I bake so there is something in the tins all the time. I tend to rotate, in no particular order, the recipes below.

Please note that some recipes have mls instead of cups. This came about when I reduced the quantities from my larger cafe recipes. Don't get mls (volume) and mgs (weight) mixed up.


anzac biscuits

Anzac Biscuits

ANZAC = Australia & New Zealand Army Corp
Legend has it that Anzac biscuits were developed during the 1st World War for their keeping qualities and their nutritional value (and they actually taste really good!). They were made by the families of Australian and New Zealand troops and sent to them when they were serving overseas.

Pre heat your oven to 150°C / 300°F


1 cup rolled oats
1 cup plain flour
1 cup sugar
¾ cup desiccated coconut
125g butter
2 tablespoons golden syrup
½ teaspoon bicarbonate of soda (baking soda)
1 tablespoon boiling water

In a large bowl add the oats, flour, sugar and coconut. Mix until combined.

In a small pot melt the butter and golden syrup until it is combined.

In a small bowl mix the baking soda and water then add it to the melted butter and syrup. This will froth a bit. Pour the liquid mixture into the dry ingredients and stir to combine.

Butter two oven trays, roll dough into 20g balls and place on the trays. Flatten with a fork heated in hot water and bake for approximately 20 minutes.

The mixture can be a bit crumbly so you may have to push the dough back together a bit when you flatten them. The baking melts the mixture together. They should cool to be quite hard. If they are a bit under cooked they will be softer but still good to eat. Just note it for your next bake.

Note my comments under the heading; Getting to know your oven

Source: pg68 - Australian Women's Weekly "Beautiful Biscuits".

chocolate kisses

Chocolate Kisses

This recipe has been a family favorite for at least three generations. The icing recipe is portioned so it should do all the kisses with very little left over. These kisses are best when they are left out to soften. If you eat one before they soften they are not quite so good, so be patient.


220g butter, softened to room temperature
1 cup White Sugar
2 cups standard grade flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 Tablespoon cocoa
1½ cups coconut
Splash of boiling water to soften the mix


  1. Preheat oven to 180°C / 350°F.
  2. Butter two baking trays.
  3. Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
  4. Sift in the flour, baking powder and cocoa all together.
  5. Add the coconut.
  6. Mix thoroughly adding a little boiling water to soften the mixture when required. The mixture should be dry and firm when finished.
  7. Using a level Tablespoon; measure and portion out onto a buttered baking tray. Roll into balls with your hands then squash flat with a fork heated in hot water.
  8. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes.
  9. Cool on a rack. Sort into pairs then ice together with Chocolate Icing.
    Leave out to soften then store in an airtight container.

Chocolate Icing

2 Tablespoons of soften butter
1 cup icing Sugar
1 Tablespoon cocoa
1 Tablespoon boiling water

Put the chopped up butter into a warmed bowl and mash to a paste. Sift in the icing sugar and cocoa. Add the boiling water and mix. Add a splash more water if required but keep the icing firm.

Makes 26.

highlander biscuits

Highlander Biscuits (Chocolate chip Biscuits)

These biscuits are named after the Highlander Brand of condensed milk. This brand has been a New Zealand favourite for generations and would probably qualify as 'Kiwiana'. This biscuit recipe was often printed on the label.
Pre heat your oven to 175°C / 350°F


Cream together:
225g butter, softened to room temperature
½ cup sugar
Then add:
100ml Highlander condensed milk
2 cups of standard flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
Mix until well combine then add:
Chocolate Chips.

I chop up dark chocolate from a slab 70% cocoa. That way you get a mixture of chocolate sizes through each biscuit from fine almost dust to larger chunks. Use about six segments. Note how much you use and increase or decrease the volume on your next bake according to your taste.

Butter two oven trays, roll dough into 20g balls and place on the trays. Flatten with a fork heated in hot water and bake for approximately 15 minutes.

