Translate

The Great Australian Lamington

The Great Australian Lamington
Lord Lamington Governor of Queensland - creator of the world-famous Australian Lamington.

The Humble Australian Lamington - Created in Queensland in 1901


Australian Lamington
THE WORLD-FAMOUS AUSTRALIAN CULINARY ICON NAMED AFTER THE GOVERNOR OF QUEENSLAND - LORD LAMINGTON.

The world-famous Australian lamington is over a century old.

Despite some dubious claims from New Zealand, the lamington is as Australian as meat pies, kangaroos and Holden cars, ranking alongside the other true Australian icons of the pavlova, peach melba and Vegemite.

This Australian culinary icon, which consists of sponge cake dipped in chocolate and liberally sprinkled with fine desiccated coconut, was created through an accident at work by a maid-servant to Lord Lamington, the thoroughly-British eighth Governor of Queensland.

The maid-servant was working at Government House in Brisbane when she accidentally dropped the Governor's favourite sponge cake into some melted chocolate.

Lord Lamington was not a person of wasteful habits and suggested that it be dipped in coconut to cover the chocolate to avoid messy fingers.

Paul Tully celebrates
the 100th anniversary
of the world renowned
Australian lamington
on 19 December 2001
Lord Lamington devoured this new taste sensation with great delight and the maid-servant's error was proclaimed a magnificent success by all! The Governor however is on the record as calling them "those bloody poofy woolly biscuits".

Lord Lamington was born in London, England on 29 July 1860 as Charles Wallace Alexander Napier COCHRANE-BAILLIE holding the aristocratic title of Baron Lamington.

He was Governor of Queensland from 9 April 1896 to 19 December 1901.

After leaving Queensland, he went on to become the Governor of Bombay in India for 4 years. He died at Lamington House, Lanarkshire, Scotland, in 1940.

According to Hansard page 728 at the Australian Constitutional Convention in Canberra on 11 February 1998, Cr Paul Tully, an elected delegate representing "Queenslanders for a Republic" suggested that his extensive research of the Governors of the 6 Australian colonies and states had produced evidence of only "one, single, solitary, positive achievement of any Governor since the First Fleet arrived in 1788" and that was Lord Lamington's contribution to the culinary delights of the Australian nation!

Lord Lamington served Queensland for 5 years but despite all of his colonial, aristocratic pomp and ceremony, the only thing which Charles Wallace Alexander Napier COCHRANE-BAILLIE will ever be remembered for in Australia is the creation of the world-famous lamington.

PAUL TULLY'S TRUE-BLUE DELICIOUS AUSSIE LAMINGTON RECIPE

INGREDIENTS
3 eggs
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup castor sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
1 cup self-raising flour 1/2 cup milk.

Beat the eggs well, gradually adding the sugar until dissolved. Add the milk and vanilla essence and then stir in the self raising flour and whip the butter into the mixture. Pour the mixture into a cake tin or lamington baking dish and bake in a moderate oven of 180 degrees Celsius for 35 minutes. Allow the cake to cool for at least 10 minutes and then stand for 24 hours preferably in the refrigerator, before applying the icing.

THE CHOCOLATE ICING
4 cups icing sugar
1/3 cup cocoa
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup milk
4 tablespoons boiling water
3 cups desiccated coconut.

Stir the cocoa and icing sugar vigorously in a large bowl, adding the milk, butter and boiling water, warming the chocolate mixture over a very low heat until it has a smooth creamy texture. Cut the sponge cake into equal squares about 5cm x 5cm and, using a fork or thin skewer, dip each piece into the chocolate mixture ensuring that the mixture is liberally and evenly applied. Dip each piece into the desiccated coconut, allowing the lamingtons to cool on a wire tray for several hours.

THEN SIT BACK, RELAX AND SAVOUR THE DELIGHTS OF YESTERYEAR COURTESY OF LORD LAMINGTON'S ABSENT-MINDED MAID-SERVANT!

THANK GOD, THE LAMINGTON WAS NOT CHRISTENED THE "COCHRANE-BAILLIE". IMAGINE ASKING FOR A "COCHRANE-BAILLIE" IN A CAKE SHOP!


Do you have an interesting historical anecdote about the Australian lamington?
Please email the Australian Lamington Official Website.


Follow by Email

Classic Australian Lamingtons

A classic Aussie lamington 
with a cup of tea or coffee.
Classic Australian Lamingtons.

Serves 10 or more

Cooking time: More than 1 hour

Favourite flavours: Cakes/baking

Cooking method: Bake

Special options: Kid friendly


INGREDIENTS
4 eggs
2/3 cup (150g) caster sugar
1 cup (150g) self-raising flour
1/4 cup (35g) cornflour
25g soft butter, chopped
1/3 cup (80ml) boiling water
3 cups (270g) desiccated coconut 

CHOCOLATE ICING
4 2/3 cups (750g) icing sugar mixture
1/2 cup (50g) cocoa powder
20g soft butter
3/4 cup (180ml) milk

METHOD
1. Preheat the oven to 180°C (160°C fan-forced). Grease and flour a 20cm x 30cm lamington pan, line base with baking paper.

2. Beat the eggs in a small bowl with an electric mixer until light in colour. Gradually add the sugar; beat for about 8 minutes or until the mixture is thick. Mixture should form thick ribbons when the beaters are lifted. 

3. Meanwhile, sift the flour and cornflour together three times. Combine butter and boiling water in a small heatproof bowl.

4. Transfer the egg mixture to a large bowl. Sift the flour mixture over the egg mixture; using a balloon whisk or a large metal spoon, gently fold the flour into the egg mixture, then fold in the butter mixture. 

5. Pour mixture into prepared pan. Bake in a moderate oven for about 25 minutes or until sponge springs back when touched lightly in the centre and comes away from side of pan. Turn cake onto a wire rack to cool.

6. Cut cake into 20 even pieces. 

CHOCOLATE ICING
Meanwhile, sift the icing sugar and cocoa into a large heatproof bowl; add the butter and milk; stir over a medium saucepan of simmering water until icing is smooth and thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Divide icing mixture into 2 small bowls.

Place coconut in a shallow bowl.

Using a large fork, dip each piece of cake briefly into icing until cake is coated in icing. Hold over bowl to drain off any excess. Dip half the cake pieces in one bowl of icing and the other half in the second bowl of icing. (We have separated the icing into two bowls, as cake crumbs will thicken the icing and make it difficult to use.) If the icing becomes too thick, stand it over hot water while dipping, or reheat gently with a little more milk. If necessary, strain the icing into a clean bowl.

Toss cake gently in coconut. Transfer cake to a wire rack; stand until set. 

Suitable to freeze. Chocolate icing suitable to microwave.

Note: The cake is easier to handle if it is made a day ahead or refrigerated for several hours. A sponge or a butter cake can be used for lamingtons. Lamingtons can also be split and filled with jam and cream, but this will make it a little more difficult to coat with the icing. 

TOP TIPS FOR THE PERFECT SPONGE

  • Sponges have a reputation for being difficult to make, but are actually quite simple if you have a good electric mixer and a light hand.
  • Have the eggs at room temperature before you begin beating.
  • Beating the eggs in a deep bowl, rather than a wide, shallow one, will give maximum volume. 
  • Gentle folding in of the flour and water is important; heavy handling equals a heavy cake. 
  • Use the kitchen tool you feel most comfortable with. Some people prefer a large metal spoon, some a rubber spatula. We prefer a large balloon whisk to fold through without deflating the mixture.
  • If all else fails, a packaged sponge mix, baked in a lamington pan, can also be used.

No comments: