Pannacotta Lamingtons

As it's Australia Day tomorrow, I felt duty bound to make some lamingtons. For those of you new to the blog, it's a bit of a tradition around here. Each year I make a batch of lamingtons for Australia Day but each year I like to try something different. One year I made a large lamington cake. Another year I made lamington cupcakes and this year I made some pannacotta lamingtons.

I did not come up with the idea. The credit must go to Nadine Ingram, baker extraordinare from Flour and Stone bakery in Woolloomooloo in Sydney. Her original recipe can be found here. I've not eaten one of these before so I was flying by the seat of my pants when I made these. 

I pretty much used my regular lamington recipe but jazzed it up with the addition of some yoghurt pannacotta. Yoghurt pannacotta is much thicker than regular pannacotta, so I had a bit of trouble getting it to soak into the cake. I binned the first batch and tried again. This time I poured the pannacotta mixture over the still hot cake and pierced it many time with a fine skewer. This time I was much more successful but I was still left with a thin coating of pannacotta on the top of the cake. I forged ahead.

Nadine makes a double layer lamington and she sandwiches her lamingtons with some home made raspberry jam. I pulled out a pot of my home made summer berry jam but when I tried to sandwich the cakes, the top cake slid right off the jam topped pannacotta layer. I could have persevered and turned the pannacotta layer upside down but I couldn't be bothered and I decided my lamingtons would be single layered ones like the originals.

I took the lamingtons in to work and waited for the feedback. They were judged a roaring success, so here's the recipe so you can make them for yourself. For all my recipes, I use a 250 ml cup and a 20 ml tablespoon. All eggs are 60 grams and my oven is a conventional oven not fan forced, so you may need to reduce your oven temperature by 20°C.

Pannacotta Lamingtons (Makes 24)

Yoghurt Pannacotta
1 tablespoon cold water
1¼ teaspoons gelatine
½ cup full cream milk
Scant ¼ cup caster sugar
½ vanilla bean, split, seeds scraped
1 cup Greek yoghurt

Butter Cake
125 grams (4 oz) unsalted butter
150 grams (¾ cup) caster sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 eggs
2 cups self-raising flour, sifted
¾ cup milk

Chocolate icing
10g (2 tsp) butter
60g (2oz) dark chocolate, coarsely chopped
2 cups sifted icing sugar
¼ cup (25g) cocoa powder
½ tsp vanilla extract
½ cup (125 ml) milk

3-4 cups coconut, desiccated, shredded, flakes or a combination of all three.

Yoghurt Pannacotta
Place the water in a small bowl and sprinkle the gelatine over the water. Set aside until the gelatine has softened, 5 minutes. Place the milk, the sugar and the vanilla bean and seeds in a saucepan over medium heat and bring to a simmer. Remove from heat and stir in the gelatine. Cool to room temperature, and then remove the vanilla bean from the milk mixture. Gradually whisk the milk into the yoghurt and stir together gently. Pour the mixture through a sieve into a jug and leave to one side while you make the cake.

Preheat oven to moderate (180°C conventional). Line the base and sides of a lamington tin (20 x 30 cm) with baking paper.

To make the cake, cream the butter, sugar and vanilla together in a bowl until light and fluffy. Add the eggs and mix until combined well. Add the flour alternately with the milk to make a soft batter. You may not need to use all the milk. Spread the mixture into the prepared tin; smooth the surface. Bake for about 30 minutes, or until golden and springs back when lightly touched.

Place onto a cooling rack and prick the surface all over with a skewer. Pour about half of the pannacotta mixture over the still warm cake. As it’s absorbed, add a little more pannacotta. You won’t use all the pannacotta mixture. Let the cake cool before covering and placing in the fridge over night.  

The following day, make the chocolate icing. Take the cake from the fridge and cut into 24 squares. Dip a square into the icing; drain off excess, then toss the cake in coconut. I normally coat 3 or 4 cakes then toss the coconut out as it becomes stained and start again with fresh coconut. Place cakes on wire rack to set, pannacotta side down. I used a combination of desiccated, shredded and flaked or you could use just desiccated or shredded coconut.

Chocolate Icing
Melt the butter and chocolate in a medium heatproof bowl over a saucepan of simmering water. Stir sifted icing sugar and cocoa into the chocolate. Add the vanilla extract and enough milk to make an icing of a coating consistency. As the icing thickens you can thin it out with a little more milk or boiling water or you can zap it in the microwave for about 20 seconds on high.

These lamingtons are a labour of love as they take 2 days to make, cool and ice but the end result is worth it. Soaking the cake layer in pannacotta is a genius idea because it makes the lamingtons so moist.

Don't take my word for it, you just have to make these for yourself!

See you all again next week,

Bye for now,


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