Hello Sunshine: Gluten Free Lemon Cake

Oh baby. I had a slice of delicious lemon drizzle cake from Flour and Stone ages ago and became so obsessed with making it at home that I must have gone through half a dozen recipes before I got to one that I was happy with. Its like sunshine in a cake. This is not at all a recreation but just a damn good lemon cake which I think should be a staple in any baker’s repertoire. I mean, look at it…

A True Love of Mine: Gluten Free Lemon Cake

Delicious, moist cake with a super tangy, sugary icing. As if your mouth isn’t watering just thinking about making this. P.s. like how arty I am now? With that little lemon in the shot as well as the cake? Yeah, im a real pro.

Ive re-discovered the Nigella Lawson cookbook How To Be A Domestic Goddess and have a few more recipes coming from her in blog posts to come. And yes, they will come. Now that i’m on holidays and have finished a super stressful (but very rewarding) year, I have lots of time for blogging. Fourth post this month peeps! Yeah!

A True Love of Mine: Gluten Free Lemon Cake

The original recipe just uses normal flour but its such a small percentage of the whole thing that I swapped it with gluten free flour. That way I could make it for my friend’s birthday. I’m still a little wary of the ability of gluten free flour to properly emulate non-gf flour so i’m not quite game to use it in large quantities say for cookie dough or the like. Baby steps for me.

A True Love of Mine: Gluten Free Lemon Cake

As you can see, the cake is super dense so not for the faint of heart. But, for all its density it is wonderfully moist and the tangy icing sets it off beautifully. The best thing about this is that you can adjust the lemon flavour to your liking just by tweaking how much zest and juice you add. Although, I tend to think the more lemon the better. But hey, do what you like! I’m so glad that I re-discovered this baby as there had definitely been a bit of a citrus drought in the old Casa KB and this cake set us back in balance. And a slice counts as a serve of fruit doesn’t it?

So my lovelies, what old favourite have you re-discovered recently?


Hello Sunshine Lemon Cake (adapted from Nigella Lawson’s Damp Lemon and Almond Cake)

Cake Ingredients

225g soft unsalted butter

225g caster sugar

4 eggs

50g plain gluten free flour

225g ground almonds

zest and juice of 2 lemons

Lemon Icing Ingredients

2 cups icing sugar

1 scant tbsp warm water

lemon juice to taste

Cake Method

1. Cream butter and sugar until super super pale

2. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, adding a quarter of the flour after each addition

3. When everything is incorporated, gently stir in the ground almonds and lemon zest and juice

4. Pour mixture into a 20cm round cake tin and bake for roughly an hour at 180 degrees celsius (check after about 40 mins and if the cake is browning too quickly, cover with alfoil)

5. Boom! Moist and delicious cake. Ready for icing when its cooled.

Icing Method

1. Sift icing sugar into a bowl

2. Stir in lemon juice

3. Add the water in small additions until icing had reached desired consistency. You want it thick and lava-like rather than runny. That way it will coat the top of the cake but give you a nice thick layer of zingy icing.

4. Enjoy!

Dark Chocolate Butterscotch Pudding

Its still super freakin cold. In case you didn’t get the memo Sydney peeps. Its the kind of weather that makes you want to have the oven on all the time just to heat the house. The kind of weather that makes you stay in bed until midday, get up for some hot chocolate, then go back to bed. The kind of weather that just requires snuggles. And this pudding.

And butterscotch caramel.

ohhhhhhh butterscotch caramel.

Its no secret that I like Donna Hay recipes. Although I find the magazine a little light on, it is great for simple dishes that work pretty much every time. This recipe came from the June/July 2011 edition of the Donna Hay Magazine but I dug it out the other day when I was sorting through my mountains of cooking magazines. I’m such a sucker for a gooey, sumptuous sweet on the front cover of a magazine. I must be an advertisers dream.

I did originally make this when I bought the magazine last year but it just wasn’t delicious enough to warrant a blog post of its own. I put that down to my own laziness as I couldn’t be bothered making lots of little portions so I just made one big one. That ended up with what seemed to be a lower caramel/pudding ratio. Of which we know no good can come. So this time I made a couple of small changes.

