The community garden cake

We inherited this recipe from our visit to the Barwon Heads garden. We’ve made it a feature of our gardening eating since then; it was a hit at our plot handover. The chestnut flour, pine nuts and rosemary give a fabulous taste and it is easy to make.


155g chestnut flour; 155g self raising flour; 185g cold butter, chopped; 300g brown sugar; 1 1/4 tsp bicarb soda; 1 1/4 cup milk; 1 egg; 1 egg yolk; 70g raisins, soaked in hot water for 30 minutes then drained; 2 tbsp rosemary leaves; 40g (1/4 cup) pine nuts; 2 tbsp olive oil.


Line base and sides of a 20cm x 30cm lamington tin with baking paper. Process flours, 1/4 tsp sea salt and butter in a food processor until mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Add brown sugar and process until combined. Press half the flour mixture into the base of the pan.

Whisk bicarb soda, milk, egg and egg yolk in a bowl until well combined. Add remaining flour mixture and raisins. Mix well and pour over base. Scatter with rosemary and pine nuts and drizzle with olive oil.

Bake at 180 degrees C for 40 minutes or until a cake skewer comes out clean, covering with baking paper after 30 minutes to ensure against over browning. Cool in tin for 10 minutes.

**keep your chestnut flour stored in the frig to keep it from going rancid.

7 thoughts on “The community garden cake

  1. saide Gray says:

    This is a great recipe. sometimes chestnut flour can be hard to get and usually needs to be kept in the fridge. Good substitutes are almond meal or hazelnut meal.

    • Saide of Sandon says:

      I have recently discovered that I enjoy this cake more with about one third or less of the sugar suggested in the recipe, that is, less than 100 grams. I usually put in about 50 grams and keep the made cake in the fridge, if it lasts that long.

  2. jb says:

    Sources of chestnut flour in Central Vic: Tonnas, in Daylesford (on the road to Melbourne, next to the BP servo station), Castlemaine IGA, and sometimes Castlemaine Fruit Supplies, Moyston Street.

    • Julia Elkins says:

      Maxi IGA has a new supplier of chestnut flour, an Australian company called Cheznuts, and it is located near the fruit’n’veg/deli area, however the cost is $18+/250g.

      • janet barker says:

        Wow, that’s a lot! I think the Italian stuff from Tonnas is $6 for 500g, though it’d be better to buy Australian product.Wonder how easy it is to make your own?!

        • Saide of Sandon says:

          I think it may be possible to make your own if one lightly roasted the chestnuts in the oven, then used a mortar and pestle to pound the roasted chestnuts into a flour. I haven’t tried this and it may be more pasty than floury!

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