French Apple Frangipane Tart

A most delicious fresh apple tart with made with a base of sweet shortcrust pastry and a layer of a deliciously moist almond frangipane and then topped with tart brandied granny smith apples. I always delight in the use of my vintage apple peeler which before 1864, no machine or mechanical aid was heard of that would allow a kitchen worker or farm wife to peel apples quickly, this tedious task was then performed by hand with a knife. This soon changed with the labor-saving device invented by David Harvey Goodell, a man who later became the governor of New Hampshire. He called his first invention “the Lightning apple parer.” At first, a New York firm’s marketing efforts sold only 2,400 over 2 years. Dissatisfied with the outcome, David Goodell took to the road and became a traveling salesman. In less than a month, he sold 24,000 apple parers. Such a lovely story!


Sweet shortcrust pastry

240g cake flour
120g castor sugar
pinch salt
120g cold butter, cut into bits
3 egg yolks

  1. Blend the flour, sugar and salt. Cut in the cold butter with a pastry cutter or fork until the mixture resembles a coarse meal with bits of butter no larger than peas. (Alternatively, you can process the mixture on pulse mode in a food processor.)
    Add the egg yolks, and continue blending with the pastry cutter (or on pulse mode in the processor) until the eggs are evenly incorporated and the mixture resembles  fine breadcrumbs, gently press together to form a smooth ball.
  2. Divide the dough in half and flatten each portion into a smooth disc. Wrap with plastic, and chill in the fridge for at least 2 hours, or overnight if you prefer. The dough may also be frozen for up to two months.
  3. Remove the chilled dough from the fridge, and allow to rest at room temperature for 15 to 30 minutes. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough. Lift and turn the dough as you work, keeping the work surface dusted with flour to prevent sticking. Fit the dough into a tart pan or a 22 cm flan ring and press it firmly against the sides and bottom without stretching it. Trim off any excess dough and then cover and chill the dough in the pan for at least 30 minutes before filling and baking.

Apple topping

5 Granny Smith apples or any tart cooking apples
80 grams castor sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 Tblsp Calvados brandy
a squeeze of lemon

  1. Peel, core, quarter and slice apples into thin slices.
  2. Toss cut apples in sugar, cinnamon,calvados and brandy, cover until ready to use.


120 g butter
120g castor sugar
2 eggs
120 g ground almonds
30g cake flour
1/2 teaspoon almond essence

  1. Beat the butter, vanilla seeds and sugar together in a bowl until pale and fluffy.
    Crack in the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition, until all of the eggs have been fully incorporated into the mixture. Fold in the ground almonds and flour carefully by hand, add essence.
  2. Top the pastry case with the almond mixture and smooth to the edges, then top with 2 layers of brandied apples in concentric circles then dust with icing sugar which will help to caramelise the apples during baking.
  3. Bake tart in a 180 degrees preheated oven for 30-35 minutes, or until the filling has risen, and apples are pale golden brown and caramelised ontop and when frangipane is cooked through.
  4. Dredge with icing sugar and serve with chantilly cream.




Delicious lamingtons, made from squares of sponge cake coated in a layer of chocolate sauce and then rolled in desiccated coconut. This cake was an accident at work by a maid-servant to Lord Lamington who accidentally dropped the Governor’s favorite sponge cake into some melted chocolate.

1 1/2 cups cake flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
8 eggs
1 cup caster sugar
200 grams melted butter

1.Sift flour and baking powder together at least 3 times to incorporate as much air into the flour as possible. Using an electric mixer beat the eggs and sugar together until light and fluffy and pale in colour and tripled in volume.
2.Sift the flour over the egg and sugar mixture and gently fold through using a large metal spoon until all the flours are incorporated.Lastly fold through melted butter.
3.Pour into prepared tins.

For the tin preperation
1.Line the base of 2 x 20cm square tins with baking paper.
2.Cool and then cut into even 6cm squares.

Oven temperature
Bake at 180 degrees C for about 25 minutes or until springy to touch or when tested clean with a cake skewer.

For the chocolate coating
3 cups sifted icing sugar
3/4 cup sifted cocoa powder
1 cup boiling water
1/4 cup milk
75 grams butter melted
Dessicated coconut to coat

1.Mix together icing sugar,cocoa,water,milk and extra butter in a large bowl.
2.Place coconut in a separate bowl.
3.Roll each square of sponge quickly into the chocolate sauce mixture with the help of a large slotted spoon and then quickly again into the desiccated coconut.
4.Refrigerate until set.

Makes 18

Happy baking!


Sour Cream Pecan Loaf

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This simple light and moist loaf with a crunchy sugary nutty topping I love making for a quick teatime treat.

250 ml sour cream
5 ml bicarb of soda
125 grams butter
500 ml cake flour
2 ex-large eggs
5 ml vanilla paste
10 ml baking powder

60 ml soft brown sugar
5 ml ground cinnamon
1/2 cup chopped pecan nuts

For the mixture
1-Mix sour cream and bicarb of soda in a bowl. Set aside.
2-Cream butter and sugar and add eggs and vanilla and beat well unit light and fluffy.
3-Stir in the sifted dry ingredients.Mix by hand until flours are folded through.
4-Spoon half of the mixture into prepared tin and sprinkle with half the topping ingredients,then spoon the balance of mixture and remainder topping.

For the topping
1-Mix all ingredients together. Set aside.

