Yesterday was Australia Day, an official public holiday to commemorate the arrival of the first fleet in 1788, the unfurling of the British flag at Sydney Cove and the proclamation of British sovereignty over the eastern seaboard of Australia.
On Australia day, us Aussies like to hit the beach, or throw a BBQ and listen to the "Hottest 100", a countdown of the hottest songs of the year. I did the latter.
We invited friends over, it was a typical sweltering 37 degree day. We cooked a BBQ, spent hours in the pool, and guessed what song would be number one...I was correct in guessing Kings of Leon - Sex on Fire!
I also made some Lamington Cupcakes to go with the day, one of our traditional desserts. They are said to have been named after Baron Lamington, a popular governor of Queensland from 1896 to 1901, there are many stories of how the Lamington came to be about, most of them amusing...typically Aussie!
Normally these cakes are square, and coated in chocolate icing, but I omitted the chocolate for some Aussie colours, oh and hilariously the only coconut I had on hand was tinged green from a previous need for green coconut grass. The first recipe I tried turned out a bit dry, so I found a slightly different one and it was much moister.
Here is the second recipe I used for those who would like to try an Australian tradition at home, its nice and simple:
Ingredients for Cake:
1/2 cup butter
3/4 cup caster sugar
1 1/2 cups self raising flour
1/2 cup milk
Ingredients for icing:
2 cups icing sugar
1 big tablespoon butter
1/3 cup cocoa (or omit and replace with food colouring of choice)
1 tsp vanilla
approx 2 cups of coconut
Cream the butter and sugar, then beat in eggs and vanilla. Mix in the flour and milk. Spoon into separate patty pans and bake for approx 15 mins on 180 C.
Allow to cool.
Icing: Mix the ingredients except coconut with boiling water until quite thin. Coat the cupcake tops in icing then immediately roll in coconut. Leave on a plate to set.