FRIDAY FEAST with Heather Garside

I know I’ve said it before, but I really am amazed by the wonderful writing talent we have in Australia, in particular in the romance genre. It’s great to walk into my local bookseller or browse my favourite online vendor and see rows orHeather Garside author photo lists of home-grown stories, and it’s a delight to be able to showcase many of these authors on Friday Feast.

My guest this week is Heather Garside. Heather’s country to her bootstraps, growing up on a cattle property in central Queensland, and now living with her husband and son on a beef and grain farm in the same area. So it’s little wonder she’s chosen to write about love and the land.

Her latest release is Breakaway Creek. Check it out.




Breakaway Creek by Heather GarsideTwo city women, a century apart, find love and adventure in the Queensland outback.

Betrayed by her boyfriend, Shelley Blake escapes the city on a quest to unravel a century-old family mystery.  Her search takes her to a remote cattle station run by Luke Sherman.

Shelley and Luke try to resist their mutual attraction as he fights to reclaim his children from a broken marriage, and Shelley uncovers the truth about her ancestors, Alex and Emma.

Emma’s story of racial bigotry and a love that transcends all obstacles unfolds in the pioneering days of the 1890s.

Set in the 19th and 21st centuries, Breakaway Creek is a passionate rural romance of love and its consequences.

Shelley and Emma are separated by time but they’re bound by a dark secret to a place called Breakaway Creek.


Breakaway Creek can be yours with just a few clickety-clicks! Purchase the ebook direct from publisher Clan Destine Press or from Amazon, Kobo, Lulu and Nook. Or visit Clan Destine Press for the paperback, coming this week!

Now please welcome Heather.


Kidding myself it’s Sugar-Free!


This is based on a recipe from but I have varied it slightly.

The use of honey instead of sugar attracted me to this recipe as I have to avoid sugar. (Probably shouldn’t have honey, either, but I seem to get away with it better!) For wholemeal flour, I use spelt flour which seems to be ‘true’ wholemeal, as opposed to the normal wholemeal which is supposedly white flour with the husks re-added.  As I have been trying to avoid wheat flour, I often grind raw buckwheat in the blender and substitute for wheat flour. However I was in a hurry this morning so used mostly standard flour. It does taste better but unfortunately white flour turns to sugar as it’s digested, so in fact if I eat I’ll probably suffer for it! Sometimes it’s worth it, though. 🙂

Pistachio Orange Cake

Orange Pistachio cake

125 g butter, melted

1/2   cup honey

1 ½ cups SR flour

½ cup wholemeal plain flour

¾ cup almond meal

1 tablspn grated orange rind

½ cup orange juice

1 cup milk

3 beaten eggs

¼ cup chopped pistachio kernels

Combine butter and honey, sift flours into a large bowl and add almond meal. Make a well in centre4 and add the remaining ingredients, combine well. Pour mixture into a greased and lined 22 cm round cake pan, sprinkle top with pistachios.

Bake for 1 hour to 1 1/2 hours at 160° fan-forced or 180° normal oven. If it starts to brown too much, cover loosely with foil. Test with skewer, stand in pan for 10 minutes. Cool on wire rack.

May be drizzled with extra honey but I’ve skipped this bit!


Healthy cake! Everyone will want a slice of this. Thanks Heather.

So, Feasters, do you have any tips to cut sugar from your cooking? What about other ways to keep sweets healthy?  I like to whizz up rolled oats and add them to muffins for extra fibre, but I’m a bit hopeless at cutting out sugar. Maybe you’re the same and like your sweets indulgent too?

If you’d like to learn more about Heather and her books, please visit her website. You can also connect via Facebook.


0 thoughts on “FRIDAY FEAST with Heather Garside

  1. AvatarAlissa Callen

    Have trees full of oranges so guess what I’ll be making this weekend:) Thanks Heather and Cathryn! As for sugar usually halve the amount a recipe specifies but then kids double the amount of chocolate!

  2. Avatarheathergarside

    The first time I made it, the cake was lovely and light, but this time it was quite stodgy. Not sure if I measured something incorrectly – but I used all plain flour and must have needed more baking powder than I used. So hope it turns out well for you, Alissa.
    Thanks for commenting!

