Apple Dessert Cake

Bee's Baking - Apple CakeAdapted from Mary Berry


225g self-raising flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
225g caster sugar (½ subbed for granulated sweetener here)
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
½ teaspoon almond extract
150g butter, melted (½ subbed for 80g applesauce)
250g apples, peeled and cored (~ 2 apples, 1 Royal Gala and 1 Granny Smith used here)
25g flaked almonds

To serve: icing sugar, crème fraîche, ice cream, etc.


1. Preheat oven to 160°C/320°F and grease a 20cm loose-bottomed cake tin
2. Measure flour, baking powder, sugar, eggs, almond extract, and butter into a bowl. Stir together and then beat for 1 minute until combined.
3. Spread half the batter into the prepared tin.
4. Chop the apples thickly then lay them on top of the mixture in the tin, piling them towards the centre.
5. Roughly spoon the remaining batter over the apples – this may be awkward. Make sure the batter covers the centre well as it will spread in the oven.
6. Sprinkle with flaked almonds.
7. Bake in the preheated oven for 1 to 1¼ hours (time will depend on your oven – original recipe suggested up to 1 ½ hours) until golden and coming away from the sides of the tin.

– Recipe yields 8 servings
– Each cookie contains ~290 calories, 41g carbs, 6g protein, and 11g fat


Mango and Ginger Chutney

Bee's Baking - Mango and Ginger ChutneyAdapted from Grandma’s Special Recipes – Jams, Jellies & Preserves (book)


1 kg (1000g) mango flesh, chopped (approximately 4 mangos)
1 onion, finely chopped
350ml white wine vinegar
225g brown sugar
5 cm/2 inch piece root ginger, grated
50g sultanas (golden raisins)
110g glacé ginger (or stem ginger), finely chopped
1 cinnamon stick
½ teaspoon grated nutmeg
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper

*Recipe will also require a number of jars, enough for 1 ½ litres of chutney should be sufficient. 


1. Put mangoes, onions, salt, and vinegar into a large pan and cook gently until onions begin to soften
2. Add sugar and heat gently until sugar has dissolved. Bring to boil, stirring.
3. Add remaining ingredients and cook gently for 40-60 minutes until thick and vinegar absorbed.
4. Discard cinnamon stick and spoon into hot sterilised jars, covering and sealing them.

Nutritional Information

– Recipe yields ~1kg/35oz chutney.

Red Velvet Cheesecake Swirl Brownies

Bee's Baking - Red Velvet Cheesecake Swirl BrowniesAdapted from Sally’s Baking Addiction



115g unsalted butter
2 large eggs
200g granulated sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
20g unsweetened cocoa powder
⅛ teaspoon salt
15ml (3 teaspoons) liquid/gel red food colouring
¾ teaspoon white vinegar
95g all purpose-flour

Cheesecake Swirl

225g cream cheese, softened
50g granulated sugar
1 egg yolk
½ teaspoon vanilla essence

*I have not as of yet attempted any substitutions in this recipe and cannot vouch for the results of any made.


1. Preheat oven to 180°C/350°F and spray/line an 8×8 baking tray

For the brownie 

2. Melt the butter in the microwave.
3. Whisk the following into the butter in this order: sugar, vanilla essence, cocoa powder, food colouring, and vinegar.
3. Beat together eggs until combined, then whisk into the butter mixture.
4. Fold in the flour until completely incorporated, being careful not to over-mix.

For the cheesecake swirl

5. Beat all ingredients for the cheesecake swirl (cream cheese, egg yolk, sugar, and vanilla) with a mixer on medium speed until smooth.


6. Pour approximately ¾ of the brownie batter into the prepared pan, reserving 3-4 tablespoons
7. Dollop spoonfuls of the cheesecake mixture on top of the brownie batter in the pan
8. Cover with remaining brownie batter
9. Glide a knife through the layers to create a swirl pattern
10. Bake for 28-30 minutes until a skewer inserted comes out clean. Allow to cool completely before cutting into squares.

– Recipe yields 16 servings
– Each cookie contains ~204 calories, 20g carbs, 3g protein, and 12g fat

Gingerbread Men

Bee's Baking - Gingerbread MenAdapted from Exclusively Food


375g (2½ metric cups) plain flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons mixed spice
3 teaspoons ground ginger
140g butter, softened (add ¼ teaspoon salt if using unsalted)
130g brown sugar
125ml (about 170g) golden syrup, treacle, or even molasses (golden syrup used here)
1 egg yolk

*Icing & lollies, to decorate if desired.


