Write a review for your chance to win

Thank you to all the wonderful readers who have bought The Cake Maker’s Wish so far. Your support means we need to print more copies! YOU GUYS ARE AWESOME!

If you’ve read the book already, remember that just by writing a review for Goodreads or Amazon (and posting it to Facebook or Insta and tagging me so I can find it), you’ll go into the draw to win an indulgence pack including Ruby Olive jewellery, Fresh Chai Co chocolate chai, a block of chocolate and a signed backlist book. Winner drawn 2 July!

Thank you so much for your support 🙂

(Australian postal addresses only.)

Cake and Cover Competition

This week, The Cake Maker’s Wish finally made it out into the world after I began working on it five years ago! I had a wonderful time launching it online last Sunday afternoon. If you’d like to see the video, you’ll find it on Facebook here.

Now… for your chance to win a gorgeous prize pack!

Once you have your copy of The Cake Maker’s Wish, simply take a photo of it with some cake (any cake!) and post it to Facebook or Instagram, tagging me so I know it’s there, and using the hashtag #cakeandcover

Here’s an example:

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The winner will be chosen from a shortlist and win this wonderful prize pack, including a brooch and matching earring set from Ruby Olive, a copy of The Beekeeper’s Secret (for you to enjoy or pass on to a friend), my favourite brand of chai (and this one is chocolate chai!), and Lindt chocolate.

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The winner will be chosen on 2 July. I can’t wait to see your entries 🙂

Happy reading and caking!

Jo x

Guess What? I Have Goodies for You if you Pre-Order The Cake Maker’s Wish!

Copy of Spring Seasonal Outfits

GET YOUR SIGNED COPIES Of THE CAKE MAKER’S WISH

*USE THIS LINK*

Thank you to everyone who has asked about signed copies of The Cake Maker’s Wish. This is how you can get yourself not only a signed copy but extra goodies too!

Sandy Pages Books at Noosa (one of my local stores) can help.

If you pre-order the book before 18th May, I’ll be able to pop into the store to sign it for you or a loved one for their birthday or get-well gift… whatever you like.

To say thank you for pre-ordering, I’m going to email you an exclusive invitation to an online gathering to chat to me about the book (or dogs, or chocolate or cakes!)

AND I’ll send you an exclusive recipe that I’ve been working on from NEXT YEAR’S book (currently called The Jam Queen) that you might like to try out to bring to the gathering.

AND, Shamini is also discounting the RRP just for you!

As soon as the book is available, Shamini can post it straight to you. If you are local to Noosa, she can deliver it to your door. If you are outside Noosa but able to drive to the Noosa store, you can pick it up and save the postage.

 

  • Please note: the book is officially released on 2 June. If you would like to order for Mother’s Day, just let me know and I can email you a gift certificate you can print out and give to your mum.

Hooray! Physically distant but socially connected author-reader goodness!

Already pre-ordered the book? No problem! Simply email me your receipt and I’ll send you the invite too. Email: josephinemoon@live.com.au

CLICK HERE to get ordering. I can’t wait to get signing and I’m excited to meet you online!

 

The Best Flourless Chocolate Cake Ever (GF)

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This is a great flourless chocolate cake that is decadent, moist and with a hint of darkness to make it interesting. This dish is inspired by my character, Olivia Kent, who makes her flourless chocolate cake in her shop, Rambling Rose, one grey and misty morning in the Cotswolds.

If you’re gluten free, this recipe is perfect for you, so long a you ensure your chocolate is gluten free too.

