Tag Archives: cake

Blueberry Upside Down Cake

  • Blueberry Upside-Down Cake

As we all know, blueberries are a super food.  I take this to mean that this is a health food cake!

• 1/3 c brown sugar
• 300 g blueberries, plus extra to serve
• 1 ¾ c plain flour
• 1 c caster sugar
• 2 ½ t baking powder
• ½ t cinnamon
• 1 egg
• ¾ c milk
• 1/3 c vegetable oil
• Finely grated rind of 1 lemon

Preheat oven to 180 C. Line a 20cm round cake pan with baking paper. Sprinkle base of cake pan with brown sugar and then spread 150 g of blueberries evenly over the sugar.

Sift dry ingredients into a large bowl and mix well. Add remaining blueberries and mix to coat.

Whisk together egg, milk, oil and lemon rind. Add to dry ingredients and mix until well combined. Pour into the prepared pan and bake for 45-50 minutes or until skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.

Stand for 5 minutes before turning out onto a plate. Serve warm or at room temperature with extra blueberries and thickened cream.

Cinnamon Slice


This recipe is just another excuse to indulge my love of cinnamon.  Goes well at a cake stall!

Cinnamon Slice


  • 250g plain flour
  • 250g caster sugar
  • 1 T cinnamon
  • 2 t baking powder
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 c milk
  • 125g butter, melted
  • 4 T caster sugar extra
  • 4 t cinnamon extra

Preheat oven to 180C. Line a 20 x 30 baking pan with baking paper. Combine extra sugar and extra cinnamon in a small bowl and set aside.

Sift flour, caster sugar, cinnamon and baking powder into a bowl, and make a well in the middle.  Whisk eggs and milk in a small bowl. Pour egg mixture into the flour and mix with a metal spoon to roughly combine. Fold in the butter until batter is smooth – don’t overmix!

Pour half of the mixture into the pan and smooth out.  Sprinkle 2/3 of the cinnamon sugar mixture evenly over the batter. Gently smooth the remaining batter over.  Top with left over cinnamon sugar.

Bake for 25 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Cool in the pan before slicing.

“Sweet Food”

This recipe is adapted from a recipe in Sweet Food (Lynn Lewis (ed.).  Millers Pt : Murdoch Books, c2003, p98).  I just have to make mention of this book as it is one of my favourite go to books when I need to whip up a quick cake or slice.  There is a a good mix of reliable, easy to make and well articulated recipes for the time poor home baker.  I highly recommend it if you can find a copy!

Sweet Food

Merry Christmas 2012


New South Wales, far south coast, Christmas Day began with the shrill cries of black cockatoos, heralding a cloudy/rainy day.   Then the morning chorus of bird calls began. It is gentle at that hour – I know the hour – 5.10am – because my son was awake, and using every ounce of willpower he possessed to, a) stay awake, and b) not wake anyone else until an ‘acceptable” time.  Eventually, it must have seemed like many hours to him but it was in fact only 5.40am, I heard him wake up his sister in the loudest whisper – “Merry Christmas We Are Allowed To OpenThe  Presents In Our Stockings Be Quiet Every One Else Is Sleeping!!”.

MerryXmas2012The day was indeed cool overcast and drizzly.  Perfect for my planned traditional turkey meal.  With only a small group to feed, the Christmas meal was so easy.  Not the mountains of food I remember from my childhood in the States where the turkey would cover a small table all by itself – but then we did have many more mouths to feed.

The real effort for the Christmas meal was in the cake. Fruit cakes and puddings are the Australian tradition and Wal loves a fruit cake. They are costly and time consuming to make it but worth the effort – rich and flavoursome and completely decadent.


Jen’s Fruitcake Recipe

Fruit mince

Fruit mince can be made a few weeks ahead. I like some tartness in my fruit mince, so I use fewer raisons and sultanas than in most recipes, and substitute other dried fruits. Fill the measuring cups generously!

  • 750 g dried dates, chopped
  • 1 c sultanas
  • 1 1/2 c currents
  • 1 3/4 c dried apricots, chopped
  • 1/2 c dried apples, chopped
  • 1/2 c dried pears, chopped
  • 1/2 c dried blueberries
  • 1/2 c dried cranberries, halved
  • 1 c decent quality brandy (I use 1/2 c standard brandy, and 1/2 c cherry brandy)

Mix all ingredients together in a large bowl.  Transfer to air tight containers and set aside to marinate until required.


