I rarely do desserts, but my wife Leashia is pretty good at them and so is my mumsy !

Click on a recipe below to go straight to it:

Leashia’s Chocolate Mayonnaise Cake

Leashia’s Banoffee Pie

Mumsy’s Syrup steamed sponge pudding

Leashia’s Chocolate Mayonnaise Cake

Mayonnaise in choklit cake? You must be having a laugh? Actually, I’m not. It’s an old American recipe from the great depression when eggs and oil were hard to find. The mayonnaise combines excellently with the choklit and the end result is divine.

My first experience of Chocolate Mayonnaise cake was in my youth when I worked at the rather wonderful Mock Turtle Tea Shop in Brighton, England. Over the last couple of years Leashia has been trying to recreate this recipe and what follows is pretty close to what I remember scoffing at the Mock Turtle all those years ago. So this is her recipe.


For the Cake: 420g plain flour, 320g granulated sugar, 35g cocoa (unsweetened), 2¼ tsp baking powder, 1½ tsp bicarbonate of soda, 350g full fat Hellmann’s mayonnaise, 12 fl oz warm water, 1½ tsp vanilla essence.

For the frosting: 150g softened butter, 50g sieved cocoa (unsweetened), 375g icing sugar,  ⅔ tsp vanilla essence, 3-4 tbs milk.


For the Cake: Grease two 9 x 1½ inch cake tins with removable base, line the bottom of each with greaseproof paper. Sieve the flour, cocoa, baking powder and bicarbonate of soda into a large bowl. Stir in the Hellmann’s mayonnaise. Gradually stir in the water and vanilla until smooth and blended. Pour into the prepared tins and bake at 180/160 (fan) or gas mark 4 for 30 minutes or until the cake springs back when touched. Leave for five minutes before turning out.

For the Frosting: Blend together the softened butter and sieved cocoa powder add the icing sugar, vanilla essence and milk. Whisk the mixture adding a little more milk for softer frosting if required. When the cake is fully cooled, spread the frosting over the upper surface of one cake, place the second cake on top then use the remainder of the frosting to cover the entire cake and decorate as you like. Grunty likes it served with a generous amount of double cream.

Leashia’s Banoffee Pie

This is really easy to make and so popular with our family.


Base: 150g digestive biscuits (crushed) and 60g butter.

Top: 1 tin of condensed milk (boil for approx 2 hours), 3-4 bananas, small carton of double cream, a little icing sugar and grated chocolate or a crushed Cadbury’s Flake to sprinkle over the top (optional).


Melt the butter over a low heat, remove from heat and add to the crushed biscuits. Line an 8″ tin (removable base) with grease proof paper. Press the biscuits firmly over the base of the tin and put in fridge to set.

Boil the condensed milk in a saucepan of water for approximately two hours, cooking it this way creates a thick caramel filling (this can be done well in advance). Carnation do sell a tin of caramel but I find that this is too loose, while it is easier to spread over the bananas than the boiled version, the pie tends to lose it’s shape when removed from the tin. Slice the bananas and lay over the biscuit base (still in the tin) until it is entirely covered. To spread the caramel over the bananas it is best to use a spoon and take shallow scoops of caramel from the tin and lay each scoop of caramel over the bananas – the bigger the area you cover, the less need there is to try to spread it. If you do have a few gaps then use a warm spoon to smooth the caramel (it must cover all of the bananas). Whisk the cream with a little icing sugar to a consistancy that will hold it’s shape but not too stiff to spread and spread over the caramel filling. Sprinkle with grated chocolate or crushed Cadbury’s Flake to decorate if desired.

Mumsy’s syrup steamed sponge pudding.

This has always been one my favrits since I was a boy. It’s an incredibly sweet and decadent pudding. A steam pudding basin with a fitted lid is handy for this.


6oz plain flour plus 1 teaspoon baking powder (or 6oz self raising flour), 2 eggs, 3oz margarine, 3oz caster sugar, vanilla essence, milk, 5 tablespoons of golden syrup (more or less as you like). Cream or vanilla ice cream to serve.


Cream the margarine and sugar (until whiter and fluffy) then add the lightly beaten eggs one at a time and the vanilla essence. Fold in the flour and add one to two tablespoons of milk for a soft dropping consistency. If you have an electric mixer, you can add all of these ingredients together and whisk thoroughly.

Mumsy’s 50 year old puddin’ basin

Grease the basin, put the syrup in the bottom (you can use jam but we don’t!) and tip the mixture on top, cover fully with fitted lid or tinfoil. Steam for one and a half hours checking the water level regularly and topping up with boiling water as necessary. I like it served with double cream.

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