Allyson Gofton - Made with Love: Lunch box treats

Publish Date
Thursday, 5 February 2015, 2:17PM
By Allyson Gofton

In our home the new school year roller coaster has started again, and the trauma or the lunchbox returns. For the treats I do prefer home baking, so I’d like to share my children’s preferred lunch goodies with you.

Sour Cream Chocolate Fudge Cake

125 grams butter
100 grams cooking chocolate
2 cups brown sugar
3 eggs
½ teaspoon vanilla essence
2½ cups pure flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 cup light sour cream
¾ cup boiling water
2 tablespoons icing sugar


  1. Put the butter and chocolate in a large bowl. Melt by placing over hot water or in the microwave.

  2. Add brown sugar, eggs and vanilla essence. Beat with a wooden spoon until smooth and thick.

  3. Sift the flour and baking soda. Add the sifted mixture and sour cream to the eggs. Stir with a wooden spoon until combined.

  4. Add boiling water and stir until mixed in.

  5. Pour into a greased 22cm ring tin. Bake at 160ºC for 50-60 minutes or until cooked and firm to the touch. Cool in the tin.

  6. Serve dusted with icing sugar. Alternatively, drizzle chocolate icing over the cake.

Cooks Tips:

  • Be careful when melting chocolate in a microwave. It can burn easily, so check it regularly.

Peppermint Chocolate Crunch (pictured)

Serves: Makes 40 pieces

1 1/2 cups flour
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1 1/2 cups brown sugar
1 cup desiccated coconut
3 cups cornflakes or crushed weetbix
250 grams butter, melted
1 tsp vanilla essence
Extra desiccated coconut for garnish

Peppermint Icing:
1 1/2 cups icing sugar, sifted
1 tblsp melted butter
Hot water
Peppermint essence to taste

Chocolate Icing:
1 1/2 cups icing sugar, sifted
2 tblsp cocoa powder
1 tblsp butter, melted
Hot water


  1. Sift the flour and cocoa powder into a bowl. Stir in the brown sugar, coconut, cornflakes or weetbix, and make a well in the centre.

  2. Stir the melted butter and vanilla essence into the dry ingredients and mix well.

  3. Press the mixture into a greased and lined 33cm x 23cm slice tin.

  4. Bake at 180°C for 25 minutes.

  5. Cool 10 minutes before covering with peppermint icing and set aside in the refrigerator for 30 minutes to allow the icing to firm.

  6. Carefully spread with chocolate icing and sprinkle with coconut to decorate.

  7. Cut into squares and keep in an airtight container.

  8. Peppermint Icing Sift icing sugar into a bowl. Stir in the melted butter and sufficient hot water to make a thick icing. Flavour with peppermint essence.

  9. Chocolate Icing Sift icing sugar and cocoa powder into a bowl. Stir in the melted butter and sufficient hot water to make a thick icing.

Basic Pikelets
This recipe from my school days appears regularly in my home as they can be made in next to no time.

Serves: Makes 12

50 grams butter
1 cup self raising flour
¼ cup sugar
1 egg
¾ milk


  1. Melt the butter in a frying pan and cook over a moderate heat until it becomes nut brown. Remove from the heat to cool. Place the pan on a damp cloth to stop the cooking.

  2. Sift the flour and sugar with a pinch of salt into a bowl and stir to make a well in the centre.

  3. Beat the egg and milk together and pour into the well. Use a wooden spoon to gradually blend the liquid ingredients into the dry. By incorporating the flour slowly into the egg mixture, you avoid having a lumpy mix. Should lumps arise, beat well and they will break up.

  4. Beat in the cooled browned butter.

  5. Heat a lightly greased frying pan over a moderate heat. Once heated, cook dessertspoonfuls of mixture in the pan for about 1-1½ minutes. Once bubbles appear on the surface and burst, flip the pikelets over and cook for about the same time on the opposite side until they are lightly browned.

  6. Place on a cake rack to cool and cover with a clean tea towel while cooking the remaining mixture.

  7. Serve warm with or without butter or try serving with whipped cream and raspberry jam. Any leftovers can be reheated, under a light cover so they steam in the microwave for a minute or so to refreshen berfore serving.


Cooks Tips:

  • Add 1-2 tablespoons cocoa to the flour and an extra tablespoon of milk to make a batter of the same consistency.
  • Add ½ cup dried fruit and a little flavouring: cranberries or blueberries and orange rind. Currants or lemon rind. Sultanas or raisins and mixed spice.
  • Add about ½ cup finely diced fresh fruit like apple, pear, banana, feijoa, blueberries or raspberries, ripe peaches or nectarines.
  • Add ½ cup chocolate chips - try a mix of dark and white chocolate chips and add a few drops of vanilla essence.

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