Lolly Cake



The recipe today is neither sophisticated nor elaborate, but it is easy, tasty and lots of fun!

Lolly Cake is a staple of children’s birthday parties all over New Zealand, and I’ve created this version with ingredients to hand in the UK.

Lolly Cake is a no-bake fridge cake, made with malted milk biscuit crumbs and foam sweeties that makes for a delightfully colourful slice when served. The sweeties (lollies) used in New Zealand are the (recently rebranded from “Eskimo”) “Explorer” sweeties, which come in a range of colours and fruit flavours.  Here in the UK we can’t match that from one packet, but there are options available and you are only limited by the effort you wish to make.

“Explorer” sweeties are a foam-style confectionary and the most easily recognisable UK counterparts are foam shrimps and foam bananas, both of various sizes, available in most supermarkets. As can be seen in the top photo, you may also find some foam mushrooms, although from experience they tend to have a harder texture which doesn’t always soften in a similar way to the shrimp and bananas.

Online you can find a much wider choice, and I made the Lolly Cake above with some jumbo bananas and shrimp, as well as some two-colour cylindrical Rhubarb and Custard sweeties I found online. As well as the bright two-colour effect, the sharpness of the rhubarb flavouring was a nice contrast to the sweet biscuit.

The main body of the cake is made from Malted Milk biscuit crumbs, sweetened condensed milk and butter, and once set, the outside is then coated in dessicated coconut.

Don’t wait until a children’s party, Lolly Cake can be enjoyed by all ages and at any time, and is a bright and colourful change from some of the rich foods at this time of year.

Lolly Cake

2 x 200g packets Malted Milk biscuits
200ml sweetened condensed milk
100g unsalted butter

About 200g of foam sweeties – or to taste

dessicated coconut to coat

  • You can form this into a roll like chocolate salami, if you like, but I’ve found the simplest way is to line a slim rectangular loaf tin with cling film and press the mixture into that. You can also set it as a slab/tray, but the roll/loaf shape gives a nice, broad cross-section when cut which displays the colourful sweeties to best effect. Lay out your clingfilm/foil or line your chosen mould with clingfilm.
  • Blitz the biscuits in the food processor to a fine crumb and tip 300g into a bowl. Reserve the remaining crumbs for use later (maybe).
  • Put the condensed milk and butter into a pan and heat gently until the butter has melted. Alternatively, zap it briefly in the microwave in a suitable container.
  • Pour the melted butter mixture onto the biscuit crumbs and fold together. The mixture should have the texture of wet sand. If the mix is too wet, add some or all of the remaining crumbs.
  • Fold through the foam sweeties. If your shrimp/bananas are large, you might prefer to place them in your chosen mould for ease of distribution. Add more sweeties if you like.
  • Wrap the cling film around/over and press your mixture firmly into shape. If making a roll, wrap the foil around the outside as it will be easier to make it keep its shape. Tighten the ends by twisting to make the roll firm and tight.
  • Chill your Lolly Cake overnight.
  • Next day, remove the wrappings and coat the outside of your Lolly Cake with dessicated coconut. You might need to press the coconut by hand, but as the outside will be rather sticky, it should adhere well.
  • Cut into slices to serve.
  • If there’s any left over, store in an airtight container in the fridge.