Spiced Apple and Feijoa Cake

Spiced apple and feijoa cake

Feijoa season has landed in EnZed… Ye-haaa!  I had a hankering for feijoas. And Cake. Introducing spiced apple and feijoa cake.

Last weekend  I found myself in possession of 30 odd free range eggs last week and spent the weekend in the kitchen. First I whipped up this carrot cake, always a crowd pleaser. Second I had a hankering for feijoas. Off I went to the green grocers to buy some, ouch NZ$8 for a bag of 10! I need to make friends with someone who has a feijoa tree. Any takers?

Anyway, I had a play in the kitchen, tweaked an ancient apple cake recipe I had, added ground almonds, feijoas, ginger, spice and bugger me days, this spiced apple and feijoa cake turned out perfectly the first time. I’ve made it again since to test it – boom, perfection! I shared a sneaky photo on my Facebook page and there were lots of requests for the recipe to be shared. So, here you go! (more…)

Cafe Style Carrot Cake Recipe

cafe style carrot cake recipeMy mate Cam dropped off a box of carrots and kiwifruit the other day. I have no idea where he got them from and, frankly, I’m too nervous to ask:  I might get arrested. Suffice to say there were enough carrots in there that I’ve been whipping up enough carrot related dishes to the point I’m wondering if we’ll turn orange.  That happened to my little brother once when he was a toddler. Crack up. Anyway, top on the lists of carrot culinary delights was my tried and tested cafe style carrot cake recipe that I’ve made on and off over the years (more years than I care to admit, cough. Shit. I’m old).  

This is one of those recipes that’s been handed around and I love going to a mate’s house to find they’ve made it (unless it’s better than my version… Then I feel aggrieved).   So if you’ve been on the hunt for a top notch carrot cake recipe, look no further, I’ve got you sorted.

This cake is moist, packed full of flavour and texture and super-filling (I know we shouldn’t be getting full on carrot cake, but good luck with that after you’ve made this).  Yeah, it’s delicious.  It’s also super healthy because it contains vegetables. Snort. Oh, it’s also beautifully decorated, if I do say so myself. As you may know I detest decorating cakes with a passion, so this is cake decorating at its best: Get some stuff and sprinkle it on. Easy and effective. Who can resist a pretty looking cake,  especially when there is no art or skill to it?

Lastly, as with a lot of my recipes, this is definitely one where you can substitute ingredients. Don’t like walnuts? Use chopped almonds. Not a date lover? Use raisins or craisins or even diced apricots. Can’t be arsed with faffing around decorating the cake – just use shredded coconut. Or don’t decorate the cake. Let the icing shine. You get my drift.  


Date Cake with Crunchy Caramel Coconut Topping

caramel date cakeI’ve been making this exquisite moist date cake with a crunchy caramel and coconut topping on and off for years. I love it because it’s a reasonably non-fuss cake that I can be made at reasonably short notice and the ingredients are pantry staples I always have on hand. Taste wise, it’s a sensation: It always gets people groaning and asking for more. The only thing to note is that it is best eaten on the day it is made, if not the day after. That’s usually no problem, it gets demolished! (more…)

Five Minute Banana Cake Recipe

five minute banana cakeThis speedy Banana Cake recipe, adapted from a vintage Donna Hay recipe, is brilliant; I’ve been making it for years. We love it in our house as it’s a moist,  light and delicious cake that only requires 5 minutes prep time. It’s one of those fab recipes where you biff most of the ingredients into a food processor and turn it on. Done. No elbow grease required.

This is a brilliant standby for school lunches as it keeps really well (if you can keep the family away from it). Oh, and this is easy enough for kids to make too.


Orange Syrup Pound Cake Recipe

orange syrup pound cake recipe
This is orange syrup pound cake recipe isn’t mine – let’s get that out of the way! Nope, not mine, it’s from NZ Masterchef judge Ray McVinnie and it’s a recipe I’ve made regularly for close to 15 years.   It’s a proper ‘grown ups’ cake, although a 13 month old came for lunch recently and he scoffed it. So I guess it’s really a cake for all ages!

Ray’s base recipe uses lemons, but my orange tree is still going bananas, so I substituted the lemons for oranges and in the syrup I reduced the sugar content as the orange juice brings additional sweetness. I’ve made this using limes too: YUM.   I wrote a post a recipe a few months back that was quite similar to this one (I guess I like oranges!) but this recipe is much simpler and quicker, especially if you are lucky enough to own a cake mixer. Katie (My-Kitchen-Aid-Cake-Mixer) does a beautiful job of this for me, it’s a doddle and the cake itself only takes about 6 minutes to make. Besides, you’ve gotta love a cake that has batter requiring five ingredients (keeps the purists happy). (more…)

Orange and Almond Syrup Cake – with Candied Oranges


What do you do when you live on a former citrus orchard and your orange tree goes, um, bananas?  Invite friends around for lunch so you have an excuse to bake – this cake is amazing.  If this recipe has a few too many steps for you, cull the candied oranges. But if you can be bothered… it turns this cake into something extra special.  It would be easy to turn this into a gluten free recipe by replacing the flour with more almond meal, or using a gluten free flour substitute.