1. I used my kitchen aid! Yay! This baby is seriously the best thing since sliced bread. I love that I can switch it on and leave it to mix and  come back with it all tripled in volume and ready for the next stage.

then I used a whole jar of butterscotch spread

is there a more delicious sight than that?

No? Glad we’re on the same page here.

The mixture was much lighter and more aerated after using the kitchenaid rather than just my normal hand mixer. Look at those little clouds of cocoa!

so light that the cooked little cocoa caps just pop up off the top of the ramekin.

Juuuust enough for some caramel butterscotch to peek out

And that isn’t even the best part. Don’t believe me?

the molten pool of caramel butterscotch at the bottom is the best part

you can dip the crunchy/fluffy chocolate pudding top back into the butterscotch for extra deliciousness

or if you’re EXTRA fancy you can top it all off with a scoop of ice-cream.

Damn straight.

So what do you think my lovelies? Can there ever be too much when it comes to butterscotch and chocolate? Hint: if you say yes, then I have no idea how you made it this far…

Dark Chocolate Butterscotch Pudding – Adapted from the June/July 2011 Issue of Donna Hay Magazine


1 jar Butterscotch spread (I bought mine from Dijons Castle Hill and Harris Farm Broadway)

1/3 cup (80ml) thickened cream

200g dark chocolate

60g butter

3 eggs

1/2 cup (90g) brown sugar

1 tsp vanilla extract

1/2 cup (60g) almond meal

optional: ice cream to serve


1. Place the butterscotch in a bowl with the cream and mix well until combined

2. Spoon the butterscotch mixture into the bottom of 6 1/2 cup capacity ramekins

3. Melt the chocolate and butter together and mix until combined

4. Place the eggs, sugar and vanilla in the bowl of an electric mixer and beat on high for 8-10 mins or until the mixture has doubled in size

5. Fold in the chocolate mixture and almond meal then divide the mix between the ramekins

6. place the ramekins on a baking tray and cook at 200 degrees celsius for 12-18 minutes or until risen

7. Stand for a few minutes then top with a scoop of your favourite ice cream!

Cake Pops – A class with Stick It! Bakery

In case you missed the memo… right now it’s all about the cake pops.

I’ve always been in awe of bakers like Bakerella who can churn out these delightfully creative and dainty delicacies. I can do a little bit of decorating when I can be bothered, but i’m finding that with an ever increasing workload I just don’t have the time I used to have to do these fiddly recipes. So cake pops got put on the back burner for years. A little bit like macarons did up until recently when I conquered my fear of them. But, in the spirit of trying new things, I decided to have a crack at cake pops. And who better to guide me through this challenge, than my good friend Jen from Stick It! Bakery. Jen makes these beauties in so many different styles and flavours that I have no idea which would be my favourite. Perhaps the packman ones? Or the ninjas? Or the lego heads? Or the cute little bobble men from Despicable Me? HOW CAN I CHOOSE?! So we started with the basics.

first you need to make a cake, let it cool and then break it into chunks in a large bowl

ours was chocolate.


Didn’t think so.

then you use your little fingers to crumble the cake into little crumbs

I really liked this part.

then you mix in enough chocolate icing to make it stick together in a big lump.

Also a favourite part of mine!

then you get a little lump of cake, not too big or too small (just nicely fitting in the palm of your hand)

and roll it into a ball

just like these babies

then you need to get all your bits and pieces together

and melt your chocolate

dip the top of each stick into your chocolate and insert about 3/4 of the way into your cake ball

the chocolate helps the stick to stay in place and stop your cake from falling off and rolling away

then you need to melt up some more chocolate

Jen uses a mug as you need something deep enough for you to dip the whole cake ball into it as week as a little bit of the stick.


the first coat of chocolate!

You need to dip the whole cake ball in then hold it at a 45 degree angle and spin it slowly to allow the excess chocolate to drop off the ball and run a little bit of the way down the lollypop. This will again help the cake stick to the pop and not fall off or roll away.

unless you’re an octopus, you’ll need something to stand your pops up in while they dry.

These florists blocks work a treat.

And look at all those holes. That girl must have made thousands of cake pops!

After the first coat is dry, you need to dip your cake pops back in the chocolate for a second coat.

This is when you can apply any extra sprinkles or sparkles that you want to add.

