The Land Cookery

Jan Young

The Land Cookery Competition is sponsored by The Land newspaper. The competition is is open to any person residing in NSW or ACT. Contact your nearest branch for information on the local competition. Entires for the cake decorating section (Section 6) can go straight to State Finals and do not need to go to branch or group competitions. State Finals are held at the Annual Conference in May.

Below is The Land Cookery Schedule, The Land Cookery Recipes and the Donna Latter Chocolate Cake.


Fruit cake tins:  Some being presented in tins which are smaller on the bottom.  We realise it may be difficult to purchase the original straight sided tins but these are much preferred - same size, top and bottom.

Chocolate in fruit cakes: The use of chocolate in fruit cakes is not acceptable for competition.

If a recipe states "sugar", it means white sugar and of course most people prefer to use caster sugar as it dissolves more readily.  If icing sugar or brown sugar are called for, then it will stipulate this in the ingredients list.

Loaf tins and bar tins: Certain recipes will call for either a loaf tin or a bar tin. A loaf tin is slightly flared so your loaf is wider at the top than it is at the base and had rounded corners. A bar tin is the same width at the top and the bottom with sharp tight angled corners.

‘The Land’ Cookery Schedule 2019/2020


1. This Contest is conducted by the Country Women’s Association of NSW.

2. The Contest is not restricted to members of the CWA; it is open to any person residing in NSW.

3. Entries at branch level to be accompanied by 80 cents entry fee. Entries at state level must be accompanied by the official printed current 2019/2020 coupon which will appear fortnightly in “The Land” newspaper, otherwise they will be disqualified. Each entry requires a separate coupon. Entries must be lodged with the Cookery Officer of a CWA branch and contestants may enter in one branch and one group only. Entries in state finals must be accompanied by the original coupon.

4. Each branch conducts its separate contest at any time that is considered suitable. First and second prize winners must be two different competitors who will then be eligible to enter group semi-finals. This is a competition that is conducted from branch to group and then to state level. Branches cannot enter directly into group semi-finals.

5. First prize winners only of group semi-finals are eligible for the state final conducted concurrently with the CWA Annual General Conference. (This does not apply in Section 6).

6. Additional classes, other than those on the schedule, may be included in branch contests, and additional prizes awarded locally, but prize winners in such classes will not compete in the semi-finals or state finals of the contest.

7. Branches and groups will appoint their own judges, BUT judges and stewards for the state finals will be appointed by the CWA State Land Cookery Chairperson.

8. All exhibits entered in this contest (except in Section One, Classes A and B, and Section Seven) may be sold at branch and group level. All exhibits (except Section Six) become the property of CWA at state level.

9. The Judges decisions are absolutely final and not to be questioned or discussed with the judges.

10. The 80 cents entry fee with each entry form, plus proceeds of the sales of entries, and any other monies raised at the same function, shall be sent through group treasurer to CWA State Office NOT “The Land” Office.

11. All entries in the state finals will be displayed and then sold except Section Six. Proceeds of the sale to be added to the Cookery Contest funds.

12. No ring tin is to be used throughout the contest. NO RACK MARKS ON ENTRIES.


14. Owners may purchase their exhibit, if they inform the steward when entering their exhibit at state level.

15. All entries must be accompanied by a filled in CWA approved label, which will be affixed to the product after judging.

16. IMPORTANT All fruit cakes and sultana cakes must be entered uniced. ALL FRUIT CAKES MUST OBSERVE the 250g BUTTER BASIS as standard mixture for size and weight. Tins may be square or round in judging. The method of cutting right through the centre of the cake must be observed. NO CUT CAKE WILL BE ACCEPTED AT STATE FINALS but fruit cake, sultana cake and fruit pudding CAN be entered cut at group semi–finals.

Section 1: Fruit Cakes

Prizes in Class: (a) First $120, Second $80, Third $40

Prizes in Class: (b) First $80, Second $60, Third $40, Total $440

Class (a) Rich Fruit Cake

Hints to competitor: In the fruit cake, nuts, if used should be cut to a size that will not interfere with the cutting of the cake. Slow baking is necessary to bring out the colour and texture. Size of tin, round or square, is 20 cm.

