Courgette, lemon & poppy seed cake

What does one do when waiting for their overdue baby to arrive? Bake!


My husband will confirm that my baking efforts historically were at best pitiful and at worse downright dangerous but since I have had some time to kill while on maternity leave (before our baby arrives obviously) I have been baking all kinds of muffins, cakes, biscuits and breads and to my delight, they tick the edible box and actually taste amazing. Frankly, I blame our old oven. So inaccurate.


We have had tonnes of courgettes from our kitchen garden this year. This is a recipe that I found online and slightly modified to boost its lemon and poppy-seed creds. It will serve 12 people with a slice of light, zingy, not-too-sweet cake which washed down with a cuppa in the sunshine, is the perfect way to chill before bubba arrives as well as use our courgette surplus.

You’ll need:

200g grated courgette
150g caster sugar
1 egg
125ml vegetable oil
200g plain flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1/4 tsp baking powder
1 tsp of ground ginger OR cinnamon (dependent on your preference. I use ginger)
2 tsp lemon zest
1 tsp lemon juice
1 tsp poppy seeds


1. Preheat the oven to 160 C.
2. Grease a loaf tin with some unsalted butter
3. In a bowl, beat together the courgette, sugar, egg, lemon juice, poppy seeds and oil
4. In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, salt, bicarb of soda, baking powder, spices (whichever you choose) and the lemon zest
5. Gently stir the flour mixture into the courgette mixture until just blended
6. Pour the batter into the prepared tin
7. Bake for 45 minutes
8. Remove and leave to cool for about 10 mins before turning out to cool completely on a wire rack
9. Optional – once completely cool, finish with a good drizzle of sugary lemon juice just before serving

Sit back and enjoy!