YoYos by Anna Polyviou

This recipe is by punk princess Anna Polyviou who will be at this year’s Cake Bake & Sweets Show.

As a child I would buy yoyos from a pastry shop and sit and eat them with my godmother Angela, my second mum.

MAKES 25–30


6 eggs, separated
140 g (5 oz) caster (superfine) sugar
125 g (4½ oz) plain (all-purpose) flour, sifted
50 g (1¾ oz) cornflour (cornstarch), sifted
300 g (10½ oz) dark chocolate (53%), chopped or buttons

200 g (7 oz) caster (superfine) sugar
1 vanilla bean, split and seeds scraped
1 tablespoon lemon juice

1 litre (35 fl oz/4 cups) milk
100 g (31/2 oz) unsalted butter
1 vanilla bean, split and seeds scraped
12 egg yolks
200 g (7 oz) caster (superfine) sugar
100 g (31/2 oz) custard powder


1. To make the syrup, combine all of the ingredients with 200 ml (7 fl oz) of water in a small saucepan and stir. Bring to the boil over medium heat. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool completely before using.
2. To make the custard filling, combine the milk, butter and the vanilla bean and seeds in a small saucepan over medium heat and bring the mixture to the boil. Meanwhile, whisk together the egg yolks, sugar and custard powder. Pour half the boiling milk mixture into the egg mixture and stir well. Return the mixture to the pan with the remaining milk mixture.
3. Return to medium heat, whisking until the custard becomes quite thick. Make sure it does not catch on the bottom of the saucepan.
4. Pour the custard into a heatproof bowl and discard the vanilla bean. Cover the surface with plastic wrap and transfer to the refrigerator to cool completely before using.
5. Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F). Line one large or two small baking trays with baking paper.
6. In an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whisk the egg yolks with 90 g (3¼ oz) of the caster sugar on high speed until pale and thick. Transfer to a bowl.
7. Using a clean dry bowl and whisk attachment, whisk the egg whites starting on low speed and gradually increasing to high speed, to soft peaks.
8. Reduce the speed to low and slowly add the remaining sugar, then increase the speed to high and whisk to firm peaks.
9. Fold half of the egg white mixture into the yolk mixture. The fold through the flour and cornflour. Fold in the remaining egg white mixture; make sure not to over mix the sponge.
10. Put the mixture into a piping (icing) bag fitted with a plain size 13 nozzle. Pipe 5 cm (2 inch) discs onto the prepared trays, making sure there is plenty of space between each one. Bake in the oven for 10–12 minutes until golden. Allow to cool on the tray. The mixture should make 50–60 sponge discs.
11. To assemble, match the sponge cookies up into pairs. Turn one of each pair over so that the flat side faces up. Brush the flat side with the sugar syrup.
12. Take the custard filling out of the refrigerator and beat with a spatula until smooth. Fill a piping (icing) bag fitted with a plain size 15 nozzle with the custard filling and pipe it on to the cookie just inside the edge.
13. Turn the other discs over and brush the flat side with the sugar syrup. Place the matching cookie on top of the custard so that the flat side coated with sugar syrup is touching the custard. Gently squeeze together, so that the custard cream reaches the edge of the cookie.
14. Put the chocolate into a microwave-proof bowl and melt in 40-second bursts, stirring between each burst, until two-thirds of the chocolate is melted. Stir the chocolate until it’s completely melted and then temper down to 30°C (86°F).
15. Dip the top of a Kok into the chocolate and allow the excess chocolate to run off. Place the Kok back onto the tray with the chocolate side up and allow to set completely.
16. Repeat for the remaining Kok. Fill a paper piping (icing) bag with the remaining chocolate and pipe a spiral on top of each Kok.

Images and recipes from Sweet Street by Anna Polyviou, Murdoch Books, RRP $39.99
Photography by Nikki To, styling by Rhianne Contreras.