A Lamington is a much-loved Australian cake that is as traditional and popular as the pavlova, the Aussie meat pie, and vegemite. Made with small squares of vanilla sponge coated with chocolate and coconut, Lamingtons are a perfect mid-morning or afternoon snack. Australians love a lamington with a cup of tea and you’ll find them in cake shops, school canteens, and tea rooms around the country.
But the home of the lamington is Brisbane, Australia’s third largest city. These delicious small cakes are named after Lord Lamington, a former Governor of Queensland from 1896 – 1901. The first lamingtons were made when unexpected guests arrived at Government House in Queensland and Lord Lamington’s chef was asked to provide refreshments at short notice.
A French vanilla sponge cake baked the day before was repurposed and cut into squares, dipped in chocolate icing, and rolled in coconut to make the cakes less sticky. The improvised recipe was a huge success.
You’ll sometimes find lamingtons with a layer of cream or strawberry jam between two halves of the sponge cake. Lamingtons are easy and fun to make and delicious to eat.