Wednesday 26 January 2011


In the spirit of Australia Day, I thought I’d share two lamington recipes with you.

The humble Lamington is an Australian icon

~ a sponge cake in the shape of a cuboid, coated in a layer of chocolate icing and desiccated coconut. Lamingtons are sometimes served as two halves with a layer of cream and/or strawberryjam in between.

History :: In the summer of 1886, Lord Lamington, Governor of Queensland took his entourage to Harlaxton House in Toowoomba to escape the steamy heat of Brisbane.

He loved, ‘Snowballs’ – round cakes served with whipped cream. The cook was requested to make a batch for afternoon tea and to the cook’s horror the kitchen was not equipped with round patty tins or cream!
The Cook was creative and made a big cake which she cut into oblongs, iced with chocolate icing and sprinkled with coconut. The guests were enthralled with the new treat. Lady Lamington was asked what the cakes were called.  When told there they had no name, the Guests dubbed them ‘Lord Lamington Cakes’.

Another account was the Lamingtons’ chef at Queensland’s Government House, Armand Gallad, was called upon at short notice to provide something to feed unexpected guests. According to the Melbourne Age newspaper, Gallad cut up some left over French vanilla sponge cake baked the day before, dipped the slices in chocolate and set them in coconut.

Ironically, Lord Lamington was believed to have hated the dessert that had been named in his honour, referring to them as “those bloody poofy woolly biscuits”.


Sponge Cake:
6 eggs
150 g (51/2 oz/2/3 cup) caster (superfine) sugar
200 g (7 oz/12/3 cups) self-raising flour
30 g (1 oz) unsalted butter, melted

Chocolate Icing:
500 g (1 lb 2 oz/4 cups) icing (confectioners’) sugar
200 g (7 oz) dark chocolate, chopped
15 g (1/2 oz) unsalted butter
125 ml (4 fl oz/1/2 cup) milk
375 g (13 oz/4 cups) desiccated coconut

Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F/Gas 4). Lightly grease and line the base of an 18 x 28 cm
(7 x 11 inch) tin with baking paper.

To make the cake, beat the eggs for about 5 minutes with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Gradually add the sugar and continue beating until the mixture is thick and the sugar has dissolved. Sift in the flour and fold in lightly. Add the butter and 3 tablespoons of hot water and stir gently to combine. Pour into the tin and bake for 30 minutes, or until golden. Cool on a wire rack.

To make the chocolate icing, put the sugar, dark chocolate, butter and milk in a heatproof bowl and place over a saucepan of simmering water. Stir constantly until melted and mixed together.

Cut the sponge into 16 squares. Put the coconut in a bowl. Dip each sponge square into the chocolate icing and then in the coconut. Leave on a wire rack to dry completely before serving. Makes 16

{Recipe ~ Totally addicted to taste}

Photographer: Joshua Dasey, Stylist: Margot Braddon

Lamington Angels

Vanilla buttercake:
90g butter, softened
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup (110g) caster sugar
2 eggs
1 cup (150g) self-raising flour
2 tablespoons milk

Chocolate icing:
10g butter
1/3 cup (80ml) milk
2 cups (320g) icing sugar
1/4 cup (25g) cocoa powder

1 cup (80g) desiccated coconut
1/4 cup (100g) raspberry jam
1/2 cup (125ml) thickened cream, whipped


1. Preheat oven to moderate (180°C/160°C fan-forced). Line 6-hole texas or 12-hole standard muffin pan with paper cases.
2. Beat butter, extract, sugar, eggs, flour and milk in small bowl with electric mixer on low speed until ingredients are just combined. Increase speed to medium, beat until mixture is changed to a paler colour.
3. Divide mixture among cases; smooth surface.
4. Bake large cakes about 25 minutes, small cakes about 20 minutes. Turn cakes onto wire rack to cool.
5. Make chocolate icing.
6. Remove cases from cakes. Dip cakes in icing; drain off excess, toss cakes in coconut. Place cakes on wire rack to set.
7. Cut cakes as desired; fill with jam and cream.

Chocolate icing
Melt butter in medium heatproof bowl over medium saucepan of simmering water. Stir in milk and sifted icing sugar and cocoa until icing is a coating consistency.

{Recipe from the Australian Women’s Weekly}


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