Tom's birthday and a zucchini and pistachio cake


Our Tom turned four on Sunday. So we celebrated with all his grandparents, one of his godparents (the others live in Sydney), and a couple of his little friends with parents in tow.

Having been treated to a new slew of slew of John Deere toy tractors and earth moving thingos (lucky duck that he is), the guest of honour was a bit busy darting from one new thing to another so it was hard to catch him for a photo, but we did manage to hold him still long enough to blow out four candles and be serenaded in front of the amazing cake my friend Kathy made (see below). Cake decorating isn't one of my strengths, but it is definitely one of Kathy's so when I was having an anxiety attack about how to create the tractor cake Tommy was set on for Sunday she stepped in and saved the day - thank you Kathy I am ever grateful!

I made a zucchini and pistachio cake, the kids drank Milla Cordial and the adults partook of my new favourite tipple; Small Acres Cyder's Poire (sparkling pear cider). It was so great to have a Sunday at home with nothing to do but play and catch up with friends and I am pretty sure Tommy had a great day too.

Zucchini and pistachio cake

This recipe is adapted from one given in the Autumn issue of Fete Magazine. It  makes a delicious, not too sweet cake that lasts well (un-iced).

2 cups grated zucchini
1/2 cup caster sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 cup olive oil
4 eggs
1 tbsp vanilla extract
3 cups plain flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp bicarbonate soda
1 tbsp cinnamon
1 cup pistachios, shelled

250g cream cheese, at room temperature
1/2 cup caster sugar
Zest and juice of one lemon

Preheat the oven to 180C and grease and line a loaf tin. Mix together the zucchini, sugars, olive oil, eggs and vanilla. In a separate bowl, combine the dry ingredients. Fold the two together then fold through the pistachios and spoon into prepared loaf tin. Bake for 45 minutes or until form to the touch. Let cool on a wire rack.

For the icing; place all ingredients in the bowl of an electric mixer and whisk until smooth. Once the cake is completely cool, spread icing generously across the top and serve.


  1. Happy birthday Tom! Our little man George is just a few months older, as farm boys I am sure they would be mates! It looks and sounds like a beautiful party. I remember that cake recipe from Fete and I thought then how delicious it sounded. Thanks for the reminder! Your garden looks gorgeous too! I am tempted to try and buy some of that sounds very good, might be a nice Christmas beverage. Love your work as always Sophie x

  2. The cake is DIVINE!!! Your friend is a saint.

  3. Happy birthday, Tom. Such a sweet do. x

  4. The party looks just perfect Sophie! I did try the zucchini & pistachio bread recipe from the Fete magazine and while it was nice, I did feel it needed a little tweaking but wasn't sure where to begin. This adapted recipe looks great & I'm sure my husband will be pleased with the added extra - the cream cheese icing! Thanks, Liesl x

  5. Happy Birthday little man what an amazing cake and a beautiful day relaxing with family and friends for Mummy and Dady. Regards Kathy A, Brisbane, Australia

  6. Awesome tractor cake Sophie - I love the sheep and deer. Can imagine Tom would have been so excited. Adela

  7. The zucchini cake looks delicious - I have a glut of zucchini at the moment and am looking for ways to use them up. And isn't the Milla cordial delicious? I bought a bottle for my daughter Milla's 3rd birthday a few weeks ago, she was very pleased to have a personalised drink :)


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