There are a lot of these recipes out there but this one not only works out perfectly, it’s also straight forward and there’s no mixer required! Borrowed from the New York Times, I also love Melissa Clark’s idea of taking this on a picnic and packing it ‘to-go’ in the loaf pan that it was cooked in, already sliced and travel protected. Individual slices also freeze very well if you ever needed to make this ahead – enjoy!
1 c. sugar AND zest of 2 lemons
1/2 c. buttermilk AND 3 T. freshly squeezed lemon juice AND 3 eggs
1 3/4 c. flour AND 1 1/2 t. baking powder
1/4 t. EACH baking soda AND sea salt
2/3 c. olive oil AND 1 T. poppy seeds
Glaze – 4 t. freshly squeezed lemon juice AND 1/2 c. icing sugar
Preheat the oven to 350 and generously butter an 8-inch loaf pan. In a large bowl, combine the sugar and zest by either rubbing it together with your fingers or grinding it with the back of a spoon against the sides of the bowl – it should end up looking like wet sand. Whisk in the buttermilk, lemon juice and eggs.
In a separate, smaller bowl, whisk together the 4 dry ingredients, then add the dry to the wet and whisk to combine well, then whisk in the oil and poppy seeds. Scrape the batter into your prepared loaf pan and bake for about one hour until a toothpick comes out of the center clean. The top will be golden and will spring back and the edges will have pulled away from the pan a tiny bit. Leave the loaf to cool in the pan for 20 to 30 minutes before turning it out (right side up!) onto a rack over a piece of parchment.
Whisk the 2 glaze ingredients together and drizzle over the still warm loaf, giving it time to soak in – use it all! The loaf slices best when cooled completely, but this is really heavenly warm.