A suggestion is 250 g butter, 1250 g fruit and 250 g brown sugar.

Points to be looked for in judging: A smooth, even top, well risen and slightly rounded towards the centre, but not peaked. Smooth, even sides with no white patches or blotches on the surface. Browned evenly on sides, top and bottom. Texture should be fine and even, with no holes or tunnels: moist but not heavy or doughy. Fruit should be evenly distributed and a good balance of fruit and mixture apparent. Should not be over-flavoured with spices and essence so that the natural flavour of the fruits is lost. No almonds are allowed on top. Your own favourite recipe may be used.

Class (b) Sultana Cake

Hints to competitor: 250 g butter basis is standard mixture for size and weight to be observed. A suggested guide for proportion of fruit and mixture is 250 g butter, 250 g sugar and not more than 500 g sultanas. Size of tin can be round or square, 20 cm.

Points to be looked for in judging: Evenly cooked on top, sides and bottom, and light in colour. Texture fine and even with no holes or tunnels, moist, but not heavy or doughy. Fruit should be evenly distributed and a good balance of fruit and mixture apparent. Cherries and peel not acceptable. No almonds allowed on top. Sultanas must not be cut.

Section 2: Butter Cakes

Prizes in Class: (a) First $50, Second $30, Third $20

Prizes in Class: (b) First $50, Second $30, Third $20, Total $200

Important: In judging, the method of cutting right through the centre of the cake must be observed.


Class (a) Lime and Buttermilk Cake

To be cooked in a round 20 cm tin, white glacé icing on top only, no decorations. Recipe in June 2018 journal MUST be used.

Class (b) Peach Blossom Cake

To be cooked in a 20 cm round tin, pink glacé icing on top only, no decorations. Recipe in June 2019 journal MUST be used.

Section 3: Date Loaf

Prizes: First $40, Second $30, Third $20, Total $90

To be cooked in a Loaf tin, approximately 14 x 24 cm, un-iced. Recipe in June 2018 journal MUST be used.

Section 4: Petticoat Tail Shortbread

Prizes: First $40, Second $30, Third $20, Total $90

To be presented as a circle of eight (8) Petticoat tails, approximately 16cm round. Recipe in June 2018 journal MUST be used.

Section 5: Honey Jumbles

Prizes: First $40, Second $30, Third $20, Total $90

Six (6) to be presented, approximately 7cm x 3cm, Iced on top with three (3) white and three (3) Pale Pink. Recipe in June 2018 journal MUST be used.

Section 6: Cake Decorations And Sugar Art

Prizes in Class: (a) First $120, Second $80, Third $60. Prizes in Class: (b) First $80, Second $40, Third $20. Prizes in Class: (c) First $80, Second $40, Third $20. Prizes in Class: (d) First $50, Second $30, Third $20. Prizes in Class: (e) First $40, Second $30, Third $20. Prizes in Class: (f) First $40, Second $30, Third $20, Total $820

Class (a) Fruit and Foliage

Champion Class. Exhibit to be no more than 2 tiers, Maximum Board size 45cm x 45cm

Class (b) Pearls and Pansies

Single Tier Cake. Board Maximum size 35cm x 35cm

Class (c) Nursery Rhyme

Creative Sugar Art—An imaginative & creative piece of sugar work. No cake required. Wooden sticks/skewers used as supports permitted. Maximum Board size 35cmx35cm.

Class (d) Miniature Decorated Cake—Wedding Day

Two (2) or more cakes fit inside a 15cm square. Decorations scaled to size.

Class (e) Open, Sugar Art Plaque—Marine Life

Must be displayed on a 25cm x 25cm board with cleats or on stand. Finished plaque must NOT exceed 25cm x 25cm.

Class (f) Novice Section—Bold and Beautiful

Board maximum size 35cm x 35cm

NOTE: A novice is classified as a decorator who has never won a 1st prize in this particular class or similar class in any competition.

