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apple cake




apple tea cake 011fixW


1 x green apple, peeled, cored

2 cups cream wine

2 Tbls cumquat zest, julienne (you can use mandarin or orange zest)

1 x cinnamon quill

1/2 x caster sugar

150 g almond meal

1/4 cup plain flour (sifted)

150 g butter,chopped,softened

3 x eggs

2 Tbls orange marmalade

200 ml boiling water



1. Place wine, cinnamon, apple, 1tbs. cumquat zest and the liquid in a small saucepan. Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Cover the surface with a round piece of baking paper and cook for 30-40 minutes or until the apple is tender. Cool in poaching liquid. Reserve 1 cup of the poaching liquid. Slice the apple thinly. Set aside until needed.

2. Preheat oven to 150 degrees Celsius. Lightly grease 6x150ml metal moulds or ramekins. Using an electric mixer, beat butter and sugar until pale and creamy. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add flour and 1 tbs. of the poaching liquid and beat for 5 seconds (mixture may look curdled at this stage). Stir in almond meal and half of the sliced apple and mix well.

3. Divide mixture among moulds. Using the back of spoon, smooth the top of the mixture. Gently place apple slices, slightly overlapping and pressing in slightly onto the top of each cake. Transfer to an oven tray and bake for 40-50 minutes or until a skewer inserted comes out clean. Place on a wire rack for 5 minutes to cool slightly.

4. To make the cumquat glaze, place the reserved poaching liquid, marmalade and cumquat in a small saucepan. Bring to a simmer over medium heat and cook for 5-8 minutes or until syrupy. Cool slightly.

5. Turn out cakes onto serving plates. Drizzle with cumquat syrup and dust with icing sugar. Serve with cream.


This recipe got me into the Dilmah Real High Tea Challenge (2013) state finals and earned a silver medal. It was one of the most amazing experience!

black rice puddingW (2)


1/2 cup black rice

1/2 cup white glutinous rice

1 x pandan leaf (tied in a knot)

100 g palm sugar, grated

1 x cinnamon stick



1. Soak the black rice in water and cover for at least 2 hours. Add the white glutinous rice for the last 30 minutes, leaving it in the same water. Do not throw out the water the rice has been soaking in.

2. Transfer to a large saucepan and add extra water so that it covers the rice by 10cm (a rice cooker is not suitable).

3. Boil the rice with the pandan leaf and cinnamon stick until most of the water has evaporated and it is soft enough to eat. Stir in the palm sugar and a pinch of sea salt. Simmer over low heat until the sugar has dissolved and the mixture is thick and glossy. Remove the cinnamon stick and check the sweetness.

To serve: Spoon the pudding into bowls and top with coconut milk, fruit and ice cream.

Bubur Injin ~ Black Rice Pudding ~ I learned this recipe when I visited Bali. This famous pudding is mainly eaten as an afternoon or evening snack. It’s great with ice cram.

banana spring rolls 006fixW 1x1W


1 x 20 packet spring roll pastry

5 x semi-ripe bananas, peeled

1/3 cup jackfruit, shredded (optional)

1/4 cup low g.i. cane sugar or brown sugar

1/4 cup rice bran oil or vegetable oil



1. Cut bananas in halves and slice in the middle (you should have 20 slices). Place pastry on a clean working surface. Place a slice of banana and jackfruit then sprinkle with a little bit of sugar. Fold the pastry over the banana tightly to form a parcel, folding in the edges. Brush the pastry edges with water or a lightly beaten egg and press to seal. Sprinkle a little sugar on top. Repeat with the remaining pastry sheets, banana and jackfruit.

2. Heat oil in a large frying pan on medium-high heat. Cook the banana spring rolls for 2-3 minutes, both sides, until golden and the sugar is caramelized.

Note: You can buy jackfruit in cans in Asian grocery stores and some supermarkets.

puto 005w


3 cups self-raising flour

1 1/2 cups raw sugar or caster sugar

2 cups milk

1 tbs butter or margarine, melted, cooled

1 tsp. vanilla essence

1/4 tsp yellow food coloring, optional



1. Line muffin tins with paper cases. Place flour, sugar, milk and butter in a large bowl. Using an electric mixer, beat on slow speed then increase to high speed until combined. Stir in food coloring.

2. Fill muffin pans up to three-quarters full with mixture. (you can use Multix patty pans if you don’t have a large steamer) Steam the muffins for 12-15 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean. Serve warm with butter.


Makes approximately 16

STEAMED MUFFINS ~ We call them “PUTO” in the Philippines. This is a slight modification of my dad’s unwritten recipe. They are my favorite afternoon snacks. I like to serve them warm with butter.

creme de menthe 020lrW (2)


150 g organic dark cooking chocolate

1/2 cup thickened cream

1/2 cup milk

1/4 cup caster sugar

2 tspn gelatine powder

1/2 tspn vanilla bean paste

2 Tbls creme de menthe (for the bottom layer)

2 Tbls caster sugar (for the bottom layer)

300 ml water (for the bottom layer)

2 tspn gelatine powder (for the bottom layer)

1/4 cup hot water



1. To make the bottom layer, combine water, sugar and crème de menthe in jug. Sprinkle gelatine over the boiling water in a small heatproof bowl or cup. Stir until dissolve. Cool slightly and stir into the crème de menthe mixture. Strain the mixture and divide among glasses and place in the refrigerator for 1 hour or until set.

2. Place cream in a medium saucepan and cook on low heat until just warm (do not boil). Add chocolate and stir until the chocolate melts. Stir in the milk, sugar and vanilla bean paste. Cook, stirring for 5 minutes until the mixture is smooth and the sugar is dissolved. Sprinkle gelatine powder and stir until combined. Strain the chocolate mixture. Set aside to cool to room temperature. Divide mixture among the prepared glasses. Place in the refrigerator for 2 hours or until set. Garnish with chocolate shapes.

Note: To make the chocolate shapes, melt 80g of white chocolate in the microwave on high. Sprinkle 2 tsps. of green powder food coloring. Mix until combined. Cool. Place chocolate in a piping bag. Line a tray with baking paper and pipe shapes onto the baking paper. Place in the refrigerator or freezer to set.