Lost and Found Dad’s Sinner and Saint Birthday Cake


July 14, 2013 by Joanne T Ferguson

IMG_3840 Today is Dad’s birthday! Happy Birthday Dad!

He would have been 87!

My dad meant (and STILL means) THE WORLD (and then some!) to me!

I can always STILL hear his voice and he makes his presence known in various ways ALL the time!

Dad’s humor “constantly” comes out through me!

I can FEEL him smiling down from the heavens, ESPECIALLY today at Chef Georgio aka hubby (Make No Bones About It fame) and me!

My name is Joanne aka mickeydownunder aka Joanna aka FANG and I have a confession, true!

I have been a “tad” more forgetful of late, but “sense” I am not the only one too!

I came across Fanouropita Cake (also spelled Phanouropita) the other day and immediately put it “on my list” to do.

It was only when I went looking for it, I could not find it!

Isn’t that always the way too?

While I am not a religious person, I do believe in traditions and what caught my eye (other than the lovely photos and ingredients), was the story behind the cake too!

The cake is “traditionally” made on the eve of Saint Fanourios’ Name Day on August 22nd; interestingly, our anniversary too!

The cake is brought to the church of Saint Fanourios for the priest to bless it during a special ceremony and afterwards, everyone gets a share, but not before asking “for the Saint’s mother’s sins to be forgiven.*”

So, let’s recap…

I have LOST my dad, but FOUND I am the person he (and I) am SO proud of who I have developed into, true!

Should I keep you in suspense, WHO is the sinner and WHO is the saint too? lol

My understanding is this cake can be made anytime of the year; lucky for me!

If someone has lost something or someone, Saint Fanourios can help me or thee!

Interestingly, when I opened my What’s On The List folder, I had previously saved Fanouropita (Cake For Lost Things) from Serious Eats.

Ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhh noooooooooooooo, ran out of enough self-raising flour, so used all-purpose flour and adapted my initial recipe. Because I wanted to make this cake sugarless using Xylitol, I find the ingredients work much better with self-rising flour.

If using only all-purpose flour, ONLY add 1 tablespoon baking powder.

Ingredients for Lost and Found Dad’s Sinner and Saint Birthday Cake

3 3/4 cups (use cups, not ounces please) all-purpose flour, sifted
1 3/4 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon Himalayan fine ground pink salt
1 cup Naturally Sweet Xylitol (original recipe uses sugar)
2 teaspoons mixed allspice
3/4 cup macadamia oil
1 1/4 cup orange juice, no preservatives, no added sugar
1/8 teaspoon vanilla powder (original recipe calls for 1 teaspoon vanilla extract)
Naturally Sweet Xyltiol Icing Sugar (sugarless)
butter and flour for coating pan

In a large bowl, whisk together sifted flour, mixed spice and xylitol.

Add orange juice, oil and vanilla; stir to combine.

Batter will be very thick, but would suggest you taste and if you think the batter is “way” too thick, than add a little bit more orange juice.

Pre-heat oven to 180C. (350F)

In a spring form pan, butter and flour (like Grandma used to do lol); shaking excess flour from the pan too!

Add batter to spring form pan.

Bake until golden brown and skewer comes out clean.


Original recipe called for 45 minutes; mine was done and lovely golden brown in 30 minutes.

Remove from oven; let cool in pan for 10 minutes; remove spring form and continue to fully cool on a wire rack.

Dust with icing sugar and ENJOY!

My name is Joanne and I have another confession too!

I have never used a stencil to put icing sugar on and even thought the cake “slightly” cracked on top, the taste (per Chef Georgio) was “spot on.” (Australian lingo for “PERFECT!”)

Thank you Chef Georgio for assisting me with the stencil; as I always like to give a compliment and acknowledge what for me people do!

IMG_3853Thank you for allowing me to share Dad today, true!

Like in life, he was (and is STILL) always SO special too!

When I did Julie Goodwin’s GATHER Cookbook Review, it made me feel special sharing mum with you too!

I hope you can FEEL the love that I have for my dad today on his birthday!

Reading your comments would really MAKE MY (and his) DAY!


This cake is so versatile too! Perhaps next time, will add lemon or orange zest and some macadamias (Dad’s favourites) or some pistachios. (mine too!)

Lost Something?  Make a Fanouropita Cake!

The word has truly got out that I love being invited to fun-filled food parties.

Thanks to From Calculus to Cupcakes this week, I was “once again” invited to the Foodies Friends Friday Linky Party and thought I would be slightly naughty by bringing this sugarless cake!

24 thoughts on “Lost and Found Dad’s Sinner and Saint Birthday Cake

  1. holly says:

    Thank you for spreading JOY and sharing at the Oh What a HAPPY Day party.

    Holly at Not Done Growing

  2. I miss my father too and he would have been 83 this coming August. How I wish I could have him here to bake him this adorable cake.

  3. Peggy says:

    What a beautiful sentiment. The cake looks lovely.

  4. Rosa Mayland says:

    A beautiful tribute to your late father and a wonderful cake! Happy Birthday to your dad.



  5. Elizabeth says:

    Well done Joanne and to Chef Georgio for helping do the stencil. the Cake looks lovely and one day I may even try it. Nice sentiments re your Dad, we all think nice thoughts and have good memories about our parents once they depart and as you go through life you look forward to the day you may be reunited.

  6. chocolatepeanutbutterohmy says:

    Thats really lovely Joanne, It looks beautiful too

  7. danapny says:

    Absolutely touching story and gorgeous cake Joanne. 🙂

  8. babso2you says:

    Lovely cake, and happy birthday to your Dad! I can see him smiling down on you!

  9. This looks a beautiful cake, such a nice tribute to your dad. I lost my dad just a little over 5 years ago. I still miss him even after all these years.

  10. june sharplin says:

    Joanne, you really are a credit to your parents, and your comments made me stop and smell the roses so to speak, I lost my father when I was 38, (I will be 67 next week), and like you I am aware of him in so many little ways, but life gets busy and we push things to the back. every now and then we need a reality check and this was it for me , Kudos to you AND YOUR DAD. X

  11. What a beautiful cake and a tribute to your father! And that stencil is absolutely beautiful on top! 😀

  12. Kylie says:

    I know exactly how you feel about your Dad Joanna. My lovely, lovely, LOVELY(!) Dad died when he was only 46 (just a bit younger than I am now) I still miss him – he meant/means the world to me just as your dad did/does to you.

    I am always losing things (keys!) maybe the Fanouroptia Cake can help me out next time…

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About me

Joanne T. Ferguson

Passionate Home Cook who tries to inspire one recipe and one event at time!


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