Note my comments under the heading; Getting to know your oven


slicesAll my slices go into a 200mm x 300mm x 25mm sponge roll tin. I find this a convenient size in that I can cut the slices into 50mm x 50mm squares. After working in a cafe I have a thing about slices being all the same size.

The baking paper is 300mm wide so tear a length off and it can go straight into the tin. Tuck the paper into the corners and hold it in position with clips until the mixture is in place. The clips are then removed.

Leave enough paper each side to be able to hold on to so you can lift the slice out of the tin. The two ends of the tin that do not have paper can be buttered and a knife run long to release the slab.

Preparing biscuit crumbs

The lemon slice and the rocky road have biscuit crumbs. I use super wine biscuits but you can use any plain vanilla biscuits.

Weigh the required weight of biscuits then break the biscuits up roughly into a plastic bag not smaller than A4 paper size. A heavier grade of plastic than a supermarket bag is better for this job. Then use a wooden rolling pin to crush them into crumbs. If you do not have a rolling pin a bottle will work.

ginger crunch

Ginger Crunch

This is the most difficult of my slices to make. Firstly it is baked in the oven; The other two are not, and secondly if the completed slice is not removed from its tin and cut before it cools too much it will be too hard to cut.

The first time I made it at the cafe I left it too long and was unable to cut it with a knife without breaking the base. The tray was three times the size of the one I use at home so I was reluctant to throw it out. The next day I brought my carpenters saw from home, put it through the steriliser, and then cut the slab with that.

Don't let this put you off making it. It is really quite easy.

Preheat oven to 175°C / 350°F


       Ginger Icing
100g butter
200g Icing Sugar
20ml Golden Syrup
2 ½ teaspoons ground ginger
Base ingredients
160g butter, softened to room temperature
145g White Sugar

245g standard grade flour
1 ½ teaspoon Edmonds baking powder
2 teaspoon ground ginger

First prepare the icing ingredients. Put the butter and golden syrup into a small pot and the icing sugar and the ginger in a bowl and put aside.

Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
Sift flour, baking powder and ginger into creamed butter and sugar.
Using your hands knead well in a large bowl. At first this will look as though there is too much flour but the kneading will soon produce dough.
Press the dough into a baking paper lined tray. It is easier if you crumble the dough with your fingers as you put it into the tray. This way you can spread it more evenly then pack it down with something like a spoon or slice. Warm the tool with hot water if it sticks too much.
Bake for 20 minutes in the oven. Cook it until there is just a little browning on the top. Removed it from the oven (it will be soft to touch at this point) and pour the ginger icing over base and spread. Leave to cool.
After about 20 minutes check to see if it is firm enough to remove from the tin and cut into squares. If left too long to cool the base hardens and it is difficult to cut.

Ginger Icing
Start making the icing about 5 minutes before the base is due to come out of the oven.

On a medium heat in a small saucepan melt the butter and golden syrup. Once melted add the icing sugar, and ginger. Stir briskly until all is combined. There will be free melted butter around the bottom of the saucepan. The mixture has to be heated and stirred until this is fully combined. The icing is then ready to pour on to the hot base.

Cut into 50mm squares and store in an air tight container when completely cooled.

lemon slice

Lemon Coconut Slice

This lemon slice is almost as easy as rocky road but it has to be iced. The thing that makes this different than ordinary lemon slice is that I put dried apricots and crystallized ginger into the mix.

To make the base:

In a large bowl add:

330g biscuit crumbs (as described in the "slice" introduction)
Zest of 1 lemon
330ml desiccated coconut
1/3 cup dried diced apricots
1/4 cup diced crystallized ginger
1/3 tsp citric acid

Stir the dry ingredients (including the zest) to combine.

Then melt in a pot :

160ml condensed milk
160g butter
Juice of 1 lemon

Melt the butter first then add the condensed milk on a medium heat stirring
continuously until the butter and condensed milk are fully combined.

lemon slice Add the melted ingredients to the crumb mixture and mix thoroughly.