Conditions of Entry for Cake Decorations and Sugar Art (Rules to be enforced)

i. These sections are judged on appearance only. Dummy cakes may be used but must be stipulated when entered.

ii. Wire, tape, tulle, fabric ribbon, braid, cord, stamens and manufactured pillars are permitted.

iii. Manufactured ornaments, flowers, computer imaging, leaves or dried stems MAY NOT BE USED.

iv. Cleats MUSR be attached to the base of the presentation board.

v. NO WIRES may be inserted directly into the cake—a posy pick or substitute is acceptable if the top edge is visible.


$1 entry fee must be paid at State. Entries must be clearly identified in their right class. Entries in this section may be retained by the competitor. Exhibits in this section may be entered directly into the finals and need not pass preliminary judging in Branch or Group contests.

One entry in each class only.

Section 7: Steamed Fruit Pudding

Prizes: First $120, Second $80, Third $60, Total $260

A suggested guide: 250 g butter, 250 g brown sugar and approximately 1250 g fruit basis as standard mixture for size and weight. To present with a minimum weight of 1.5kgs.

Points to be looked for in judging: Fruit evenly cut. Flavour rich and mellow. Should have sultanas, currants, raisins and peel. Dates are allowed but NOT CHERRIES. Should be dark but not overdone. A good shape with no holes and no soggy, wet or mouldy patches.

Section 8: Jam, Pickles & Relish

Prizes in each Class: First $40, Second $30, Third $20, Total $270

Class (a) Strawberry Jam

Recipe in June 2018 Journal must be used

Class (b) Quick and Easy Pomegranate Jelly

Recipe in June 2018 Journal must be used

Class (c) Pickled Pears

Recipe in June 2019 Journal must be used.

IMPORTANT: Unopened jars must be unlabelled at State Conference. Jams, pickles and relish are to be presented in approximately 375ml jars. Correct size jars will be available to purchase at State Conference. Jars must be correctly labelled at branch and group days only. Commercial tops to be covered with coloured contact. Contestants are advised to retain some unopened jars of the same batch, as jars opened at branch and group contests are not eligible for state finals.

Points to be looked for in judging: Jams should be of good appearance and colour, and to be softly set, but not too sticky or watery. Fruit should be well cooked and quite soft, with no particles or crystallisation, mould or fermentation, and not over cooked. Jelly should be clear, hold shape when sample taken and gently quiver on the spoon. Flavour is the deciding factor.

Section 9: Gluten-Free Orange Ricotta Pound Cake

Prizes: First $40, Second $30, Third $20, Total $90

To be cooked in a loaf tin. Recipe in June 2019 journal MUST be used.

Section 10: Plain Traditional Sponge

Prizes: First $60, Second $40, Third $20, Total $120

Two x 20 cm round cake tins.  Red jam filled for Branch and Group but Group finalist to be sent to State Finals UNFILLED. No icing sugar or dusting allowed on top.

Hints to the Competitor: Layers to be evenly risen, identical in thickness and baking.  Top should be smooth and without sugar spots.  Texture should be fine, delicate and spongy when lightly pressed with fingertips.  Leave Uniced.

The use of cornflour is permitted. Own recipe to be used.

Section 11: Special Section For Young Competitors

Prizes: First $20 (plus award), Second $ 15, Third $10, Total $90

Award Donated by ‘The Land’ Cookery Committee.

Class (a) Cinnamon Tea Cake - 18 years and under as of 31 March 2020

To be cooked in a round 20cm tin, cinnamon topping as per recipe. Recipe in June 2018 journal MUST be used.

Class (b) Decorated Butter Biscuits - 12 years and under as at 31 March 2020

Four (4) to be presented, 5cm rounds decorated with 100’s and 1000’s. Recipe in June 2018 journal MUST be used.

Special ‘The Land’ Awards For Branches Judged On Ratio of Members Entries

Branches with 15 members and under with most entries in Cookery Competition: First $150, Second $75, Third $25, Total $250

Branches 16 to 25 members with most entries in Cookery Competition: First $150, Second $75, Third $25, Total $250

Branches 26 to 50 members with most entries in Cookery Competition: First $150, Second $75, Third $25, Total $250

Branches over 51 members with most entries in Cookery Competition:

First $150, Second $75, Third $25, Total $250

All entries will be considered but flavour and eating quality will be the deciding factor—except in Section 6.


