Sultana grape cake




One of Australia’s greatest cooks is Maggie Beer, co-star of The Cook and The Chef, and producer of her own range of food products. For some time, I have owned one of Maggie’s cookbooks, Maggie’s Kitchen, and I have been eyeing up her Sultana Grape Cake ever since then. The Sultana Grape Cake contains 3 cups of sultana (green) grapes and the zest of 4 lemons, which combine to produce a fresh, fruity cake. Maggie also made this cake on The Cook and The Chef. The recipe was inspired by a recipe in a cookbook that Maggie had called Riches from the Vine. The top of the cake is supposed to have grapes on it – unfortunately, mine all resolutely sank into the cake. No matter – I still think it is quite handsome, don’t you? I absolutely adored this cake. Not only is it fresh and fruity, it is light and fluffy, and compared with many cakes, contains a minimal amount of fat from butter and oil. I would make this cake again in a heartbeat – it’s a shame that it is only possible during grape season. To make this cake, you will need: 3 eggs 150g sugar 1/2 cup olive oil 60g melted butter 75ml milk 200g plain flour 1 teaspoon baking powder finely grated zest of 4 lemons large pinch ground nutmeg 500g fresh seedless green grapes 1 tablespoon demerara sugar icing sugar for dusting (if desired) Preheat your oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Grease and line a 20cm round springform pan. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the eggs and sugar together until pale and thick. Add the oil, milk and butter and mix well. In another bowl, sift together the flour and baking powder, and stir in the lemon zest and nutmeg. Dump the flour mixture into the egg mixture and fold in until just combined. Fold through two third of the grapes. Pour the batter into the prepared cake tin and bake for 15 minutes. Remove the cake from the oven and sprinkle with the rest of the grapes and the demerara sugar. Return the cake to the oven and bake for 40 minutes or until cooked through. Turn the cake out onto a wire rack to cool completely. Dust the cooled cake with icing sugar (if desired) before serving.


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