1. Preheat oven to 180°C/350°F
2. Sift flour, baking soda, mixed spice, and ginger into a bowl and set aside
3. Beat butter and brown sugar together until well combined and mixture is creamy
4. Add treacle/syrup/molasses and egg yolk to the butter mixture and beat until combined – about 30 seconds
5. Slowly beat or stir the flour mixture into the butter mixture.
6. Bring dough together with hands into a ball. Divide into two.
7. Place one half of the dough between two sheets of baking paper on a tray  or chopping board and roll until about 4-5mm thick. Repeat with other half of dough.
8. Place rolled dough in the freezer or refrigerator for at least 15 to 30 minutes respectively until chilled
9. Remove chilled dough and use cookie cutter to cut shapes from the dough.
10. Transfer shapes onto a lined baking tray, about 2cm apart. Bake for around 10-15 minutes and allow to cool on a baking tray.
11. Decorate with icing and lollies, as desired.

Nutritional Information

– Recipe yields 34 servings
– Each cookie (unfrosted) contains ~103 calories, 16g carbs, 1g protein, and 3g fat

Blueberries & Cream Cupcakes

Bee's Baking - Blueberry & Cream CupcakesAdapted from Sally’s Baking Addiction


210g plain (all-purpose) flour
½ teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
115g unsalted butter, room temperature (here 60g butter + 60g applesauce was used)
100g brown sugar
100g white sugar (equivalent granulated sweetener used here)
1 large egg, room temperature
180ml milk, room temperature (any type is fine – soy used here)
60g yoghurt or sour cream (plain non-fat Greek used here)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 teaspoons lemon zest
180g frozen blueberries (do not thaw)

To decorate: cream cheese or white chocolate icing, sprinkles, fresh blueberries, etc.


1. Preheat oven to 180°C/350°F
2. Sift together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt into a bowl and set aside.
3. Melt the butter, and whisk it (along with applesauce, if using) with the sugars (and/or sweeteners)
4. Vigorously whisk in the egg, milk, yoghurt/sour cream, vanilla essence, and lemon zest until combined
5. Slowly whisk wet ingredients into dry until there are no lumps
6. Fold in blueberries gently until just combined
7. Divide mixture among 12 cupcake liners and bake for 20-25 minutes until a skewer/toothpick comes out clean
8. Serve with a dusting of icing sugar, or allow to cool completely before frosting with an icing of choice

Nutritional Information

– Recipe yields 12 servings
– Each cupcake (unfrosted) contains ~163 calories, 26g carbs, 4g protein, and 4g fat

Lamb Stoba

Bee's Baking - Lamb StobaAdapted from 1000 Best Recipes from Australian Women’s Weekly


500g lamb shoulder, cut into 3cm pieces (I only had 410g of lamb leg steak)
1 medium brown onion, sliced thinly
10g fresh ginger, sliced thinly
1 fresh long red chilli, sliced thinly
1 small red capsicum, chopped coarsley
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground allspice
½ cinnamon stick
1 x 400g tin diced tomatoes
1 teaspoon finely grated lime rind
1 tablespoon lime juice
20-25g firmly packed brown sugar (20g used here, to taste)
Vegetable oil, as required for cooking


1. Cook lamb, in batches, until browned all over. Set aside.
2. Cook onion, ginger, chilli, capsicum, and spices in a pan until the onion softens.
3. Add lamb and remaining ingredients. Simmer, covered, until lamb is tender
* Original recipe states to simmer for about 1hr, using a fattier cut of meat than I did. I used a pressure cooker and had it done in 25 minutes.

Nutritional Information

– Recipe yields 2 servings (when served alone)
– Each serving contains ~422 calories, 30g carbs, 104g protein, and 10g fat

– Recipe yields 4 servings (when served with rice)
– Each serving (no rice) contains ~211 calories, 15g carbs, 52g protein, and 5g fat
– Each serving (with 50g raw weight uncooked rice) contains ~394 calories, 55g carbs, 56g protein, and 5g fat

Turkish Chicken Pilaf w/ Almonds

Bee's Baking - Turkish Chicken PilafAdapted from 1000 Best Recipes from Australian Women’s Weekly


500g chicken breast, in bite-size chunks
30g butter
20g (4 cloves) garlic, minced
1 large brown onion, diced
40g currants
1 long red chilli, finely chopped
1 teaspoon allspice
½ teaspoon cinnamon
3 anchovies, roughly chopped
1 cup (250ml) water
2 cups (500ml) chicken stock
300g or 1½ cups (raw weight) basmati rice
45g slivered almonds
Salt and pepper, to taste
Parsley, to serve


  1. Melt a third of the butter in a pan. Add chicken and cook in batches before setting aside.
  2. Melt remaining butter in a pan. Add garlic, almonds, and onion and cook until onion is soft.
  3. Add spices, anchovies, and currants. Cook, stirring for 2 minutes until fragrant.
  4. Add the uncooked rice and cook for another 2 minutes.
  5. Add the stock and water, then bring the mixture to the boil then reduce the heat.
  6. Allow the mixture to simmer, covered, for about 20 minutes or until rice is just tender.
  7. Stir chicken into the pilaf mixture and cook, covered, until heated through.
  8. Serve pilaf sprinkled with chilli and parsley.

