I arrived in New Zealand in the late 80’s and we moved to a peaceful cul de sac in the Christchurch suburb of Casebrook. My neighbour Pearl, would bake goodies on Sunday afternoon and I credit her for introducing me to Kiwi cuisine. I learnt about pikelets and crumpets as well as slices and scones. This fruit and nut squares recipe has been in my collection since then.
180 grams butter
180 grams sugar
1 tablespoon golden syrup
½ teaspoon soda
250 grams dried fruit (apricots, sultanas and dates)
1 egg, lightly beaten
½ cup walnut pieces
180 grams high grade flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
Melt butter, sugar and golden syrup in a large microwave safe bowl. (5-6 minutes on high). Remove from heat. Add soda and dried fruit. Cool slightly. Mix in the egg and walnut pieces. Fold in the flour and baking powder.
Spread into a greased sponge roll tin (approximately 22cms x 26cms) and bake at 160 degrees Celsius for 25 minutes. At the end of cooking, turn off the heat but leave in the oven for another 15 -20 minutes. Allow to cool and dust with icing sugar before cutting into squares.