Easter’s coming … it’s time for some spicy treats

For Foodies with Sarah Kingsbury

Easter is fast approaching, so with that in mind I have included a great light easy Easter muffin recipe.

The Thai pumpkin soup is one of my all-time favourites and you can add extra curry paste to spice it up.

The orange and almond cake is a great winter treat and can also be used as a dairy-free option.

With the compliments of qualified chef and baker, Sarah Kingsbury


  • Thai pumpkin soup

IMG_3675 Thai pumpkin soup

2T oil
1 medium onion, finely diced
1T brown sugar
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 medium (about 1.2kg) pumpkin, such as buttercup, peeled and diced
2C stock (chicken or vegetable)
400ml canned coconut milk
1t dried chilli flakes
1/2 t finely grated lemon zest or 1T very finely chopped or grated lemongrass
1T fish sauce
Salt and ground black pepper
1/4 C fresh coriander or parsley leaves, chopped
Green curry paste, to taste
Coconut sambal (optional)
2 cloves garlic, crushed
Big handful fresh coriander leaves
1/2 C roasted peanuts
Finely grated zest of 1/2 lemon
1 red chilli, finely chopped
1/4 C thread coconut, toasted

– Heat oil in a big pot and gently cook onion, sugar and garlic until softened (8-10 minutes).

– Add all the other ingredients except fresh coriander and simmer until tender, about 20 minutes.

– Mash roughly, adjust seasonings to taste and mix through coriander. Garnish with coconut sambal.

– To make coconut sambal, blend together garlic, coriander, roasted peanuts, lemon zest and chilli. Mix in toasted coconut. Store in fridge for up to three weeks.


  • Easter muffins
Easter muffins
Easter muffins

450g strong white bread flour
1/2 t salt
50g butter, cut into pieces
7g sachet easy-blend dried yeast
2t ground mixed spice
2t ground cinnamon
50g golden caster sugar
Finely grated zest 1 lemon
275ml milk, plus extra to glaze
2 eggs, beaten
200g mixed dried fruit, cherries halved
For the crosses and glaze
2t plain flour
Golden syrup, to glaze

– Put all dough ingredients, except the dried fruit, in the bread maker, following the order in your manual. Set to dough programme.

– Once the dough is ready, turn it out onto a lightly floured surface and punch down to deflate. Pat into a large flat circle, tip the fruit in the centre and enclose with the dough. Knead the fruit in, cutting through the mixture with a sharp knife, then re-knead a few times to distribute the fruit evenly.

– Cut out about nine squares of baking paper and have ready a 12-hole muffin tin. Cut the dough into 9 even-sized pieces and roll each into a smooth ball. Push a square of the paper into a tin hole and drop in a ball of dough. Repeat with the rest. Cover the tin loosely with lightly-oiled cling film and leave in a warm place for 30-45 minutes or until doubled in size.

Preheat oven to fan, 180 degrees.

– For the crosses, blend the flour to a smooth paste with 5-6t of cold water. Spoon into a small plastic food bag and cut a small hole off one corner or use a piping bag. Pipe crosses on the buns.

– Bake for 15 minutes or until golden. Cool on a cooling rack. Brush with a little golden syrup while warm.


  • Spiced orange and almond cake

IMG_3666 spiced orange and almond cake

3 oranges
1 stick cinnamon
1 star anise
2 1/2 C flour
2 1/2 t baking powder
1t baking soda
1C almond meal
2C caster sugar
5 eggs
2t natural vanilla extract or paste
1C grapeseed oil
1T cardaman
Lemon glaze
50g cold-pressed coconut oil
2 1/2 C icing sugar
Zest from 2 lemons
Sugared rind to decorate (optional)
Rind from 2-3 oranges
2T sugar

– Cut oranges into quarters. Place into a saucepan and cover with water. Bring to the boil, then drain, add fresh water and bring to the boil again (helping to get rid of bitterness). Drain again, and then fill the saucepan with fresh water for the third time and bring to the boil again.

– Add cinnamon stick and star anise. Let saucepan simmer gently (not boil) for approx 35 minutes or until the rind is soft enough to be pierced easily with a fork.

– Beat the sugar, eggs, vanilla and oil in a large mixing bowl until thick and smooth. Add the orange puree and stir to combine.

– Add dry ingredients (don’t whisk or beat) until well combined. Pour the mixture into tin.

– Place in a preheated oven of 170°C and bake for about 70 minutes or until skewer comes out clean.

– Melt coconut oil or butter in a medium sauce pan

– Sift in the icing sugar, add lemon zest and juice. Mix until smooth.

– Pour glaze over the top and let it run down the sides.

– Mix sugar and orange rinds in another bowl and leave to sit for 5 minutes before garnishing cake.