Nous tout content ene ti gato!
We, Mauritians, we are always finding excuses in order to indulge in cakes, fritters and what not at tea time. I am no exception to be honest as tea time is my most preferred moment to look forward to during the day. It is somehow like a small escape to go get croissants, pastries or succulent fritters from the corner shops nearby. The display would always make me feel like I am faced with my inner child. So many delights to feast your eyes on! It always takes me about 10 minutes or so to decide which one will go into my takeaway box for the day.
A lamington is an Australian cake, made from squares of butter cake or sponge cake coated in an outer layer of chocolate sauce and rolled in desiccated coconut – Wikipedia
Very popular across certain parts such as Europe – London etc, Lamington squares are a true delight. Soft-moist cake, flaky assorted coconut and soaked in strawberry jam flavours that will light you up at one mouthful, straightaway! You are sure to have found your piece of heaven out there.
They are always sold big in squares on the display. Back in the days, they would truly be a prize to have after school hours. Greedy as ever I would always attempt at having more than my mouth can contain in one mouthful. The real fun was having coconut flakes all over my school uniform and my fingers stained in delicious strawberry jam juice.
These delights have become very much exclusive now. You won’t find then as often in displays as it used to before. They make great engagement sweets on mehendi nights or as wedding cakes on Sundays. You can store them in an air tight container for at least a whole week. I think it is now time for you to make yours! Grab your apron and let me know how you get on.
Strawberry Jam Lamington Squares – Mauritian Gato Caré Rouge
Yield 8 – 10 Lamington squares (approx)
Preparation time: 1 hour
Cooking time: 45 mins
For the Lamington squares :
- 250g unsalted butter
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 4 eggs, room temperature
- 3 cup plain flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 cup of full cream liquid milk
- 1 tbsp vanilla extract
For the icing
- 1 cup icing sugar
- 2 cup hot water
- Pinch of red food colouring
- 4 big tbsp of strawberry jam
For the coating and toppings
- 500g desiccated coconut
- 50g Chantilly Crème (toppings)
- cherries – optional
Preheat oven to 180°C/160°C fan-forced. Grease a 3cm-deep, 20cm x 30cm (base) baking pan. Line with baking paper, leaving a 2cm overhang on all sides. Using a mixer, beat butter, sugar and vanilla until light and fluffy. Add eggs, 1 at a time, whisking well after each addition (mixture may curdle).
Sift half the flour and baking powder over butter mixture. Fold with spatula to combine. Add half the milk. Fold again to combine. Repeat with remaining flour and milk. Spoon into already greased pan. Smooth top. Bake for 30 minutes or until a skewer inserted in centre comes out clean. Leave to stand for 10 minutes. Turn over onto a wire rack. Cover with a clean tea towel. Set aside.
Step 3: (Icing)
Heat a nonstick pan with 2 cups of water. Add 1 cups of icing sugar, a drop of red food colouring as well as 4 tbsp of jam in the mixture. Stir until all combined and thick in consistency. Reserve and let aside to cool.
Cut cake into 8-10 pieces depending on how big you would like your squares to be.
Place coconut in a dish. Using a fork, dip 1 piece of cake in jam mixture. Toss in coconut. Shake off excess. Place on a wire rack over a baking tray. Repeat with remaining cake, icing and coconut. Stand for 2 hours or until set. Serve with Chantilly creme on top along with confectionery cherries for more flavours.