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The Cake That Won Hearts

Dial up your love of cake and spice with this family favourite that calls on preserved pumpkin and lime zest to seal the deal.

Serves: 20
Preparation: 30min
Cooking: 1hr 15min


  • 1 whole egg
  • 6 egg yolks
  • 500 g caster sugar
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground cardamom
  • ½ tsp ground cloves
  • 1 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
  • 3 tsp lime zest, finely chopped (not grated)
  • 1 tsp rose essence or 2 tbsp rosewater
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 275 g raw cashews, finely chopped
  • 250 g semolina, lightly toasted in a dry frying pan and cooled
  • 200 g chopped preserved pumpkin, drained and chopped
  • 4 egg whites


  • You will need a 20cm square cake tin. This recipe makes 20-25 small pieces.
  • Preheat the oven to 150˚C. Grease and line the base and sides of a 20 cm square cake tin with brown paper, then a double layer of baking paper. Brush the inner paper with melted butter.
  • Using a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat the egg, egg yolks and caster sugar until thick and pale. Add the spices, lime zest, rose essence and honey and mix well. Stir in the cashews, toasted semolina and preserved pumpkin.
  • Whisk the egg whites in a large, spotlessly clean bowl until soft peaks form. Fold one third of the egg whites into the batter to loosen, then fold in the remaining egg whites. Pour into the lined tin and bake for 1 – 1¼ hours or until the cake is evenly golden brown on top and feels firm to the touch. When cooked the centre of the cake should still be somewhat moist so the skewer test is not recommended. If the cake is browning too much during cooking, cover loosely with a piece of baking paper.
  • Remove from the oven and leave in the tin to get quite cold before cutting. Do not attempt to turn out this cake. Cut into small squares and lift each one separately on to serving plate.

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