Recipe video above. There is no cake more Australian than the Lamington! The sponge in this recipe is buttery and moist, generously coated in chocolate and coconut. Sandwiching with jam and cream is optional - takes it over the top, but it's great without. KEY TIP: Freeze the sponge before coating - read Note 2.
Preheat oven to 180C/350F (or fan forced 160C/320F).
Sift flour and baking powder together.
Grease a 20 cm x 30 cm / 8" x 12" cake pan. Line with baking paper (parchment paper), leaving an overhang on all sides (to make it easy to remove).
Beat butter, sugar and vanilla with an electric mixer on medium high speed until light and fluffy - about 1 1/2 to 2 minutes.
Add eggs 1 at a time, beating well after each addition so the batter is smooth, not curdled.
Add half the flour and gently fold to combine, then stir in half the milk. Repeat with remaining flour and milk.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 25 minutes until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.
Stand for 5 minutes then use the overhang baking paper to lift the cake out onto a wire rack and cool completely.
Prepare Cake to Coat
Cut cake into 15 squares (5 x 3), or 18 rectangles. Freeze for 1 to 1.5 hours. (Note 2)
Combine the Icing ingredients in a heat proof bowl and mix until smooth. Should be a syrup consistency, but not watery. (Note 2)
Place coconut in a shallow bowl or pan with a largish surface area (Note 3).
Place a piece of cake in the icing and roll to coat using 2 forks. Transfer it into the coconut and quickly roll to coat all over in coconut. Transfer to tray.
Repeat with remaining sponges.
Stand for 1 to 2 hours, or until set. Then serve with tea and coffee!
Optional: Jam and Cream
Beat cream and sugar until firm peaks form.
Cut coated Lamington in half horizontally. Spread with jam then pipe or dollop on cream. Top with lid, keep refrigerated.
1. Flour - Use either 1 3/4 cups (260g) self raising flour, or 1 3/4 cups (260g) plain flour + baking powder. The extra 3 tsp of baking powder doesn't affect the recipe, I make it both ways.2. Freezing / coating: Trying to coat a freshly cooked cake doesn't work, it just crumbles into the chocolate and makes a mess. The easiest way to coat the Lamingtons is as follows: cut into pieces and freeze for 1 hour just prior to coating. The frozen cake is much easier to handle for the dipping / coconut coating steps. Bonus: The cake stays more moist than traditional recipes that call for the cake to be left out overnight to dry out so it's easier to handle to coat in chocolate and coconut.3. Chocolate icing needs to be thick enough so the coconut will stick, but thin enough so the cake can be easily rolled in it.It thickens as it cools, making it harder to work with. If this happens, just microwave for 20 seconds to loosen it up (or set it over a saucepan with boiling water).3. Coconut bowl - use a shallow one with a larger surface area, easier to roll cake around.4. Storage: No cream: Store in airtight container for 3 to 4 days, or freeze for 2 - 3 months then thaw before serving. Cream: Store in refrigerator for 2 to 3 days.5. Nutrition per serving.Barely adapted from this recipe from taste.com.au. Ingredients the same, the main thing I changed is the process (especially the coating process, to make it easier!)