Simple, stunning, almost instant, lashings-of-limoncello cake

During the coronavirus lockdown some people found they had a lot of extra leisure time; for the rest it was the reverse, and I fell into the latter category.

It was the Chief Taster’s birthday, and I had five minutes to create a cake for him.

This looked, and tasted, fabulous: a unanimous success.

And it is a very good way of using up any limoncello you may have been given.

Recipe for simple, stunning, almost instant, lashings of limoncello cake

Serves 4-6


  • 1 x ready made Madeira cake (about 350g/12 oz)
  • 240 ml/1 cup lemon curd yoghurt (or make it with 180ml/¾ cup thick plain yoghurt and 60ml/¼ cup lemon curd)
  • 1 tbsp raspberry jam
  • zest of half a lemon
  • about 120ml/half a cup of limoncello
  • 1 x pack ready-made meringue bites (about 30g/2 oz)
  • a sprinkling of dried lavender if you have any


  1. Cut the cake horizontally in half, pour a couple of tablespoons of limoncello over the bottom layer, and then spread the raspberry jam over it.
  2. Spread some of the lemon curd yoghurt over the upper surface of the bottom layer, and then place the top layer on top.
  3. Prick the upper layer with a fork, and pour over another couple of tablespoons of limoncello.
  4. Spread the rest of the lemon curd yoghurt over the whole cake. Cover with meringue bites. Sprinkle over the lemon zest, and, if you have it, a little dried lavender. The meringues will slowly slide down, just before serving fill any holes with more meringue bites.
  5. Serve with the rest of the limoncello (or, even better, the whole bottle) for people to pour over, or, even, to enjoy drinking in a glass.
This post is dedicated to my brother-in-law, who died of the virus the previous day, but still managed to send a birthday card.

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