Tin preparation
1-Line the base of a loaf tin with baking paper as well as spray sides with baking paper.
2-Bake at 180 degrees C for 35 minutes or until when tested clean with a cake skewer.

What I love
To add a handful of blueberries in each of the topping layers.

Happy baking!





My Panettone freshly baked, soft and scrumptious! A lovely story: Once upon a time,a Milanese baker named Toni fell in love with a very beautiful women who walked past his bakery every day.The baker, determined to create a magnificent bread to tempt her inside, laboured for six months and finally created a tall, domed loaf that lured her in. But when their eyes met, he fell out of love with her. However, his toils were not in vain,his new creation, called Pan di Toni (“Toni’s bread”) eventually corrupted to Panettone- renowned throughout Italy.

2 1/2 tsp dried yeast
300 ml tepid milk
350 grams plain flour
1/2 tsp salt
100 grams butter softened
2 egg yolks
60 grams caster sugar
80 grams citrus peel
50 grams sultanas
pinch nutmeg
zest of 1 lemon and 1 orange grated
1 tsp vanilla paste
glaze made with 1 egg yolk beaten
icing sugar to decorate

Tin preperation and baking time
Spray a round deep 20 cm pan with cooking spray and bake for about 45 minutes until tested clean with a cake skewer.

For the dough
1- Sprinkle the yeast of over the warm milk and leave for 5 minutes stir to dissolve.
2-Mix the flour and salt together in a large bowl and make a well in the centre pour in the yeasted milk.
3-Mix enough flour into the well to form a paste with just some of the flour and leave for 20 minutes until its frothy and risen.
4-Now mix in balance of flour to form a soft kneadable dough, knead for 10 minutes.(If the dough is on the stiff side please add a little more milk but be careful of adding too much!)
5-Oil a large bowl on the inside and place the kneaded dough into this and cover with cling film until it doubles in size. I find the sun is best but you will need to watch it closely.
6-Knock dough back then add the softened butter, egg yolks, sugar, citrus peel, sultanas, nutmeg,lemon and orange zests, and vanilla extract until combined for above 5 minutes.
7- Shape dough into a round loaf and place into prepared tin covered with cling film and leave to double in size.
8- Brush loaf with egg glaze and bake as above.
9-Remove from the mould when cool and dredge top with sieved icing sugar.
Happy baking!


Upside down banana cake


This delicious caramel and banana topped cake needs to be eaten the day its made to look its most beautiful. Served while warm is heavenly.

180 grams self raising flour
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
1 ripe banana
2 tblsp sour cream
2 eggs
180 grams caster sugar
90 grams butter at room temperature
1 tsp vanilla

Caramel topping
60 grams butter
3/4 cup brown sugar
4-5 just ripe bananas

For the tin preparation
1-Melt butter in a pan add brown sugar and cook until the sugar is totally melted and has a caramel colour to it, the butter will seperate out so don’t be alarmed.
2-Pour this into the base of a round cake tin no bigger than 24cm or into a small flat bottomed ring tin. Allow to cool.
3-Slice overlapping bananas and onto the set caramel to cover base. Set aside.

Oven temperature
180 degrees C for 45 minutes or until tested clean with a cake skewer.

For the mixture
1-Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
2-Add sieved dry ingredients to the mixture and gently fold in.Add the mashed banana and the sour cream mix this through.
3-Dollop spoonfuls of the cake batter into the tin over the bananas and spared it out evenly. Be careful not to disturb the bananas underneath.
5-Turn out while still warm by placing a plate ontop of the tin and gently flip over using a tea towel to protect your hands.

What I love
Serving the cake with either fresh cream or a dollop of ice cream.

Happy baking!



Chocolate shortbread, teatime, teatime accompaniments, Uncategorized

Chocolate Pecan Shortbread


This shortbread is easy to make and totally delicious studded with chocolate and pecans .

175 g butter
50 g brown sugar
50 g white sugar
1 tsp vanilla essence
75 g pecand chopped
175 g chocolate chips or any good dark chocolate chopped
2 cups cake flour

For the mixture
1-Cream butter and sugars.
2-Add vanilla, then nuts,chocolate and nuts.
3-Press into prepared pan.

Tin preperation and oven temperature
1-Line a 30 x 23cm shallow cake pan with baking paper and sides sprayed with cooking spray.
2-Bake at 180 degrees C for about 20-25 minutes or until golden brown.
3-Cut into squares whilst still hot.

What I love
To substitute any nut in place of pecan nuts, I love hazelnuts too.

1701 copper kitchen, Uncategorized

Banana Orange Loaf


This simple banana loaf is with a hint of orange is just plain delicious, you will love it too.

125g butter
250 ml sugar
2 ex-large eggs
5 ml vanilla essence
1 cup mashed ripe bananas
500 ml cake flour
5 ml baking powder
1 ml salt
5 ml bicarb of soda
30 ml fresh orange juice
10 ml grated orange rind

For the mixture
1- Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
2-Add eggs one at a time beating well after each addition.
3-Sieve all dry ingredients and add to butter mixture folding in lightly by hand.
4-Add lemon juice and rind.
5-Spoon into prepared loaf pan.

Tin preperation and oven temperature.
1-Line the base of a 23cm loaf tin with non-stick baking paper.
2-Bake at 180 degrees C for about 1 hour or when tested clean with a cake skewer.
3-Loosen sides with a spatula then turn onto a wire rack to cool.

What I love
To add a handful of chopped pecans or macadamias to the above mixture.

Happy baking!