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I love to cook, I've always loved to cook.

As a young girl, my time was spent reading the cookbooks that mum kept in the bottom kitchen drawer. Always looking for a new recipe to try, a new food idea. Many weekends were spent making rainbow cakes with as many colours as possible – have you seen my Instagram, not much has changed, and looking for recipes that I could cook using what was available in the cupboard or from the vegetable garden.

At the aged of about 16, I remember stating that I wanted to leave the farm and travel the world. This would be followed by retiring by about 30 and moving back to South Gippsland to grow vegetables and cook. From 16 fast forward 20 years and I returned, starting Jacican Food Studio in Mirboo North, Gippsland where I grow vegetables and cook. This blog is where I share my food adventure.


A recipe for Lemon Treacle Tart from Jacican


As we are up to Website Number 3, I am flashing back to my first ever post on my first Jacican website.

This recipe came about after watching a Gordon Ramsay show where he worked with (or it could have been 'belittled') convicts in a jail. He had them make a Lemon Treacle Tart to sell. His recipe used lemon curd and the base consisted of crushed biscuits. At about that time, I made my first batch of Bush Lemon Marmalade. The batch had not quite reached setting point, therefore was a little bit runny. This made it perfect to use in the Lemon Treacle Tart.

I also go to the effort of making a fresh shortcrust tart case instead of using the crushed biscuit base.

Once a month I make a fresh batch of lemon curd. This year has been a great year for lemons and my first from my own trees. This year I've have had regulars turn up with buckets of lemons and at one stage having about 200 lemons to use up. There was lemon curd, lemon marmalade, pickled lemons, lemons preserved in salt and sugar.

We make lemon curd and other flavor curds in my Pastry - tarts cooking classes, as well as occasionally at a Long Lunch



3 fresh lemons (juice and zest)
150gms cream
195gms caster sugar
4 eggs plus
1 large egg yolk

A recipe for Moonshine Pie from Jacican

I'm always on the look out for local products I can create new recipes from. And as it turns out, you can make a pie from beer.

In Mirboo North, we have the Grand Ridge Brewery and what better play on words than to make a Moonshine Pie out of their 8.5% extra strong pure malt beer - Moonshine.

Recipe - Moonshine Pie



1 portion of Sablee pastry

200 grams brown sugar

2 tablespoons unsalted butter

2 eggs

150ml Moonshine* 
 The ingredients for moonshine pie


Roll out the pastry  Roll pastry between two sheets of baking paper 

Roll out the sablee pastry between 2 sheets of baking paper. The sablee pastry has a tendency to be very sticky, so you may want to put it back in the fridge between each step.

Ready to line the tin  Lining the tin  Prick the tart base with a fork

Line and grease a 23 cm tart tin. Line with sablee pastry. Due to the stickiness of the pastry I normally put the tart case back in the fridge of about 20 minutes before removing the top sheet of baking paper. Prick the bottom of the tart case with a fork. this allows the tart case to cook and breath during the cooking stage. The pie is not blind baked and we all love one less step.

Add sugar to the tart base  Add butter to the sugar  

Place the brown sugar evenly in the tart case. Place the butter randomly on top of the sugar.

150ml of Moonshine Beer Add two eggs Beat the egg and beer together

Place 150 mls of beer in a bowl. Crack in the two eggs and beat together to combine.

 Add butter to the sugar

Pour on top of the sugar and butter. Bake in a 180C oven for 45 minute or until cooked through.

The finished Moonshine Pie

Can be eaten hot, warm or cold. Serve with cream.


My annual Curry in a Un-Hurry dinner is just around the corner at Jacican. This year I will be featuring as Sri Lankan beef curry as one of the main courses and the hottest curry on the menu.

The most important part of learning to cook curry is balancing your base spices. So let's start with the authentic Sri Lankan curry powder I'll be using in the restaurant.


You will need:

1 tablespoon of coriander seeds

1 teaspoon of cumin seeds

1/2 teaspoon of fennel seeds

1/2 teaspoon of fenugreek Seed

1 cinnamon quill

Dry roast everything off in a pan. For this batch, I have made 4 times the recipe so that I have plenty of the mix to use later. The beauty of roasted spice is that it can be stored for lengthy periods of time in an airtight container without losing potency of flavor.

In the pan

Once the aroma is lifting off of the pan, grind the mix in a food processor or with a mortar and pestle until you have a fine powder.


This Spice mix is a great base to start experimenting with in your curry crusade. Simply add your fresh and liquid ingredients and work towards something like my hot Sri Lankan Beef Curry.

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