Cake & Bake by the house of Hancock

It's that moment when you walk through the door, and the aroma of freshly baked cakes drifts seductively past your nose. That's when you should abandon all hope of leaving without some goodies tucked into a brown paper bag under your arm.

Jocelyn Hancock, who recently opened Cake & Bake at West End, is one of Brisbane's baking icons. She's a woman with strong country roots who knows good produce when she sees it and prefers to cook with it.

Cake & Bake is the sort of place where I head to with the thought of buying one thing and leave with my arms full of products I just can not resist.

Pop in for lunch and you can have your choice from a cabinet filled with flaky base quiches, fritters, pies and salads made from fresh local ingredients.  There are two tables with stools if you want to eat in house and food can be purchased on paper trays with plastic utensils, so it's like eating at a market only much more comfortable.The coffee is a full flavoured blend.

Jocelyn is known for her sweet treats, and this cabinet does not disappoint with plenty of choice between small and large cakes, slices and cupcakes.

The shelves lining the walls hold strong evidence of Jocelyn's deep connection to the Southern Darling Downs and her family's farm at Killarney. Here she has rows of fruit trees producing stone fruit and citrus and also her own bee hives.

Having made Jocelyn's recipe for Lemon Meringue pie, I can guarantee this is a labour of love.  I'm happy to let Jocelyn do the work next time, and I'll be heading here to pick up one of her artfully designed tarts.

Lemon meringue pie

Plum and pear tart - perfect with a big dollop of whipped cream.
The other great thing about Cake & Bake is that with a little imagination you can incorporate delicious flavours into your meals at home and earn yourself a reputation as a star cook. A few spoonfuls of chutney in your hamburger mix, compote to go with your cake or even biscuits that look home made will all add to your cooking cred if you just keep quiet.

Ed+bK rating: 4.5 / 5 stars
Best tip: There's parking right at the front so slow down as you approach and just slip on in. It's open until 2 pm on Saturday and closed Sunday.
Bottom line:  Expect to pay $12 for a small salad, $7.50 for a mini quiche, and $55 for a large 23cm cake.
Cake & Bake 

Disclaimer: Ed+bK paid for her pies.

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