All measurements are Australian. If this scares you (and it should, if you’re not from Australia or NZ), check here: http://alldownunder.com/australian-convert/measurement-chart.htm Now that we have that straight, let me be honest: my family’s cooking method often entails approximation. This means that my process when following recipes goes something like “That looks about right. Let’s see what happens.” No two honey cakes are ever the same using my method. To add insult to injury, for one cake this year I added a lot of ginger (both powdered and crystallised) and replaced most of the orange juice with cloudberry liqueur. I rejoice in the variations and sometimes wonder why other people need to measure ingredients precisely for their cakes to work.
500 g honey
1 cup sugar
1 ½ cups plain flour
1 ½ cups SR flour
juice and rind of a big navel orange or (instead of some of the juice) liqueur
two heaped tbs. good, rich cooking chocolate
2 tablespoons very, very strong black coffee
approx. 1 cup oil (a salad oil is best, but not olive)
3-4 extra large eggs
½ tsp good vanilla essence
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
Just under a cup boiling water
a cup of your favourite dried fruits and nuts (chopped)
spices to taste, between 1-2 tsp
Pre-heat oven to 250°C. Line a big tin (or two medium tins) with paper.
Beat eggs, sugar, oil, and honey. Add orange rind and juice. Add spices. Sift both flours with soda. Add to liquids. Add chocolate, coffee, vanilla, fruit and nuts. Mix well. Add boiling water.
Put the mixture in the tin/s, making sure the fruit is evenly distributed. Place the cake in the oven, reducing heat to 180°C. After an hour, reduce heat again, to 150°C until the cake is done (normally another 15-20 minutes).