Betty White Chocolate, Pumpkin and Walnut Cookie

Baking, Side, Snack, Sweets, Thankgiving for being a friend

Despite the fact my girl Betts is the only surviving Golden Girl, I applied yesterday’s logic with Rue – that she’d be upset if I disappeared after catching-up with Bea and Estelle – so decided to stick around in ‘87 to see out this year’s thanksgiving. Well, technically that year’s thanksgiving. But in lieu of this year’s.

Fuck – time travel can be a confusing bitch, no?

I’ve known Bet for years and years, after meeting on the set of Match Game in ‘63. Side note: based on how much fun we had, I suggested Ru do a version on Drag Race … and Snatch Game was born. You’re welcome.

While Betty and I talk on the phone every other day in the present day – I got super paranoid about a Golden curse in 2010/11 after Rue passed away a year after Bea, and she a year after Stell – we weren’t able to see as much of each other as we liked in the ‘80s. I mean, between my various crimes, scams and love affairs and her hit show, we were lucky to catch up once a month.

I rolled up on the lot for the fourth day in a row – talk about deja vu – as Betty raced into my arms for a hug.

“My dear Ben. I’ve missed you! It will be so wonderful to have my turn marking Thanksgiving with you.

“I’ve been so happy all day … Bea wanted to kill me!”

She burst out laughing while a fear gripped me … before I realised it wasn’t the present and she has outlasted the curse thus far. We gossiped and laughed as we drove back to her house. Both thankful, most of all, for each other’s company. And, obviously, my festively approved Betty White Chocolate, Pumpkin and Walnut Cookie.



Yes, cookie. In the singular – this was our first foray into the majesty of the skillet cookie. And dare I say it, we nailed it. Perfect spiced dough combined with the sticky sweet chocolate and pumpkin, and the earthiness of the nuts join together for a perfectly festive dessert.

I mean, how can you not be thankful for nuts in your mouth?

Enjoy and happy Thanksgiving!



Betty White Chocolate, Pumpkin and Walnut Cookie
Serves: 6.

olive oil
½ small butternut pumpkin, cut into a 1cm dice
1 tbsp ground cinnamon
150g unsalted butter, chopped
½ cup firmly packed muscovado sugar
¼ cup raw caster sugar
1 egg, lightly whisked
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 ¾ cup plain flour, sifted
½ tsp bicarb soda, sifted
pinch of freshly ground nutmeg
2 cups white chocolate chips
⅔ cup toasted walnuts, roughly chopped

Preheat oven to 180°C.

Place the pumpkin on a lined baking sheet with a lug of water and a teaspoon of cinnamon. Toss to combine, transfer the tray to the oven and bake for twenty minutes, or until golden and sweet. Allow to cool while you get to work on the cookie.

Combine the butter and sugars in a 20cm, ovenproof skillet and cook over medium heat for a couple of minutes, or until the butter has just melted and everything combined. Remove from heat and allow to cool for 15 minutes.

Whisk the egg and vanilla into the mixture before folding in the flour, bicarb soda, remaining cinnamon and nutmeg until just combined. Fold through the pumpkin, chocolate and walnuts, transfer the skillet to the oven and bake for 20 minutes, or until golden and crisp. Allow to cool for half an hour before serving just warm with ice cream.


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Linda Bundt Cake

Cake, Dessert, Sweets

We often discuss how haters and the cynical would likely assume our friendships are all fake and for attention or to better position ourselves, but hands-on-our-hearts these people are truly our friends (we aren’t Real Housewives here guys) and none are closer to us, than dearest Linda Hunt.

So close, that Linda doesn’t trust anyone but us to cut her hair. We first took over the role of hairdresser the weekend of the ‘84 Oscars; we were on an epic coke binge the night before the show, which was the style of the time. Linds noticed she needed a trim before her moment in the spotlight, so Annelie and I stepped up to the plate and her signature hairstyle was born.

While we have been known to miss the mark on occasion, Linda has never held our relapses that result in Gale-in-Scream 3-esque fringes against us.

The last couple of days have just been a dream; touring the city, gossiping about Mel and Chris and reminiscing about all the good times we have shared. We needed something sweet to cap off her stay, so went with a delicious Linda Bundt Cake.


Linda Bundt Cake_1


I am an absolute fiend for peanut butter and chocolate, so first made the filling as a test of how compatible Linda, Annelie and I were for friendship. Between the salty goodness of the peanut butter and the creamy sweetness of the chocolate, they passed with flying colours and the cake became tradition.



Linda Bundt Cake_2


Linda Bundt Cake
Serves: 8.

Chocolate peanut butter filling
75g plain flour
30g soft unsalted butter
1 tsp ground cinnamon
150g crunchy peanut butter
125g chocolate, melted

300g plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
125g soft unsalted butter
150g caster sugar
2 eggs
250ml sour cream
icing sugar, to garnish

Preheat the oven to 180°C. Generously grease a 23cm bundt tin and place to the side.

First, start on the filling by mixing together the flour and butter with a fork, until you end up with a wet sand looking mixture that clumps together. Then mix in the cinnamon, peanut butter and melted chocolate, to form a sticky, claggy paste. Set aside, it can hang with the bundt tin and bond.

Now on to the cake batter! Combine the flour, baking powder and bicarb into a bowl.

Cream the butter and sugar until light and pale in an electric mixer, then beat in 1 tablespoon of the flour mixture, then 1 egg. Then beat in another tablespoonful of flour mixture, you guessed it, followed by the remaining egg. With the mixer still running, add the rest of the flour mixture, once combined add the sour cream and mix until you have a light, thick batter. That isn’t very long, btw.

Spoon roughly half the cake batter into the bundt tin, pushing the mixture up the sides and the middle to create a coating of batter on the sides with a trough in the middle, otherwise you will have some filling leakage and that would be awkward.

With that, spoon the gooey filling into the through in the batter. Cover the filling with the remaining batter, smooth the top and place in the oven to bake for 40 minutes, checking with a cake tester after 30 minutes.

Once done aka the cake tester comes out clean where it hits the sponge, let the cake cool on a wire rack for 15 minutes in its tin before trying to turn out. After the waiting time, loosen the edges including the centre part and turn the cake out onto the rack.

When cooled completely, lightly dust with icing sugar and devour. Or just eat when slightly warm and let the still gooey centre fill you with joy.


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