Here we put sugar pearls in a saucer then firmly pressed the top of the cake pop into them.

and voila! Cuteness!

we also added sugar hearts both (big and small) and sugar flowers and sprinkles

Aren’t they pretty?

This was a fun activity and I kept thinking how great it would be to do this with a group of friends. I had my own private class with Jen but she does group classes and has a range of different styles of cake pops that she can teach you how to make. She even makes naughty ones for hens nights! Now I might be the lamest person alive, but I can see that being the perfect warm up for a ripper hens night…

So there is no recipe to go with this post, I couldn’t give away the secrets of Jen’s delicious chocolate cake pops. You will just have to book a class and find out for yourself! Hopefully though, the pictures and instructions will help you if you decide to brave it on your own.

And finally, a giant THANKYOU to Jen for putting up with me for the day, and teaching me the basics with so much patience and care that I feel I might be able to tackle these babies alone next time. Perhaps…

Comforting Rhubarb Cinnamon Cake and the onset of Christmas

Sometimes I think that the following confession makes me quite un-Australian. But I cannot change the way I feel, I just really love Winter. Summer is nice and I like to go to the beach and spend time outside just as much as the next person but there is something so snuggly about winter that makes it my favourite season. I love winter pjamas, flannel sheets, hot chocolate, reading in bed on a blustery, rainy morning, roast dinners, open fires, winter wardrobes, is there anything not to love? I have spent christmas in the european winter a few times now and I love that you can eat all the traditional food and its not stinking hot. I mostly love that I can cook whatever I want whenever I want because it’s never too hot to have the oven on.  So im not particularly put out by this crazy change in the weather we are currently experiencing in Sydney as it makes the putting up of decorations and the cooking of christmas treats much less sweaty. And so, my lovelies, I put the oven on today, this cold and rainy day in DECEMBER… and made this

Stephanie Alexanders’ Rhubarb Cinnamon Cake

The recipe was astonishingly simple with no need to stew or pre-cook the rhubarb. The yield was one family size delicious cakey/puddingy dessert with tangy sweet rhubarb, fragrant cinnamon and lots of crunchy munchy topping. Just the thing to eat with a cup of tea while watching Love Actually (lets face it, it really is time to break out the Christmas movies).


All you do is start with some ruby red rhubarb stalks

Chop them up. I think the chopping is quite theraputic

See, the red and green of the rhubarb marks the onset of the festive season. In fact you might want to bust out some of your christmas cds to listen to while cooking this

Whiz your cake batter in the food processor. Look! It matches the stand mixer from my last post 😀 hooray! And it’s red… see… christmas….

Stir through the rhubarb pieces and dump it all in a cake pan

And not too long after you can pop this baby out

Perfect delicious crispy crunchy top, and moist crumb with flecks of deep pink rhubarb.


Just a step up from a plain old tea cake, the cinnamon addition gives it a bit more depth and the rhubarb adds colour and texture. You could probably cook it a bit longer to get it firmer in the middle but I love it more moist and pudding like. A super easy way to warm you up on a cold Summer winter day. I defy you to eat this cake and not feel comforted and cuddled. So, my lovelies, what do you like to cook/eat to warm you up when you are cold and feeling miserable?

Rhubarb and Cinnamon Cake from The Cook’s Companion by Stephanie Alexander


80 g unsalted butter

300g plain flour

380g brown sugar

2 eggs

a few drops of vanilla essence

1 tsp salt

1 tsp bi carb soda

1 tsp ground cinnamon

grated zest of 1 lemon

1 cup sour cream

400g rhubarb (cut into 1 cm pieces)

1/4 cup brown sugar (for the topping)

1 tsp ground cinnamon (for the topping)


1. Mix together the butter and sugar

2. add the eggs and vanilla

3. sift together the flour, salt, bi carb and cinnamon then add to the food processor and pulse a few times to combine

4. Add the lemon zest and sour cream then transfer to a large bowl and stir in the rhubarb

5. pour into a 24 cm round tin that has been greased and lined with paper

6. Mix together the brown sugar and cinnamon and sprinkle evenly over the top of the cake

7. Bake at 180 degrees celsius for 1 1/4 hours or until a skewer inserted comes out clean