Tip into a baking paper lined tray, as described in the "slice" introduction, spread evenly, pack it down firmly, and refrigerate until cold. I often leave it over night.

Coconut Topping

Under a grill toast enough desiccated coconut to sprinkle over the icing. This will only take approx 1½ minutes on a medium heat. Watch it as it browns really quickly. When the coconut surface is brown remove from the grill and give it a stir. You should get a white and brown combination of the coconut.

The Icing

Melt in a pot:

45g melted butter
Zest of 1 lemon
juice of 1 lemon
A pinch citrus acid

Mix with enough icing sugar (approx 170g) to make a spreadable icing.

Apply evenly over the base, sprinkle and pat down the toasted coconut and refrigerate until set.

Remove from the tray and cut into 50mm squares. Store in an air tight container in the fridge.

rocky road

Rocky Road

This slice is so easy to make that kids could make it and if you like chocolate then this is for you.

The variation in this recipe is what nuts you would like to put in it. Whichever you choose, roasted nuts have a better flavour so I would recommend you either buy ready roasted or you put a bit of butter in a pan on a medium heat and cook the nuts until golden brown. They need to be regularly tossed or stirred so as to get a good even colour.

I generally use peanuts but any of the more exotic nuts add that extra dimension to this slice.

If you use a large pot to melt the butter and sugar, you can keep adding all the other ingredients without needing to transfer to a mixing bowl.


Melt the butter in a large pot then add the sugar. Heat and stir until the sugar has dissolved.

330g butter
160ml sugar

Then mix in:

85ml cocoa powder
85ml condensed milk
1 teaspoon vanilla essence

Cool slightly then beat in:

1 egg

Then mix in:

330g biscuit crumbs (as described in the "slice" introduction)
85ml coconut
170g (a packet)marshmallows
85ml (more or less to taste)roasted peanuts

Tip into a baking paper lined tray, as described in the "slice" introduction, spread evenly, pack it down firmly, and refrigerate until cold. I often leave it over night.

Remove from the tray and cut into 50mm squares. Store in an air tight container in the fridge.


ginger loaf

Cafe Ginger Loaf

This recipe is a little different than what I was looking for at the time but I am now sold on it. It has diced crystallized ginger which gives it that extra zing!
It makes two loaves, they freeze well so you get two for as much effort as making one. Cut a thin slice off the loaf, butter it and enjoy.

Preheat oven to 180°C / 360°F


2 tablespoons ground ginger
2 teaspoons cinnamon
2 tablespoons cocoa
4 cups standard flour

2 teaspoons bicarbonate of soda (baking soda)
2 cups milk

250g butter, diced
1 cup white sugar
* 1 cup dark brown sugar
* ½ cup golden syrup
2/3 cup crystallized ginger (diced)

* I don't keep a stock of dark brown sugar so I use ordinary brown sugar and add some treacle into the golden syrup, still totalling ½ cup.

Butter two loaf tins.
(My tin sizes are L200mm x W90mm x D70mm and L190mm x W90mm x D55mm.)

Line the base with baking paper. This is important. If you don't the bottom of the loaves may break away when removing them from the tin. You can use the paper the butter is wrapped in for this.

Into a bowl sift the ginger, cinnamon, cocoa and flour. Stir to combine and set aside.
Stir together the soda and milk and set aside.
In a pot melt the butter, sugar and golden syrup over a medium heat stirring until combine.
Add the diced crystallized ginger.
Transfer to a large bowl.
Stir the milk / soda mixture into the melted butter mixture. This will froth a bit.
Now add the dry ingredients whisk thoroughly to remove all the flour lumps.
Pour half the mixture into each of the two tins.

Bake for 50 to 60 minutes or until a skewer exits clean. Rest for a few minutes then turn out of the tins onto a cake rake to cool.

Store in an air tight container or wrap in cling wrap and freeze.

Source: Lifestyle magazine supplement in Waikato Times


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