Serves 6
Prep Time
Cook Time
Difficulty Level
Download or Print

Are cupcakes now too sweet for your taste? Here’s a similar dessert that you can’t outgrow – a sophisticated ‘cakelette’ that boasts the all-familiar vanilla sponge, but with an elevated lemon curd cream frosting and a sprinkling of gin syrup. An indulgent, but not too over-the-top treat with cool and refreshing slices of baby cucumber.


  • 2 Lebanese cucumbers (260 g)
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 150 g butter, softened
  • ¾ cup (165 g) caster sugar
  • 2 tsps finely grated lemon rind
  • 2 tsps vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs
  • 1¾ cups (260 g) plain flour
  • 2 tsps baking powder
  • 4 baby cucumbers (qukes) (160 g)


  • ½ cup (110 g) caster sugar
  • ¼ cup (60 ml) gin
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp water


  • 1 cup (250 ml) thickened (heavy) cream
  • ⅓ cup (100 g) lemon curd

Preheat oven to 180 C. Grease a 6-hole Texas (¾ cup/180 ml) muffin pan; line each hole with a 16 cm square of baking paper.


Cut Lebanese cucumbers in half lengthways; scrape out seeds and discard. Coarsely chop cucumbers. Blend or process cucumber with juice until smooth.


Beat butter, sugar, rind and vanilla in a bowl with an electric mixer until pale and creamy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Gently fold in sifted flour and baking powder, then cucumber mixture until just combined. Spoon into pan holes.


Bake cakes for 25 mins or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.


Meanwhile, make gin syrup. Stir ingredients in a small saucepan over low heat, without boiling, until sugar dissolves. Bring to the boil; boil, without stirring, for 1 min.


Make lemon curd cream. Whisk cream in a bowl with an electric mixer until soft peaks form. Swirl through lemon curd.


Use a skewer to poke holes in the top of each cake; pour hot gin syrup over hot cakes. Leave to cool in pans.


Thinly slice baby cucumbers lengthways using a mandoline or V-slicer. Place slices in a bowl of iced water for 10 mins. Drain well.


Serve cakes topped with lemon curd cream and cucumber curls.

TIP These light lemony cakes have a delicate cucumber flavour, similar to a botanical gin; which makes these perfect for an afternoon tea party. These cakes are best made on the day of serving.

Photo: bauersyndication.com.au

Download or print the recipe