The Best Flourless Chocolate Cake Ever

Ingredients

  • 200g gluten free chocolate (at least 75% cacao/cocoa)
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 5 eggs, separated
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1Tb instant coffee granules (optional, if you’re not a coffee drinker)
  • pinch salt
  • 1/2Tb vanilla essence
  • 60g chocolate chips of choice (milk, dark or even white for an added difference)

Method

  1. Preheat your oven to 180C (160C fan forced).
  2. Grease a 20cm springform pan with butter and line with baking paper. (Pro tip: Trace around the outside of your pan on the baking paper and cut it to size. Measure the depth of the pan (mine is 6cm), then cut strips to lay around the circumference. This will leave the outside of your cakes with a smooth finish.)
  3. Break your chocolate into pieces and place in a porcelain bowl along with the oil. Nest the bowl over a small saucepan of water and heat the water to simmer. Stir the chocolate and oil mix until melted and combined, then turn off the heat. Remove the bowl from the saucepan and set it aside to cool slightly.
  4. In another bowl, combine the rest of your ingredients except for the chocolate chips and egg whites. Whisk if you can but a fork will do the trick if you don’t have a whisk. Add your slightly cooled melted chocolate and whisk again.
  5. In yet another bowl, use electric beaters to whip the egg whites into stiff white peaks. (Beginner’s tip: make sure your bowl and beaters are perfectly dry or the eggs won’t form peaks.)
  6. Fold in the beaten egg whites into the chocolate mixture in several additions. Try not to ‘beat’ the mixture as you want to preserve as much air in the egg whites as you go. Continue gently until the mixture is fully combined, then stir in the chocolate chips.
  7. Pour the batter into your springform pan. Bake for approximately 25 minutes then check how it is going. (My oven is a bit slow so it takes a bit over 30 minutes in mine.) The cake is cooked when the surface has begun to crack and it springs back when lightly pressed.
  8. Take it out of the oven and set it on the stovetop to cool in the pan. It will fall from the top and shrink in from the sides. Once it’s done this, you can carefully release the springform pan from the sides and leave it to fully cool.
  9. Serve with a dusting of icing sugar, berries of choice, whipped cream or ice cream. It goes well with an espresso coffee or even a liquor coffee! Enjoy!

 

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This teacup set belonged to my great grandmother! It’s at least one hundred years old and it only comes out for special occasions 🙂

 

Order The Cake Maker’s Wish here.

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Feel the Love at Goodness Gracious Cafe

20160524_105802LOVE. This is the first word that comes to mind when I think of Goodness Gracious Gluten Free & Organic Cafe in Yandina on the Sunshine Coast. The women who run this charming abode (Jill and Nicky) radiate love.

But I’ll get back to this. For now, I’m going to sidestep a little to a time in my life when I was really sick. Stay with me…

About thirteen years ago, my health was in a terrible mess, diagnosed with chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), Hashimoto’s Disease, hypothyroidism, a host of rheumatological issues and more. It was an intensely frightening time, unable to work to make the money I needed for the many treatments that doctors and natural therapists claimed would help. Unable to afford them, I had to make Big Life Decisions. But one of the easiest decisions I made was that I needed to invest the little amount of money I had into FOOD. It was clear to me that high quality food would be the basis of everything after that.

I started going to the Northey Street City Farm organic markets each week. And then for whatever reason, I found myself drawn to eating at Govinda’s (Hare Krishna) cafe in Brisbane city. Something that deeply impressed me about the Hare Krishna lifestyle was how important food was in their service and spirituality. So much so, I was told, that to be a person elevated to a food prep position was something of an honour, something that had to be earned. To prepare food in a Hare Krishna kitchen included loving and blessing the food before it was eaten.

Call me crazy if you like, but I felt some deep healing on those Sunday evenings spent at Govinda’s.

And this takes me back to Goodness Gracious Cafe. From the moment you pull up on the footpath you are surrounded by love–in the welcoming chalkboard signs; in the organic garden that’s lovingly tended by these women; in the heart-shaped art pieces hanging from the ceiling; in the locally-made handmade artworks for sale; in the groups of women knitting at the tables, with their rows of stitches becoming blankets for the homeless in the local area; and most certainly, most definitely, in the food.

Everything here is baked on site inside this post-war home on stumps–a home that has a fascinating history including being a railway station master’s home and having had a resident spirit called ‘Alfred’ walking the rooms (who was later ‘released’ when his daughter, who’d also lived in the home, happened upon the cafe and took him home with her).

Jill and Nicky and their friendly staff are always there with a warm smile, knowing many of their customers by name. Their gratitude for living their dream is evident, with the cafe and its customers supporting more than half a dozen different charities, both local and overseas. And their gastronomic creations never let you down.