The Land Cookery Recipes 2019/2020

Download a PDF of The Land Cookery 2019/20 recipes here.

Lime and Buttermilk Cake—Section 2, Class A

Recipe MUST be used


250g butter, softened
220g (1 cup) caster sugar
1 tablespoon finely grated lime zest
3 eggs, separated
300g (2 cups) self-raising flour
250ml (1 cup) buttermilk
1-2 tablespoons lime juice


Preheat oven to moderate (180°C). Grease a 20cm (8in) round cake tin and line base with baking paper.

Cream butter, sugar and lime zest in a small mixing bowl until pale and creamy. Add and beat in egg yolks one at a time until combined. Transfer to a large mixing bowl.

Stir in half of the sifted flour, half of the buttermilk and half of the lime juice, then stir in the balance of the sifted flour, buttermilk and lime juice.

Whisk egg whites until soft peaks form. Fold in about half of the whites into mixture then fold in remainder—it will mix in better. Spread into the prepared tin.

Bake for about one hour or until cooked. Stand for 10 minutes before turning out.

Cover the top only with a thin layer of white glace icing flavoured with lime juice.


Peach Blossom Cake—Section 2, Class B

Recipe MUST be used


190g butter at room temperature, chopped
1¼ cups white sugar
¾ cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
1½ cups plain flour
¾ cup corn flour
1½ level teaspoon baking powder
pinch of salt
6 egg whites—at room temperature
1–2 drops rose-pink food coloring


1½ cups icing sugar
10g butter
2 tablespoons boiling water
few drops of rose-pink food coloring


Pre-heat the oven to slow (150°C). Grease a 20cm round, deep cake tin. Line the base of the tin with baking paper.

Cream the butter and sugar in the small bowl of an electric mixer until white and fluffy. Gradually add half the milk to help dissolve the sugar and beat well. Beat in the vanilla. Transfer to a larger bowl.

Sift the flour, corn flour, baking powder and salt together three times. Fold into the butter mixture, then add the remaining milk. In another bowl, use clean beaters to beat the egg whites to stiff peaks. Fold half the egg whites into the cake batter, then fold in the remaining egg whites.

Transfer 1 cup of the mixture to a smaller bowl and stir in the drops of food coloring. Take about ¾ cup of the white mixture and spread over the base of the tin. Take half the pink batter and spoon it in a ring about 1 cm in from the edge of the tin—it should be about 1–1.5cm wide.

Very carefully spread half the remaining white batter over, taking care not to disturb the pink ring. Spoon the remaining pink batter into the center of the tin, making a round of about 8 cm. Spoon the rest of the white batter over the whole top, again taking care not to disturb the pink round.

Bake for about 70 minutes, until the cake is springy to a gentle touch in the center and comes away from the sides of the tin. It may appear slightly cracked in the center but should settle flat on cooling. Turn out onto a clean tea towel lined with a sheet of baking paper. Leave to cool.

To make the icing, combine the ingredients until smooth. Spread over the top of the cooled cake and leave to set.

Date Loaf—Section 3

Recipe MUST be used


1 ½ cup chopped dates
¾ cup sugar
115g butter, room temperature
½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 cup boiling water
1 egg
1 ¾ cup self-raising flour
1 tsp ground nutmeg


Heat oven 160°C. Prepare a 14 x 24cm (5 x 9 inch) loaf tin—grease and line base with strip of baking paper.
Place dates, sugar, butter and bicarbonate in a bowl and add the cup of boiling water. Set aside to cool to just warm.
Add the egg, lightly beaten, sifted flour and nutmeg, and stir into the wet ingredients until mixed.
Bake for 50 to 60 minutes or until cooked.
Cool 10 minutes in tin before turning out onto a tea towel covered cake rack.

Petticoat Tails Shortbread—Section 4

Recipe MUST be usedPetticoat Tails Shortbread - CWA of NSW


115g unsalted butter, chopped into cubes
30g castor sugar
30g pure icing sugar
¾ tablespoon cornflour
1 cup (150g) plain flour
¼ tsp salt


Preheat oven to moderately slow (170°C). Line a baking tray with baking paper.
Cut a 16cm circle of extra baking paper and fold into 8, cut a small snip in the corners of each fold—open up again and set aside.

