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Feijoa Cake with Crumble Topping

Serves 8

Our Kiwi favourite backyard fruit tree, the feijoa, may hail from Brazil, but we have made it our own. Its the intoxicating perfume - a mix of pineapple, banana, guava, melon and pear - that turns heads, and the lemony tang and lingering ripe strawberry banana taste that wins people over. The creamy coloured flesh is granular like a pear in some varieties and smooth in others, but all when perfectly ripe have clear jellied sections in the centre. Feijoas make an excellent crumble combined with banana, as in this recipe, or to add interest to apple crumble.

Feijoa Cake with Crumble Topping

Crumble topping
70g standard white flour
80g light brown sugar, sieved
tsp mixed spice
50g unsalted butter, melted
50g slivered almonds

75g unsalted butter
Finely grated zest 2 lemons and 1 Tbsp lemon juice
1 ripe banana
4 large feijoas, mashed
140g standard flour
Pinch of salt
1 level tsp baking powder
4 medium (size 6) free-range eggs, at room temperature
165g caster sugar
Icing sugar, for dusting

[US Measurements | Metric ]
  1. Preheat oven to 180C (regular bake). Line base and sides of a 23cm cake tin with baking paper.
  2. To make crumble topping, blend flour, sugar and mixed spice in a bowl, squishing any lumps. Pour over melted butter, mix in with a fork, then stir in almonds. Set aside.
  3. To make the cake, melt butter gently, then leave to cool. Grate zest from lemons and set aside. Peel and mash banana. Halve feijoas, scoop out flesh and mash. Mix mashed fruit with lemon juice. Sift flour with salt and baking powder onto a piece of paper.
  4. Break eggs into a bowl and whisk with an electric beater for 1 minute, then whisk in the sugar a tablespoon at a time. Continue beating until the mixture is pale, thick and mousse-like, and will form a ribbon when the beaters are lifted above the mixture (the mixture should fall off the beaters in a thick trail). Sprinkle the lemon zest over.
  5. Sift half the dry ingredients over the egg mixture and fold in lightly with a large spoon. Pour the cooled butter around the sides of the bowl. Fold together gently until just amalgamated. Sieve and fold in the rest of the dry ingredients, then fold in fruit.
  6. Pour into prepared tin. Gently scatter the crumble topping over, taking care not to deflate the cake batter. Bake for 30-40 minutes or until cake is springy to the touch, golden and pulling away from sides of the tin. Remove from oven and let it rest for 15 minutes. Invert onto a plate, peel off paper if still attached, cover with a cooling rack and turn it right side up again. Leave to cool completely. Dust with icing sugar before serving.

From Sweet Feast, published by New Holland

Photo Credit: Aaron Mclean

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