Matt Stone: The Natural Cook and lemon myrtle cake

There’s some cracking cook books which have been released ahead of Christmas and one that particularly caught my eye is Matt Stone’s The Natural Cook.  Matt is currently winning accolades as the chef at Oakridge in the Yarra Valley and previously cooked at Greenhouse, Silo and Brothl.  

Matt Stone's lovely new cook book The Natural Cook
Matt Stone’s lovely new cook book The Natural Cook

In his restaurants and in this cook book Matt advocates zero waste cooking and ethical eating.   Matt’s philosophies are reflected in lots of recipes for brining and preserving and even instructions for milling your own flour.  This makes some of the recipes in the book pretty labour intensive if you follow them to the letter but there is also some easy inspiration particularly in Matt’s championing of native ingredients.

Inside The Natural Cook...
Inside The Natural Cook…

I tested out his recipe for “Aunt Susie’s Lemon Myrtle cake”. Lemon myrtle is a native ingredient with a sweet but citrusy flavour.  It makes an interesting change from a traditional lemon cake.  The recipe does say to mill your own flour but I used standard flour and it turned out just fine.

Lemon myrtle cake
Lemon myrtle cake

Add this to your Christmas shopping list for foodies with a conscience. That’s all of us right? 

Whipping up the lemon myrtle cake
Whipping up the frosting for the lemon myrtle cake
Lemon Myrtle Cake
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6706 calories
626 g
1226 g
451 g
78 g
206 g
1610 g
1834 g
378 g
13 g
102 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
Amount Per Serving
Calories 6706
Calories from Fat 3914
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 451g
Saturated Fat 206g
Trans Fat 13g
Polyunsaturated Fat 15g
Monounsaturated Fat 87g
Cholesterol 1226mg
Sodium 1834mg
Total Carbohydrates 626g
Dietary Fiber 21g
Sugars 378g
Protein 78g
Vitamin A
Vitamin C
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
  1. 155g macadamia nuts
  2. 180g butter
  3. 150g sugar
  4. 2 eggs
  5. 2 tsp baking powder
  6. 1 tsp bicarb soda
  7. 300g freshly milled flour (I just used normal plain flour)
  8. 185ml buttermilk
  9. 2 tsps dried lemon myrtle
  1. 3 egg whites
  2. 210g caster sugar
  3. 210g butter
  4. 2 tsp dried lemon myrtle
  1. 1. Preheat the oven to 160c and grease a cake tin. Matt uses a 20cm round cake tin but I used a loaf tin which worked fine.
  2. 2. Spread the macadamia nuts evenly on a baking tray and roast for 12 mins or until golden brown then set aside to cool. Turn the oven up to 170c.
  3. 3. Using an electric mixer with a paddle attachment beat the butter until smooth. Add the sugar and cream the two ingredients for 5 mins or until light and fluffy. Add one egg at a time and incorporate slowly, beating for a futher 5 mins.
  4. 4. In a food processor blitz the macadamia nuts to form a rough breadcrumb consistency. add the remaining ingredients and the nuts to the butter mix and beat until smooth.
  5. 5. Pour into a cake tin and bake for 45-50 mins or until lightly golden. Gently press on top of the cake, if it bounces back, it's ready. Remove from oven and cool in tin for 10 mins before inverting on a wire rack.
For the frosting
  1. 6. Fill a medium saucepan one third full of water and place over medium heat. Bring to a light simmer. Put the egg whites and sugar into a stainless steel bowl. Using a whisk briefly mix until the sugar has been incorporates. Place the bowl over the simmering water to create a double boiler and stirring constantly head the mixture until the sugar has dissolved.
  2. 7. Using an electric mixer or hand held electric beaters, whisk the egg mixture at high speed for 10-12 mins it will become white, glossy and thick. Keep whisking until the mixture is cool.
  3. 8. Switch to a paddle attachment and whisk at a medium speed adding the butter in four batches. Beat and until thick and creamy then add the lemon myrtle until combined.
Gourmet Chick
You can find lemon myrtle in big supermarkets or buy online.
You can find lemon myrtle in big supermarkets or buy online.

Gourmet Chick received a review copy of The Natural Cook. 


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