To be perfectly honest, I have very mixed feelings about Australia Day. I love my adopted country, consider myself an Aussie and a public holiday to celebrate being ‘Strayan ? Sweeet!
But, Australia Day commemorates the landing of the First Fleet, which led to massacres of the First People here – Indigenous Australians. To them, Australia Day is not a day for celebration, it is Invasion Day, a sombre day for reflection. Feels rather insensitive to have barbecues and picnics and cavort in the sun while others reflect on a dark day in their history. Their history should be our history, IS our history. Hardly surprising then, that there have been calls to move Australia Day to a more neutral date.
In case you’re wondering, “Eh? Which crazy political blog have I accidentally surfed over to?”, rest assured I don’t intend to start proselytising. However, as this is a personal space to share my thoughts and feelings - consider them shared.
But just in case you’re starting to freak out - don’t worry. The majority of people I know are wonderful, tolerant, intelligent people. Ordinary people who try and make a difference, no matter how small. I will celebrate this Australia Day by hanging out with the folks I love, and we will celebrate the mateship, the spirit of “a fair-go” and the larrikinism that sets Aussies apart from everyone else.
So Happy Australia Day to you, spread a little love to the person next to you. C’mon hippies, we can do this together ☺
Here are some lamingtons to sweeten the deal. The “Life’s much better if we all get along” Lamington. The “It tastes much better with chocolate” Lamington.
1 quantity of your favourite marbled butter cake
(I used a Margaret Fulton marble cake recipe)
(Lamington can either be made using sponge cake or butter cake)
Dessicated coconut to cover
(Optional: rainbow choc-bits, or sprinkles)
Chocolate “sauce” for dipping the lamingtons
(I’m going to admit to something highly un-Australian here, I don’t usually like lamingtons. They promise so much : a chocolate coating, smothered in coconut, then cake on the inside. It should all work together so beautifully, but I’m invariably disappointed that the coating just isn’t chocolate enough. The traditional coating is made from icing sugar, cocoa powder, sometimes butter and water, so I decided to amp it up by using real chocolate, and more butter. Butter is good).
145g dark chocolate (the kind you’d be happy to eat)
80g butter (I used salted butter to get a sweet/salty contrast)
3 tbsp (or to taste) icing sugar
Melt butter, icing sugar and chocolate together in the microwave or in a bain-marie (stir to make sure the sugar has dissolved). Let sit for a minute or two before using, so it’s not too runny. If mixture starts to set, gently reheat.
Cut the marble cake into squares and dip into the chocolate sauce. The easiest way that I found was to put the sauce into a deep bowl, then use a skewer to pick up a cake square and dip into the chocolate. Tap the skewer along the edge of the bowl to get rid of drips.
Roll the chocolate square in coconut and leave to set on a wire rack set over a baking tray to catch the drips.
MC Junior hates coconut so I made a few happy rainbow ones for her. The chunkier chocolate bits don’t stay on as well as the coconut and have a tendency to slide off. Refrigerating the chocolate covered square for a couple of minutes seems to help.