Archive | September, 2011

Louise Slice

4 Sep

This is a very traditional kiwi treat.  You will find this slice in any good cafe in New Zealand.  I am always surprised how easy it is to make when it looks so complicated.  A guy at my work reminded me of this slice when he was reminiscing about his granny’s baking back in New Zealand.  I think he will be surprised when I bring him some of mine to try.  I hope it is good as he remembers.

Ingredients:

Base:

  • 100g softened butter
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 cup self-raising flour
  • 1 cup plain flour

filling:

  • ½ cup berry jam

Topping:

  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ¾ cup desiccated coconut

Oven: Preheat to 160.C

Method:

Line a large loose bottom slice tin with baking paper.

Place the softened butter and the sugar into a food processor and mix.  Separate the eggs and add the yolks and vanilla to the mixture in the food processor.  Then add all the flour and mix until crumbly.  Tip the crumbly mixture into the slice tin and press down till you get a flat surface.  Bake the base for 15 minutes.

While the base is cooking, beat the egg whites and vanilla until frothy with an electric hand beater.  Then add the sugar and beat until the tips of the peaks turn over when the hand beater is lifted from them.  Gently fold the coconut through the meringue being careful not to remove any air from the mixture.

Remove the base from the oven and spread the jam evenly over the hot partially cooked base.

Dollop the meringue over the jam and then lightly spread out using a flat knife.

Place back into the oven for a further 15 minutes or until the meringue is slightly brown and looks crisp.

Comments:

I had just sourced from my local supermarket some yummy NZ jam and it was rhubarb and red berry.  Sounds delicious doesn’t it.  Well it sure is, so I used it in this recipe.  In New Zealand I used to use the coconut shreds but unfortunately I am unable to find them here in Singapore.  They just give a bit more bite and texture to the slice but it is still good with the normal desiccated coconut.

Adapted from: Every good New Zealand cookbook that I have read.

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Tropical Banana Cake

4 Sep

This is a very dense cake that is moist and full of fruit.  In fact this cake started the morning tea cake club at QMC (my husbands old work place) All the woman raved about how great a cake it was and how wonderful it was that my husband could bake so well.  Yes, well, I seem to remember that I baked that cake for him, but he was quite happy taking all of the credit for it. Hmmm.  I also served this recently at a brunch at our place on a lazy public holiday.  A large number of people went for a slice of cake ahead of bacon and pancakes. This is unheard of! So it must be good.

Ingredients:

  • 1 ½ cups flour
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • ½ tsp nutmeg
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 3 eggs lightly beaten
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • ½ cup chopped walnuts
  • 1 cup sultanas
  • 230g crushed pineapple pieces
  • 2 cups over ripe bananas (about 4 bananas)

Oven: preheat to 180.C

Method:

Place all of the ingredients into a large bowl.  Mix until just combined.

Pour mixture into a greased cake tin.

Bake for 1 hour or until an inserted skewer comes out clean from the centre of the cake.

Cream cheese Icing:

100g cream cheese

2 cups icing sugar

grated rind and juice of 1 lemon

Soften cream cheese slightly in the microwave, add in icing sugar and lemon rind.  Slowly add in just enough lemon juice until the icing is smooth and a spreadable consistency.

Comments:

I am usually too lazy to sift dry ingredients but I do sift baking soda.  I just hate it when you bite into a bit of cake and you get a lump of baking soda. Yuck! So make sure you do so in this recipe.  This is just a really nice change from your normal banana cake.  It is also a great way to use up bananas and pineappleEspecially as in Singapore we buy pineapple very cheaply.  I must say that canned crushed pineapple is probably best in this recipe but it you can chop the fresh pineapple up really fine it will be just as good. I hate to go on but I have to let you know that the sultanas go really plump and juicy in this cake.  Yum!

Adapted from: Lesley Turner of Queenstown in Sugar and Spice with Jo Seagar.