'Ode To Anzac' Cake
For me, the humble Anzac biscuit is the epitome of comfort. This buttery, sweet, crunchy yet still slightly chewy biscuit, alongside a cup of milky earl grey is the perfect Down Under afternoon tea, and I really respect that. The special place the biscuit holds here in New Zealand inspired me to put my own spin on things, using an idea from the very first Anzac recipe published in St Andrew’s Cookery Book in Dunedin in 1915. It was an Anzac cake, not a biscuit.
FOR THE BISCUIT CRUMBLE:
40g rolled oats
40g desiccated coconut
50g spelt flour
30g brown sugar
Pinch of sea salt
1 tbsp golden syrup
1 tsp baking soda
FOR THE CAKE:
150g butter, softened
100g caster sugar
50ml golden syrup
1 tsp vanilla extract
3 organic eggs
50g spelt flour or regular flour
50g quick cook oats
50g fine desiccated coconut
100g ground almonds
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
Pinch sea salt
1/2 cup whole milk
FOR THE GOLDEN SYRUP ICING:
200g cream cheese
3 tbsp golden syrup
1 tsp vanilla extract with seeds
- Preheat the oven to 180C fan bake. Line a baking tray with baking paper.
- First, make the biscuit crumble. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the oats, coconut, flour, sugar and salt and mix together.
- Melt the butter in a small pan and stir in the golden syrup. Add the baking soda to 2 tbsp boiling water, then stir into the golden syrup and butter mixture.
- While the mixer is on low speed, gradually add the golden syrup butter mixture to it. Stop the mixer once everything is well combined, being careful not to over mix.
- With the help of a tablespoon, create golf ball sized balls of the dough and place each one on the tray with plenty of room between them. Using your palm press out each ball of dough down firmly to approximately 0.5cm thickness.
- Place the biscuits in the oven. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until golden and crunchy. Set the tray aside to cool.
- Meanwhile, make the cake. Line 1 x 22cm tin with baking paper.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream the butter, sugar and golden syrup until pale, light and fluffy.
- Add the vanilla and then the eggs. Continue beating until well combined.
- Next, add in the flour, oats, ground almonds, baking powder, spices and salt and mix until just combined. Fold through your milk and stop the mixer once combined. By hand, stir through the sultanas.
- Spoon the batter into the tin and spread out to the sides.
- Bake for approximately 40 minutes or until golden in colour, springy to the touch and a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean. Allow the cake to cool for 10 minutes before turning out onto a cooling rack.
- Meanwhile make the icing. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the cream cheese by itself until completely smooth. Add in the golden syrup and vanilla and mix until combined.
- Once the cake is completely cool, spread a layer of icing onto it. Drizzle with extra golden syrup if desired.
- Break up the Anzac biscuit into chunks and scatter them over the cake.
- Serve at room temperature. Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 3 days.