My favourites include the Turkish delight hot chocolate (with real rose water); the chocolate, blueberry and lavender mud cake (seriously, you MUST try this!); the banana pancakes with homemade caramel sauce and banana ‘nice cream’ (dairy free); the chicken crepes and salad; the paleo lemon bar; and, well, pretty much everything else on the menu too.

There is some kind of deep wisdom that tells us that to provide food with love, and to eat food with love, is one of the most powerful things we can do. That’s why so many of our memories involve food with loved ones. That’s why we say ‘you are what you eat’. That’s why we go home for a ‘home cooked meal’. That’s why we make our loved ones soup when they’re ill.

Hippocrates is reported to have said, “Let food be thy medicine.”

Whether it’s intentional or not, the love and care that comes from these women’s hands infuses every mouthful. Just like my time at Govinda’s all those years ago, I come away from Goodness Gracious every time feeling blessed, nurtured and a little bit healed. And I walk away feeling that the world is a good place after all.

 

Goodness Gracious Cafe: 3 Conn St, Yandina. 

Opening Hours

Mon – Fri  8:00am – 4:00pm

Saturday  7:00am – 2:00pm & Sunday  7:00am – 1:00pm

(This post is part of a series of fortnightly reviews by Josephine Moon and Ashley Jubinville of healthy places to eat on the Sunshine Coast.)

 

The Beekeeper’s Secret has taken flight!

I am so very proud to let you know that my third foodie fiction novel, The Beekeeper’s Secret, has taken flight and is now out on the shelves around Australia and New Zealand (and will be out in the UK/Ireland in July).

I had a great time down in Sydney last week launching this book and was thrilled to be invited to Booktopia to sign a couple of hundred books (which you can order your signed copy here). And I was very blessed to have my friend, Ashley Jubinville, to accompany me, spending an extraordinary number of hours creating a stunning beehive cake for the morning tea spectacular with my publishers.

Thank you to everyone who has bought the book so far and for those who’ve sent me great feedback and/or taken the time to write reviews online. It is much appreciated.

Fly free, little book xx

Roses in My Creative Life

Rose oil meringue, rose water cream, crystalised rose petals, and non-alcoholic wine with rose water and fresh mint leaves.
Rose oil meringue, rose water cream, crystalised rose petals, and non-alcoholic wine with rose water and fresh mint leaves.

Did you know that you can eat rose petals? I went a shamefully long time through life without knowing this or experimenting with the divine loveliness of this flower.

I studied aromatherapy some years ago, as part of a massage qualification. I had to complete a semester-long subject in aromatherapy. Like many people, I didn’t realise what aromatherapy was really all about. It’s name suggests it’s about smelling things. And that’s certainly a big part of it. But it should really be called something like ‘essential oil therapy’. It’s also sometimes now called ‘aromatic medicine’ or as part of ‘botanical medicine’ sitting alongside herbology and naturopathy.

So I walked into that first lecture thinking, gosh, what a waste of time! And I walked out a complete convert, and changed my qualification the very next day to specialise in this amazing healing science.

But I digress. Back to the roses.

Rose essential oil is a wonderous oil, exceptionally complex, with over three hundred chemical compounds, many of which are still unidentified. (Therefore, a synthetic version is not a complete version of rose oil.) It is fantastically healing for all sorts of emotional situations and physical ones too.

I’ve often used rose water (a byproduct of the distillation of rose petals) into cakes, icing and beverages. And this weekend just gone, I wanted to take that a step further and use the actual rose essential oil in baking, as well as rose water, and crystalise some rose petals too.

Although I’d made tea out of fresh rose petals from my garden (while I was writing The Tea Chest), until I made this rose meringue I’d never actually eaten rose petals. They are wonderful. The flavour is so much more intense than I imagined it would be because rose tea (from fresh petals) is actually very subtle. The full-bodied flowers are sensational! I highly recommend them.

(Note: You must not eat roses that have been sprayed with chemicals and that most likely rules out any you buy in the shop. Try farmers’ markets where you can get accurate information about the source of the roses, or do as I did and just take them from your garden!)