Fruit cake recipe

  • 9 c prepared fruit mince
  • 250 g butter, softened
  • 1 c raw sugar
  • 1/2 c raspberry jam
  • 4 lg eggs
  • 1 t vanilla
  • 2 3/4 c plain flour
  • 1 t mixed spice
  • 1 t cinnamon
  • 1/2 t freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1/2 t ground cloves
  • 3-4 T brandy or rum, extra

Double line a 23cm (9 in.) spring form cake tin with baking paper, and preheat oven to 160C.

Beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, and beat in.  Add vanilla.

Mix dried ingredients together. Stir the fruit and combined dry ingredients in alternating batches into the mixture. Spoon into the prepared tin and tap on the counter a couple of times to remove any air pockets.  Smooth over top with wet fingers or wet spoon.

Bake for 2 – 2 1/2 hours, or until a skewer comes out clean.  Remove from oven and immediately pour brandy over the cake, concentrating on the edges, and any cracks in the surface. Leave cake in the tin, cover the top with more baking paper and wrap in a large towel, and leave to cool.  You can leave it this way for a number of days.


  • 1 1/2 c sifted pure icing sugar
  • 3 T butter, softened
  • 1 t vanilla extract
  • 1 egg white
  • milk

In a small bowl, beat egg white until soft peaks form.

In a medium sized bowl beat sugar, butter and 2 T milk.  Add egg white and beat until well mixed and smooth.  Add milk, half a teaspoon at a time until you have the desired texture. Ice and decorate the cake as desired.

For extra extravagence, serve with cream whipped with honey, cinnamon and vanilla!  Think hard about the gym as you eat – maybe that mental exercise will help!


And to finish off our Australian Christmas we had a very rare and special visitor in the garden – an echidna!  Merry Christmas!


Chocolate Oatmeal Squares


With school starting back yesterday the sprogs were very grumpy indeed. It’s not that they don’t like school. It’s just that they like not being at school so much more. These holidays they scored an extra week off due to a visit from some of our American family, and I find that the longer the time off, the harder it is to get them back into the school head space.  It starts with begging to stay down south, “just one more night, just one…. pleeeez??” When that doesn’t work, the ‘headaches’ and coughing begin. Poor things, they strain themselves so much to sound convincing that they actually do end up with sore throats. And so it goes on…  It is really an impressive effort.

But… after lengthy discussion about the necessity of going, and the promise of a scrumptious chocolate treat for recess, they give in and agree to feel better by morning and get up early enough to be dragged off to school. The treat of choice, these chocolate squares, are very rich, loaded with choc bits, and topped with a butterscotch icing.  Very decadent and a rare treat.


  • 8 T unsweetened cocoa (my favourite is the Woolworths Home Brand for a darker richer result)
  • ¾ c butter
  • 1 c water
  • 1 c oats
  • 1 c raw sugar
  • 1 c brown sugar, lightly packed
  • 3 large eggs
  • 60 ml cherry brandy
  • 1 t vanilla extract
  • 2 c plain flour
  • 2 t baking powder
  • ½ t salt
  • ¾ c dark chocolate bits

Preheat oven to 180C. Line a 33 x 23 cm baking pan. Melt butter and cocoa in saucepan over medium heat. Add water and bring to boil. Remove from heat and beat in oats, sugars, eggs, brandy and vanilla.  Add flour, baking powder and salt in 3 batches, and beat on medium til fully blended with each batch.  Stir in choc bits.

Pour into baking pan and cook for 15-20 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean.  Cool the cake before icing. The squares are best eaten the next day but are also nice when iced still slightly warm, for a softer lighter square.


  • ½ c butter
  • 1 c brown sugar, lightly packed
  • ¼ c milk
  • 1 ½ – 1 ¾ c icing sugar

Melt butter in saucepan and stir in brown sugar. Bring to boil and stir constantly for 2 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in milk. Cool slightly.  Gradually stir in sifted icing sugar.  Continue to stir as mixture cools further, until it thickens to a spreadable consistency. Decorate as desired.