Bringing real baking into your home with deliciously simple recipes.
Prep 20minBake 35-40 minMakes 8 serves
Rhubarb and pear make wonderful partners and when teamed with a coconut and macadamia nut crumble topping in this dessert it brings sunshine to the table. The coconut sugar lends a lovely rich caramel flavour but can be replaced by brown sugar if you wish.
1 bunch rhubarb, trimmed and cut into 4cm lengths (you should have about 500g trimmed and chopped rhubarb) 750g (about 4) firm ripe pears (such as Josephine, Williams or Packhams) 2 tablespoons coconut or brown sugar Coconut or Greek-style yoghurt, to serve
Crumble Topping 50g (½ cup) rolled oats 30g (½ cup) flaked coconut 55g (⅓ cup) macadamia nuts, coarsely chopped 50g coconut or brown sugar 2 tablespoons LSA (ground linseeds, sunflower seeds and almonds) 1½ teaspoons ground cinnamon 60ml (¼ cup ) sunflower or light olive oil ½ teaspoons natural vanilla essence or extract
Preheat the oven to 180ºC (160°C fan-forced).
To make the Crumble Topping, place oats, flaked coconut, macadamias, sugar, LSA and cinnamon in a bowl, mix to combine. Combine the oil and vanilla, drizzle over the oat mixture and toss to combine evenly. Set aside.
Peel, quarter and core the pears and then cut each quarter lengthwise into three slices. Place the pear slices, rhubarb and sugar in a large bowl and toss gently to combine. Transfer to a 1.5 litre (6 cup) ovenproof dish. Sprinkle with the Crumble Topping.
Bake in preheated oven for 35-40 minutes until the crumble is crisp and golden and the fruit is tender when tested with a skewer.
Serve warm or at room temperature with the coconut yoghurt.
Store any leftover crumble in the ovenproof dish covered with plastic wrap or in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days. Serve cold or reheat in an oven preheated to 180°C (160°C fan-forced) for 10-15 minutes or until heated through.
This crumble can also be baked in eight 185ml (¾ cup) ramekins or ovenproof dishes at 180°C (160°C fan-forced) for 25-30 minutes.
This is one of my favourite cakes – ever! Not only is it super easy to whip up and can be made with a whole variety of different fruits (you can replace the pears with the same quantity of plums, firm ripe nectarines or peaches for example), but it is also incredibly versatile when it comes to serving it. It not only makes for the perfect morning or afternoon tea cake but it is also wonderful served warm with lashings of cream or ice cream for dessert. I’ve also been known to eat the leftovers for breakfast (which I would also highly recommend!)
Melted butter, to grease 185g (1¼ cups) self-raising flour 165g (⅔ cup, firmly packed) brown or raw caster sugar, plus 1 tablespoon extra 125g salted butter, at room temperature 85g (⅓ cup) sour cream 2 eggs, at room temperature 1½ teaspoons natural vanilla extract or essence 2 (about 200g each) firm but ripe Williams pears, cored and each cut into 12 wedges Icing sugar, to dust Cream or ice cream, to serve (optional)
Preheat oven to 170°C/340°F (150°C/300°F fan-forced). Grease a 21cm (8 1⁄4in), base measurement, springform tin with melted butter and line the base with non-stick baking paper.
To make the Crumble Topping, combine the flour, sugar, and cinnamon in a medium bowl. Use your fingertips to quickly rub in the butter just until the mixture resembles coarse breadcrumbs (it will be quite moist). Stir in the almonds. Cover and put in the fridge while making the cake.
To make the cake, place the flour, sugar, butter, sour cream, eggs and vanilla in a large mixing bowl. Use an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment to beat on low speed until combined. Increase the speed to high and beat for 3 minutes or until the mixture is well combined, very pale in colour and silky smooth in texture. Spoon the mixture into the prepared tin and smooth the surface with the back of a spoon.
Toss the pear wedges with the extra 1 tablespoon sugar. Arrange the pears evenly over the top of the cake and then press gently into the batter. Sprinkle with the prepared Crumble Topping to cover.
