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Buckland Abbey honey cake recipe

Published on August 5, 2014
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Honey cake

The flavours in Sybil Kapoor’s beautiful honey cake recipe will change by the season depending on the honey used

Serves 10

You will need

  • Honey 115g
  • Butter 115g, softened
  • Castor sugar 115g
  • Medium eggs 2
  • Self raising flour 225g
  • Mixed spice 1½ tsp
  • Whole milk 100ml, as necessary


  1. Pre-heat the oven to 170°c/gas 4. Lightly oil a 20cm square or 18cm baking tin. Line the base and sides with baking parchment and lightly oil.

  2. If your honey is thick, gently warm over a low heat, then set aside until tepid but still runny.

  3. In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy. Gradually beat in the honey, followed by the eggs, a little at a time. Sift the flour and spice over the mixture and fold in, using a metal spoon. If necessary, add a little milk: the mixture should drop from the spoon in soft blobs. Spoon into the prepared tin.

  4. Bake for 25-30 minutes (depending on the size of your cake) or until golden. Test by lightly pressing the cake with your fingertips; it will spring back if cooked. Transfer to a wire rack and leave to cool in the tin for 5 minutes. Turn out and leave until cold.

Chef’s tip: The house will fill with the scent of honey as you bake this cake. This honey cake recipe is from the National Trust’s Buckland Abbey in Devon, which has reintroduced bees to the estate, continuing the monastic tradition of keeping hives in orchards. So depending on the time of the year, the cake might be infused with lime or bramble blossom honey.

Recipes from National Trust Simply Baking by Sybil Kapoor. 

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