In a medium size mixing bowl combine the butter, sugars and cornflour, and work together with your hand, until the ingredients are mixed.

Add the sifted flour and salt, and mix until it leaves the sides of the bowl and clump together
Place the dough on a lightly floured surface and gently form into a smooth ball. Flatten and then roll out into a circle, approximately 10mm thick. Carefully lift onto the tray and place the circle of paper over the shortbread and gently roll over the top and you will have some fold marks imprinted onto the shortbread which you can now cut in segments with a sharp knife.

Cut all the way through the dough, but leave the wedges close together.

Make indents around the outer edge of the circle, and then pinch it, creating three or four even pinches in each segment. Prick the shortbread with a fork for a decorative pattern.

Bake in the oven for 20 to 25 minutes until crisp and a tint of colour is showing.

Leave the shortbread to cool on the tray and when still slightly warm, use a sharp knife to cut through the segments and create petticoat tails.

Iced Honey Jumbles—Section 5

Recipe MUST be used


75g butter, chopped
½ cup honey
1½ cups plain flour
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp mixed spice
½ tsp bicarb soda
1½ tbsp milk
1 egg white
1½ cups icing sugar
Pink food colouring


Preheat the oven to moderate (180°C), and line 2 baking trays with baking paper.
Combine the butter and honey in a small saucepan and stir over medium-low heat until melted and smooth. Set aside to cool slightly.

Sift the dry ingredients into a large bowl and make a well in the centre. Add the honey mixture and milk, and stir with a wooden spoon until smooth. Cover with plastic wrap and put in fridge for 30 minutes, until firm.

Divide the dough into two equal portions. Divide one portion into 10 even-sized pieces, and roll into little log shapes 7cm long. Place onto prepared trays and pat slightly to flatten. Repeat with the remaining dough.

Bake for 12 minutes, until lightly browned around the edges and slightly cracked on top. Cool on trays for 5 minutes, then move to a wire rack to cool completely before icing.

To make the icing, whisk the egg white in a medium bowl until frothy. Sift the icing sugar over the egg white and stir until smooth. Divide the icing in half and tint one portion with pink food colouring. Spread icing over the cooled biscuits. Leave to set.


Strawberry Jam—Section 8, Class A

Recipe MUST be used

Determine the mass of the fruit after removing the stalks.

Use 750g of sugar to every kilogram of fruit. Add 30ml of lemon juice to every 1.5kg of fruit.

Pack the fruit and sugar in alternate layers in a stainless steel or enamel saucepan. Leave for two hours or overnight.

Put the saucepan on a cool part of the stove. Heat slowly, while stirring occasionally until the sugar has dissolved.

Boil fairly rapidly until the jam is ready. Stir occasionally to prevent burning.

Test a tablespoon or so on a chilled saucer, drawing a finger through the cooled strawberry jam and check whether the line stays clean and the juices don’t come back together. If they do, continue cooking.

Skim off any foam and pour into hot, sterilised jars, seal immediately while still hot.

Quick and Easy Pomegranate Jelly—Section 8, Class B

Recipe MUST be used


4 cups pomegranate juice
6 cups white sugar
2 lemons juiced
44 gm Jamsetta


Sterilize jars and keep warm ready for the jelly.

Combine pomegranate and lemon juice with Jamsetta and bring to boil over heat, stirring often.

Add sugar and bring back to boil for 1-2 minutes, stirring often. Turn heat off and fill the jars.

Skim off any foam either before bottling or let it settle to the top in the jar and remove before sealing.


Pickled Pears— Section 8, Class C

Recipe MUST be used (new recipe 2019)


10 medium/large beurre bosc pears
1 tsp allspice berries
12 whole cloves
2 cups vinegar (use ½ white and ½ malt or apple)
1 stick of cinnamon—broken
2½ cm chopped fresh ginger
2 cups white sugar


Peel, core and slice the pears into 8 wedges.

Slowly bring the rest of the ingredients to a boil stirring till sugar dissolves.

Add pears and simmer till tender.

Drain with slotted spoon and add pears to sterilized hot jars.