Bake in preheated oven for 65-75 minutes (the baking time will depend on how juicy the pears are) or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Stand the cake in the tin for 5 minutes before transferring, still on the base of the tin, to a wire rack. Serve warm or at room temperature on its own or accompanied by cream or ice cream, if desired.
Prep 20min (+1hr 30min cooling time)Bake 60-65minMakes about 20
This is the way the best classic chocolate brownies should be - fudgy but not too dense, rich but not too sweet. These ones are also studded with maple-encrusted roasted pecans to for an added welcome surprise!
Melted butter, to grease 250g good-quality dark chocolate (45-54 per cent cocoa), chopped 185g salted butter, cubed 3 eggs, at room temperature 220g (1 cup, firmly packed) brown sugar 1 teaspoon natural vanilla extract or essence 110g (¾ cup) plain flour 30g (¼ cup) Dutch cocoa powder ½ teaspoon baking powder Cocoa powder or icing sugar, to dust (optional)
Maple-Roasted Pecans 180g pecans 60ml (¼ cup) maple syrup ½ teaspoon sea salt flakes
To make the Maple-Roasted Pecans, preheat the oven to 180°C (160°C fan-forced). Line an oven tray with sides with non-stick baking paper. Place the pecans, maple syrup and salt in a medium bowl and toss to combine. Spread the pecans in one layer on the oven tray and pour over any maple syrup left in the bowl. Cook in preheated oven for 12-15 minutes, stirring often, until toasted and the maple syrup has thickened to a sticky consistency. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool completely on the tray. Once cool, coarsely chop the pecans.
Reduce the oven temperature to 160°C (140°C fan-forced). Grease a 16cm x 26cm shallow slice tin and line the base and long sides with one piece of baking paper.
Place the dark chocolate and butter in a medium heatproof bowl over a saucepan of simmering water (don’t let the base of the bowl touch the water). Stir occasionally until chocolate and butter melt and the mixture is smooth. Remove the bowl from saucepan and set aside to cool to room temperature.
Use an electric mixture with a whisk attachment to whisk the eggs, sugar and vanilla until thick and pale. Add the cooled chocolate and whisk until just combined.
Sift together the flour, cocoa powder and baking powder. Add to chocolate mixture and whisk on low speed until just combined. Add the chopped pecans to the chocolate mixture, breaking them up if they have started to stick together, and use a spatula to fold until evenly combined.
Pour the mixture into the prepared tin and spread evenly. Bake in preheated oven for 45-55 minutes or until moist crumbs cling to a skewer inserted in the centre. Remove from the oven and cool in tin on a wire rack (this will take about 1½ hours).
Remove brownie from the tin using the baking paper to lift it out. Cut into portions and dust with cocoa powder or icing sugar, if desired, to serve.
These brownies will keep in an airtight container at room temperature (in a cool spot), for up to 5 days. Serve at room temperature.
Prep 20minBake 15-25 minMakes about 12 large cookies
This great basic cookie recipe (requiring only a bowl and a wooden spoon to mix) can be customised depending on your flavour and texture preferences… Choose from the suggested ingredients to add your twist and to personalise the cookies – the variation options are only limited by your imagination (and a little baking science)!
Base 125g salted butter, melted 110g (½ cup) caster sugar 110g (½ cup, firmly packed) brown sugar 1 egg 185g-225g plain flour (see Baker's Tips) ½ teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
Ingredients for flavour (choose at least 1) 1-2 teaspoons vanilla essence or extract or vanilla bean paste ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon 1 orange, lemon or lime, zest finely grated Sea salt flakes, to taste
Ingredients for texture (choose at least 1) 100g chocolate (dark, milk, white or a combination) – 150g if not using nuts also 100g toasted nuts (macadamias, pecans, salted peanuts, peeled hazelnuts, almonds, walnuts or pistachios), coarsely chopped 150g Smarties or M&M's 100g soft caramels, chopped 1 cup shredded or flaked coconut
Preheat oven to 180°C (160°C fan-forced). Line a large oven tray with non-stick baking paper.
