Thought it was about time to make another loaf and after spending some time tracking down the poppy seeds, as they don't sell them in the giant Tesco near me, I thought I would give this one a whirl.
Another simple recipe, as all the loaf ones are. I love making loaves, you literally just add all the ingredients into one bowl and mix it up. It turns out wonderfully every time, no matter what the flavouring. My only reservation was the poppy seeds in this particular one as I have never eaten anything other than a bagel covered in them and wondered how they would affect the texture of the loaf once baked.
This recipe uses the usual caster sugar mixed with the butter. The eggs went in next followed by the rest of the dry mixture, which is added in three batches instead of two, adding the milk in after the second batch. Lastly the ricotta cheese is stirred in. This is another unusual addition to the standard loaf batter.
Then it was popped into oven for about 65 minutes, slightly longer than the stated time. Oven seems to go through random stages of cooking things down to the stated minutes perfectly and then it has a funny turn and takes longer on things. Came out looking lovely although I had forgotten to make up the soaking syrup so had to put that on asap. The loaf obviously started to cool before it had the syrup added to it and the top of the loaf deflated a little too. I don't think I left the syrup on the heat for longer enough, it looked reduced by half but once I poured it onto the loaf top it was actually absorbed rather than coating it.
This made the loaf a little difficult to cut, as it was so much more moist with the syrup inside it it fell apart as soon as the knife was run through it. Just meant I had to cut a bigger slice each time, what a shame. I cut two slices off to take to my neighbours then came home to taste it for myself. Texture took me a few bites to get past as not used to the continuous small crunchiness on every mouthful. Otherwise it is nice, the lemon is not too overpowering and it is amazingly moist. Need to try and make it with the actual syrup on top next time as I'm sure this will give it a bit more zing, which is needed.