Food traditions + a very famous chocolate cake

comments 4
Be happy / Dessert / Food & Recipes

Every Healthy Day 2 Every Healthy Day 1One thing that has stuck with me since my travels through Europe is the sense of tradition up there. In particular when it comes to food and family.

Singing Swedish Snapsvisor (drinking songs) before Christmas lunch while sipping glögg (hot mulled wine), dunking bread in a sizzling pot of melting cheese in Switzerland and chatting to an Italian café owner about how he makes his buffalo mozzarella are some of my favourite travel memories.

Aussies I’m sorry, but we kinda suck in comparison. Cooking a snag on the barbie within an inch of its life isn’t quite the same as dancing around a maypole in the summertime and eating freshly picked blueberries – something that’s been done for hundreds and hundreds of years.

But what we lack in age-old traditions, I think we make up for in awesome family customs. We all have them! Like watching Chevy Chase in National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation every Christmas eve with cups of tea (yeahh we’re cool), making sausage rolls on AFL grand-final day and sampling my Dad’s annual home-brew. Perhaps we’re not as refined as our European cousins, but these are things that feel like home.

Birthdays in our house were marked in one very special way each year – with the presentation of my Grandma’s famous chocolate cake. Every single thing about that cake reminds me of her – the smell, the square plastic Tupperware container it always arrived in (sometimes left warm on the kitchen bench after school – much to our delight), the shredded coconut topping and my Grandma’s always humble words ‘it’s not my best one, but it’ll do!’

Grandma Joycie is now 95 years old and pretty damn incredible. A diehard Geelong Cats fan, she says the key to a long life is warm lemon water in the morning, eating good food and making sure you look after your eyes. At 95 it’s hard to argue with that logic!

Her recipe isn’t gluten free, dairy free or sugar free. But what it lacks in the world of health blogs it makes up for in many years of tradition and so many happy memories – and sometimes that’s what food is all about, right?
A lifetime of chocolate cake | Every Healthy DayEvery Healthy Day 3

This is my Grandma’s original recipe. The point of this post wasn’t so much to have you try it (you won’t regret it), but more so to get you thinking about your own family traditions, not matter how weird. Write down your Dad’s recipe for lasagne or ask your Nanna how she makes her scones next time you visit.

I can guarantee they’ll be thrilled to bits.

Ebony x

Grandma Joycie’s Famous Chocolate Cake
  • 3 tablespoons butter (softened)
  • 1/2 cup of sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup self raising flour
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 tablespoon cocoa
  • 1/2 cup milk
Chocolate & Coconut Icing
  • 2 teaspoons of butter
  • 1½ cups of icing sugar
  • 1 tablespoon of cocoa
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons of warm water
  • 1/2 cup desiccated coconut
How to go about it
1. Preheat oven  to 350 degrees F
2. Grease round cake tin and line with grease proof paper.
3. Sift dry ingredients, add sugar.
4. Make a hollow in ingredients then add eggs, milk and  then softened butter.
5. Beat for 3 minutes using an electric beater.
6. Pour into prepared cake tin and  bake for 45 minutes
To prepare the icing
Melt the butter in a small saucepan and remove from the heat. Sift the icing sugar and the cocoa in the saucepan, add 1 tablespoon of warm water and mix thoroughly until smooth. Add a little extra water if too thick. Spread evenly over cake once cool, and sprinkle with coconut.

The Author

Aussie food lover, holistic health coach, adventure seeker and marketer. Packing the happy & healthy into every day.


  1. ah great post. It was such a big part of our childhood! I reckon she also sneaks in a banana here and there too… her naturally-sweet secret ingredient!

  2. Alex Dillenbeck says

    Hi, Big fan. Great post. Can I have a shout out? thanks

    From: Every Healthy Day <> Reply-To: Every Healthy Day <> Date: Wednesday, 2 April 2014 7:05 am To: Alex Dillenbeck <> Subject: [New post] Food traditions + a very famous chocolate cake

    Every Healthy Day posted: ” One thing that has stuck with me since my travels through Europe is the sense of tradition up there. In particular when it comes to food and family. Singing Swedish Snapsvisor (drinking songs) before Christmas lunch while sipping glögg (hot mulled win”

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