Boil remaining syrup till thickened and top the pears in the jars with this syrup.

Seal immediately and store in fridge when opened.


Gluten Free Orange Ricotta Pound Cake—Section 9

Recipe MUST be used


160gm butter
1 ½ cups sugar
375gm fresh or packaged ricotta cheese
3 large eggs
Grated zest of 1 orange
2 tablespoons orange juice
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
½ teaspoon almond essence
1½ cups plain gluten free flour
2½ level teaspoons gluten free baking powder


Preheat Oven to 160°C. Prepare a loaf tin (not a bar tin).

Sift together the dry ingredients, set aside.

Cream together butter, sugar and ricotta cheese until light and creamy. Add eggs, one at a time. Add orange zest, orange juice and essences. Beat until combined.

Add dry ingredients a little at a time beating until just incorporated. Spoon mixture into prepared tin, smooth top.

Bake for 50-60 minutes or until cooked. Depending on the density of the ricotta used, this may take 1¼ hours to fully cook.

Cool in tin for ten minutes, before turning out to finish cooling on a covered rack.

Plain Traditional Sponge—Section 10

Your own recipe to be used.

A 20cm sponge sandwich filled with a red jam. The use of cornflour is permitted.

Layers to be evenly risen, identical in thickness and baking. Top should be smooth and without sugar spots. Texture should be fine, delicate and spongy when lightly pressed with fingertips. No icing sugar or dusting allowed on top.


Cinnamon Teacake—Section 11, Class A

Recipe MUST be used


Melted butter to grease
100g butter, at room temperature, cubed
110g (½ cup) caster sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
1 egg, at room temperature
150g (1 cup) self-raising flour
80ml (⅓ cup) milk, at room temperature

Cinnamon topping
1 tablespoon caster sugar
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
20g butter, melted


Preheat oven to 180°C or 160°C fan-forced.

Grease a shallow 20cm round cake tin with melted butter and line the base with baking paper.

Beat butter, sugar and vanilla until pale and creamy. Add the egg and beat until well-combined. On low speed, beat in half the flour, then the milk, and then the remaining flour until just combined.

Spoon into the prepared tin and use the back of a spoon to smooth the surface.

Bake in the preheated oven for 30 minutes or until golden and a skewer inserted in the center comes out clean. Stand in the tin for 5 minutes before transferring to tea towel covered cake rack.

To make the cinnamon topping, combine the sugar and cinnamon. Brush the top of the warm cake with the melted butter and sprinkle the cinnamon sugar mixture evenly over the top of the cake.

Decorated Butter Biscuits—Section 11, Class B

Recipe MUST be used


250g butter, at room temperature
125g (¾ cup) icing sugar mixture
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
300g (2 cups) plain flour
70g (½ cup) custard powder
2 tablespoons milk
100’s & 1000’s to decorate


Heat oven to 180°C.
Beat butter and sugar in a bowl until pale and creamy. Beat in vanilla. Add the sifted flour, custard powder and then the milk. Stir until a soft dough forms. Turn out onto a well-floured surface and bring together and shape into a disc.

Cover with plastic wrap and rest in fridge for ½ to 1 hour.

Roll out dough approximately 5mm thick and cut into rounds using a serrated 5cm scone cutter. Place on a greased tray and decorate with about ¼ tsp of 100’s & 1000’s sprinkles. Press in slightly with the back of a teaspoon so that they don’t roll off.

Bake for approximately 12-14 minutes in oven until golden.


Donna Latter's Chocolate Cake


125g butter

1 ¾ cups self raising flour

1 ¼ cups caster sugar

½ teaspoon bicarbonate soda

2 eggs

1 cup milk

2 tablespoons cocoa


1.    Place all ingredients into a bowl & beat well until the chocolate mixture changes colour & all the ingredients are combined. A processor can be used if desired.

2.    Grease & line a 20cm tin (round or square).

3.    Pour the mixture into the tin. Bang the tine slightly to even out the mixture.

4.    Cook in a moderate oven for about 1 hour (this will depend on your oven) until cake is cooked.

5.    TIP: If when touched in the centre, the cake comes away from the sides of the tin it is ready.

6.    When cool, ice on top with chocolate icing.



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