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Lemon Tendercake Not Rising

Asked by MimiAlba. Answered on 1st April 2018

Full question

My Lemon Tendercake with Blueberry Compote wasn’t a light super-aerated fluffy pancake, it wasn’t a cake, not like in the photo, the texture was like undercooked pastry. It looked like a ‘squashed’ coconut cake, the top wasn’t golden brown like in Nigella’s video. It was blonde. I couldn’t taste the coconut and the lemon was over powering. Maybe my cake tin was too big, or did I over mix the ingredients?

Image of Nigella's Lemon Tendercake
Photo by Jonathan Lovekin
Lemon Tendercake with Blueberry Compote
By Nigella
  • 14
  • 2

Our answer

Nigella's Lemon Tendercake With Blueberry Compote (from AT MY TABLE) is a vegan cake made with coconut milk. The cake should be moist and have a fairly light texture with a fine crumb. Although there is coconut milk in the cake batter, this gives sweetness rather than taste and the cake should have a bright lemon flavour. The cake is made in a 20cm/8-inch springform cake tin, if the tin is a larger size then the cake will be thinner.

However from the description it could be that the oven was not hot enough. Make sure the oven is fully preheated before you start to mix the cake batter. If the oven temperature is too low then the cake will not rise as well and will not brown on top. The top should be a very pale gold rather than bronzed, but it should have a little colour, particularly at the edges. It may be worth checking the oven temperature with a thermometer and the cake should be baked on the centre shelf of the oven. There is also a possibility that one of the raising agents could be less active, which would cause the cake not to rise as much. Although bicarbonate of soda (baking soda) and baking powder have a best before date sometimes they expire more quickly, particularly in damp conditions, so if yours are close to the best before date then they may need replacing.

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