18 August, 2020
In this classic lemon delicious dessert, I have added an extra hint of flavour by infusing the milk with lemon verbena leaves. This is optional but makes a nice addition if you have the herb on hand. It is available from bulk food stores that sell loose-leaf herb teas.
Lemon verbena is an easy-care perennial herb. I grow it in a pot to keep at a manageable size and regularly prune the branches to then hang in a warm position to dry. Once dry, I store the leaves in a large jar for an uplifting tea – add 2-3 leaves to a cup and pour over boiling water.
A seedling makes an excellent gift – which is where mine came from – and a small plant in a pot will produce enough leaves for lemon-scented tea year-round. A must-have herb in any big or small garden.
Lemon Delicious - Infused with Lemon Verbena
- 1 cup (250ml) milk of choice (I used oat milk)
- 5-6 lemon verbena leaves or 1 tsp dried leaf -optional
- 70 g butter
- ¼ cup (50g) sugar
- 2 tbsp mild honey or use extra sugar
- 3 eggs, separated
- 2 lemons
- ½ cup (70g) self-raising flour
Preheat the oven to 170°C. Grease a 20 x 25cm baking dish.
If using the lemon verbena, first heat the milk in a small saucepan until hot (do not boil). Remove from the heat, add the verbena and leave to infuse for 15 minutes. Remove the leaves.
Place the butter, sugar and honey in a bowl and use an electric beater to mix until fluffy and creamy. Add the egg yolks and zest of 1 lemon. Beat again to combine.
Sift over the flour and use a spatula to fold into the egg mixture, followed by the infused milk.
Juice the lemons – you want about one-third of a cup of juice – and stir through the mixture. It will be quite a runny batter.
Place the egg whites into a bowl and use clean beaters to whisk until soft peaks form. Fold this through the lemon mixture then pour into the prepared dish. Sit the dish inside a roasting tray and pour boiling water into the tray to come halfway up the sides of the dish. Bake for 25-30 minutes until the lemon delicious is just set - a little wobble is fine. Serve with cream or vanilla ice cream.
*Recipe first published 15th August 2020 on Stuff.co.nz.