I like these sort of dishes because they allow you to follow a given recipe and then add your own touch to it.  The marinade for this was very good, rich with coriander and sweeten with a touch of honey, a bit of zing from lemon zest and then all of it smoothed and soften with rich green extra virgin olive oil.  The tomato and cilantro salsa was just the perfect accompaniment to the rich and zest meat. I used beef this week since I wasn’t all that happy with the lamb selection my butcher had.  I admit I much prefer beef to lamb anyway so all were happy all the way around.  I also added some red and green pepper chunks and chunks of red onion to the kebabs, only because I felt that big hunks of meat and nothing else just looked too plain and needed a bit of something to meld with the flavors of the marinated meat.  I also served some beef stock flavored boiled rice on the side for a starch.

As I have said many times before, I love all things lemon and this cake was no exception.  It is just the sort of cake that I like, rich with butter and lots of lemon juice and zest and all of that tempered with smooth, creamy yogurt.  I used the thick Greek yogurt for this just for some extra richness.  This cake goes together in a snap but I had to keep doing a double take as the recipe called for an 8 inch pan but the batter filled that size pan right up to the top.  I was sure it was going to be overflowing the pan and spilling out into the oven but it didn’t.  The cake baked up perfectly flat although mine took considerably longer than the 30 minutes the recipe called for to bake.  Mine took about 50 minutes to fully bake and I was worried that it was going to overbake and be dry but it didn’t and it wasn’t and I couldn’t be more pleased with this simple, flavorful snack cake.