Combine the butter, caster sugar and brown sugar in a medium bowl and beat with a wooden spoon until smooth and well combined. Add the egg (and vanilla and/or citrus zest if using) and beat with the wooden spoon until the mixture becomes pale, creamy and thickens slightly (this will take 1-2 minutes).
Sift together the flour (see Baker’s Tips) and bicarbonate of soda (and cinnamon if using). Add to the butter mixture and stir until well combined. Add the chocolate, nuts, Smarties, M&M's and/or caramels and stir to combine evenly.
Roll 2 level tablespoonfuls (see Baker's Tips) of the cookie dough into balls and place on the lined oven tray about 10cm apart (see Baker's Tips).
Bake in preheated oven for 5 minutes. Lift the baking tray on one side and let it fall back onto the oven rack 3 times (see Baker’s Tips). Sprinkle with coconut or finely chopped nuts if using. Bake for 5 minutes longer then lift the baking tray on one side and let it fall back onto the oven rack 3 times again. Bake for a further 5-15 minutes (see Baker’s Tips).
Cool the cookies on the trays for 5 minutes or until firm enough to transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Repeat with the remaining cookie dough.
Using less flour (185g) will mean that your cookies will spread more and be thinner than if you use more flour (225g).
To bake smaller cookies, roll 1 tablespoon measure of dough into balls and place on the oven trays at least 7cm apart. Bake as per recipe.
You can use a small ice-cream scoop to scoop your cookie dough and place it straight onto the oven trays but you will find the cookies will be more evenly shaped if rolled before baking.
Chilling the balls of dough for 30 minutes before baking will give your cookies more contrast in texture between the centre and the outer edge.
Banging the trays on the oven racks during baking will give the cookies a ‘crinkled’ appearance once baked and will also be thinner than those that aren’t.
You can determine the texture of these cookies by adjusting the baking time. 15 minutes will give you a cookie with a soft, chewy centre and crisp outer; 20 minutes will give you a slightly soft centre and crisp outer; while 25 minutes will mean the cookies are crisp all the way through.
These cookies will keep in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 week.
If you are looking for a quick, easy, impressive, and not to mention delicious, cake, this is the one. Lots of clever shortcuts (like using your food processor to make it) means that this cake will be in the oven in less than 10 minutes!
Melted butter, to grease
100g (3½oz) chilled unsalted butter, cubed
110g (½ cup/4oz) caster sugar
75g (¾ cup/2¾oz) almond meal
75g (½ cup/2¾oz) plain flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 eggs, at room temperature
1 teaspoon natural vanilla essence or extract
150g (5¼oz) fresh or frozen raspberries
25g (¼ cup/¾oz) flaked almonds
Icing sugar, to dust
Preheat oven to 180°C/350°F (160°C/315°F fan-forced). Grease a 20cm/8in springform (base measurement) with the melted butter and then line the base with a piece of baking paper.
Put the butter, sugar, almond meal, flour and baking powder in the bowl of a food processor. Process until well evenly combined and the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Add the eggs and vanilla use the pulse button to process until smooth and just combined.
Spoon the mixture into the prepared pan and smooth the surface with the back of a spoon. Sprinkle evenly with the raspberries and then use the back of a clean spoon to press the raspberries into the cake mixture. Sprinkle with the almonds.
Bake in preheated oven for 35-40 minutes or until golden and cooked in the centre when tested with a skewer.
Stand the cake in the pan for 5 minutes before removing the side of the pan and placing the cake (still on the base) on a wire rack. Serve warm or at room temperature dusted with icing sugar.
The raspberries can be replaced with 150g (5¼oz) blueberries or quartered strawberries.
For a nut-free version, the almond meal can be replaced with 75g (2¾oz) desiccated coconut and sprinkle with 25g (¼ cup/¾oz) flaked coconut.
This cake will keep in an airtight container in a cool spot (but not in the fridge) for up to 3 days.