I finally decided to make something from this cookbook. One of the recipes we’d seen being harped on and on by one of the girls on Twitter was lemon cakes. “What’s so goddamn good about these lemon cakes anyway?!” So we decided to see what all the fuss was about.
If you follow me on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram, you would have noticed that I’ve been slightly obsessed with these so-called lemon cakes. They aren’t actually cakes as such, more like cookies, well the medieval version at least. No joke, within a matter of moments of taking these babies out of the oven, Anthony and I had eaten about 6 each in one sitting! They were that good! Moreish, chewy cookies jam-packed with lemon goodness.
Addiction is then what drove me to make another batch of these lemon cakes the following day! Now here is where I let you in on a secret… You would think that the first time someone tries a new recipe that they stick to the recipe right? Well not me! Unless I’m way out of my league, I don’t really follow recipes to a tee… The second time I made these lemon cakes, I followed the recipe (seeing as I’d modified it). However, it produced a different lemon cake with a slightly different texture and the lemon flavour wasn’t that strong.
Perfectionist. That is who I am. I can’t help it… So I set forth to recreate these lemon cakes to match the first batch we had made and it worked like a treat. These lemon cakes are ridiculously easy to make and even more ridiculously easy to eat a lot without realising it.
Then of course, I had to make the modern version of these lemon cakes (for research sakes)… And this version actually lives up to its name as they resemble cake and not cookies. These bite-size, pound cake-like morsels do require a bit more effort than their medieval counterpart. A lemon cake is baked, cooled and cut into small cubes and then covered with a zesty lemon glaze (which reminds me of lemon sherbet).
Having made both versions, I’ll think when I have cravings for Game of Thrones lemon cakes that I’ll stick to making the medieval version. Only because it’s quicker to make and they yield something incredibly addictive due to the texture and flavour.
Having said that, just about when I thought there couldn’t be any more lemon cakes, I find this recipe. It’s a lemon cake recipe from the HBO guys. What’s intriguing about this lemon cake is that it seems like you make a batter, cook it in ramekin moulds in a water bath and the final product results in a spongy cake that melts and an intense lemon glaze on top. I guess I have to test this for another day…
- For the lemon cakes:
- 2 1/2 cups plain flour
- 2 cups caster sugar
- 85g unsalted butter, cubed
- Zest of 2 lemons
- 1 egg
- 2 egg yolks
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- For the lemon glaze:
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- 1/4 cup icing sugar, sifted
- Preheat the oven to 180C (350F) and line baking trays with baking paper. Combine the flour and sugar together in a large bowl. Rub the butter into the flour mixture until fine crumbs form.
- Add lemon zest to the flour mixture. In a small bowl, lightly whisk the egg and egg yolks together and pour into the flour mixture; along with the lemon juice. Knead the dough together until well combined. Shape the dough into 3cm (1inch) balls, placing them 5cm (2inch) apart on the baking tray. Bake for 13-15mins until golden. Allow to cool for 5mins on tray.
- Mix the lemon juice and icing sugar for the glaze. Dip the tops of the cookie into the lemon glaze to soak and place on rack to cool.
- If you want a more intense lemon flavour, dip the cookies into the lemon glaze a second time. Best eaten within 3-5 days.
- For the cake:
- 2 1/2 cups plain flour, sifted
- 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/4 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 225g unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 1/2 cups caster sugar
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 3 large eggs, room temperature
- 40mL of lemon juice (about 1/2 lemon)
- Zest of 2 lemons
- 1 cup milk
- For the icing:
- 3 cups icing sugar, sifted
- 80mL of lemon juice (about 1 lemon)
- 1 tsp unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
- Yellow food colouring (optional)
- Garnishes such as candied orange peel, pomegranate seeds or decorative sprinkles (optional)
- Preheat oven to 180C (350F). Grease a 27.5x17.5cm (11x7inch) baking pan and line with baking paper.
- Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a medium bowl; set aside.
- Beat the butter and sugar until fluffy; add the vanilla and then the eggs, one at a time until well-incorporated after each addition. Add lemon juice and zest and mix until just combined. Alternatively add the flour mixture and milk in 2 batches; don't overmix!
- Pour into pan and bake for 30-35mins, or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Cool the cake in the pan for 15mins, cut into 2.5cm (1inch) cubes and place onto wire rack (with newspaper underneath) to cool completely.
- Mix icing sugar with lemon juice, stir in the butter. Mix until the icing is a smooth, pouring consistency (add more lemon juice, if necessary). Tint icing with food colouring, if using.
- Drizzle about 1 teaspoon of icing over each cake, and decorate, if desired. Set lemon cakes aside to set before serving.
- Best eaten within 3 days.