Nutritional Information

– Recipe yields 5 servings
– Each serving (no rice) contains ~500 calories, 61g carbs, 33g protein, and 10g fat


Cheeseburger Casserole

Bee's Baking - Cheeseburger CasseroleAdapted from Skinny Taste


170g (raw weight) rotini (spiral) pasta
2 cloves (10g) garlic, minced
1 teaspoon salt
500g extra lean beef mince
50g tomato paste
2 brown onions, diced
2 x 400g tins diced Italian tomatoes
125g (1 cup) cheese (double for casserole, reduced-fat cheddar used here)
60g pickles, chopped finely
30g Dijon mustard (BBQ sauce would probably also be good)
1 tablespoon (20ml) Worcestershire sauce (optional)
Extra meat (optional) – sausage, bacon, etc. (85g bacon + 80g chorizo used here)
Extra vegetables (optional) – zucchini, mushrooms, etc. (200g mixed veg used here)
Extra spices (optional) – cayenne pepper, paprika, chilli powder, etc.
Salt and pepper to taste
Olive oil, as required


1. Preheat oven to 180°C (350°F, Gas 4) & spray a baking dish (if making into a casserole)
2. Cook pasta according to package directions until al dente and set aide
3. In a large skillet, cook onions (+ extra meat/veg) until soft, about 5 minutes
4. Stir in the garlic for 30 seconds, then add beef and cook until browned
5. Season mixture with salt and pepper (and any additional spices)
6. Stir in tomato paste, tomatoes, and mustard.  Allow mixture to thicken for about 2 minutes
7. Toss meat mixture with pasta and either: pour into baking dish and sprinkle with cheese, then bake until cheese is melted (20 minutes) OR stir through desired amount of cheese (the latter was done here)
8. Sprinkle with pickles and serve.

Nutritional Information

– Recipe yields 5 servings
– Each serving contains ~511 calories, 48g carbs, 44g protein, and 13g fat


Arroz a la Cubana

ArrozalaCubanaAdapted from Panlasang Pinoy


500g beef mince
500g pork mince
1 medium yellow onion, minced
20g minced garlic
1 medium tomato, diced
50g (2 tablespoons) tomato paste
3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon soy sauce
100g frozen peas
1 carrot, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
100g raisins

Salt (or fish sauce), and pepper – to taste.
Olive oil – as required for cooking.

To serve: rice, fried egg, fried banana


1. Cook the garlic, onion, and tomato in a large pan until tomato becomes soft
2. Add the beef & pork mince, and continue cooking until browned
3. Add the tomato paste, Worcestershire sauce, and soy sauce. Simmer, covered, for 10-12 minutes until liquid evaporates.
4. Add the carrots and peas, then cover and cook over low heat for 5-8 minutes. Stir in raisins in the last minute or two.
5. Serve with rice, fried egg, and fried banana

Nutritional Information

– Recipe yields 6 servings
– Each serving (meat only) contains ~339 calories, 26g carbs, 39g protein, and 8g fat
– Each serving (with 50g – dry weight – of rice) contains ~521 calories, 66g carbs, 41g protein, and 8g fat


Chocolate Chilli

ChocolateChilliAdapted from Manila Spoon


500g beef mince
Salt & Pepper (to taste)
1 medium onion, diced
3 garlic cloves (~15g), minced
2 celery stalks, sliced ~½ inch thickness
½ green bell pepper (capsicum), diced
2 teaspoons unsweetened cocoa powder
2 teaspoons chilli powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon (can omit and add ½ teaspoon cumin if preferred)
1 (~15oz/400g) tin black beans, drained & rinsed
1 (~15oz/400g)  tin diced tomatoes (with green chillies, if available)
1¼ cups (310ml) beef stock (more, if required)
15g-30g (½oz-1oz) 70%+ dark chocolate (depending on your tastes)
Olive oil, as required

To serve: sour cream, cheese, cilantro, rice, etc.


1. Brown the beef in a deep pot or pan, seasoning with salt and pepper
2. Add the onion, garlic, celery, and capsicum and cook for 6-8 minutes until vegetables have softened
3. Reduce the heat and stir in the spices – cocoa powder, chilli powder, cumin, and cinnamon.
4. Continue cooking on low for 3-4 minutes before adding the beans, tomatoes, and stock
5. Bring to the boil and simmer, covered, on low for about 1 hour (or transfer to a slow cooker and cook on low for 4-6 hours)
6. At the end of the cooking, add the chocolate and let it melt, stirring it in.
7. Serve with sour cream, cheese, cilantro, rice, etc. if desired.

Nutritional Information

– Recipe yields 4 servings
– Each serving (chilli only) contains ~353 calories, 35g carbs, 33g protein, and 8g fat

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