  3. AvatarPaula Beavan

    I love Friday Feasts. I am sugar and gluten free, so it ticks the boxes for me 🙂 I am going to walk the dogs then make this cake. I am having my own personal writing retreat weekend (at home) so I think I deserve this cake! Thanks for another Friday Feast winner and another book to add to my TBR pile! 🙂

      1. AvatarCathryn Hein

        Oh, how interesting, Paula. Not something I’ve ever thought but a good idea.

        Hope that cake tasted good. Certainly looks like it’d be pretty yum.

  4. AvatarJoan Kilby

    Heather, I love the combination of oranges and pistachios. I do try to limit how much sugar is in my overall diet and don’t bake sweets nearly as much as I used to. But if I’m going to eat cake, then I’ll eat cake, to hell with whether it’s healthy or not. I would make this recipe simply because it looks delicious. Your book looks fab, too! 🙂

    Cathryn, thanks for another great FF.

    1. AvatarCathryn Hein

      Ha ha! I’m so on your side with that, Joan. It’s like chocolate. If i’m going to have it, then it’s going to be the good stuff. Life’s too short!

  5. AvatarSandy Curtis

    Heather, that looks like a great recipe. I’m gluten free, but the gf flours today are so good substituting them for ‘normal’ flour seems to work quite well. I always reduce the sugar in all recipes as I don’t have a sweet tooth, and after watching Catalyst last night (ABC) I’m glad I do.
    Congratulations on the release of Breakaway Creek. It’s a great read and I know you’ll have people clamouring for more.

    1. AvatarCathryn Hein

      Eek, Sandy. I want to look up Catalyst and see what it was about now but it’ll probably put me off the home made icecream I made and we can’t have that!

      1. AvatarSandy Curtis

        It’s like a lot of things in life, it’s a matter of balance. And probably recognising what’s good for you and what’s not. Sounds a bit like everyone’s love life LOL. I’m still going to make that cake, but will freeze some pieces to whip out when I need a treat. I’ll call it my Breakaway Creek treat 🙂

  6. Avatarheathergarside

    Thanks for your lovely comments, Paula, Joan, Sandy and Suzi.
    Paula, thanks for your suggestion about Dextrose. I’ll have to read about it and see if that might suit me, too.
    And Joan, I also believe in letting my hair down occasionally, even knowing I’ll pay for it later. 🙂
    Sandy, I also saw Catalyst the other night and was pleased to see the evils of sugar being exposed. 🙂 Thank you for your congratulations.
    Suzi, I hope you’re now on the mend. Thanks for taking the time to comment.

  7. AvatarJuanita Kees

    I’ll bring the honey if you’ll bake the cake! My fire alarm tends to go off a lot when I’m in the kitchen 🙂
    Apparently Jarrah honey has the lowest sugar levels, or so I’m told by the label! This looks like a great cake, Heather – almost as good as Breakaway Creek. Great cover too!

  8. AvatarS E Gilchrist (@SEGilchrist1)

    What a wonderful looking & sounding cake. I’ll definitely be trying this one out. I admit if the recipe calls for sugar, I always leave it it – otherwise my cooking tastes like a century old leather boot. Congratulations Heather on your new release. The blurb sounds wonderful and I love the cover. Will also be checking out your book.

  9. AvatarLouise Reynolds

    This cake looks so yummy. I love anything with pistachios, honey and orange. It sounds vaguely middle eastern so I’m imagining throwing a few extra spices in. Maybe cardamom? Anyhoo. I just use sugar if the recipe asks for sugar and just cut down on my portion size. Congratulations on Breakaway Creek, Heather. It looks like a great read.

  10. AvatarPaula Beavan

    Hello again, just thought I’d let you know that I made this recipe this morning with a few variations. I used Rice Malt Syrup as a fructose replacement for the honey. As I had no oranges, I used soda water and added dried cranberries into the mixture and mixed the pistachios in too. LOL so it’s kind of changed it a bit.Ok a lot, but it’s a good base for the GF that I require. Oh and I made muffins instead of a cake. Portion control and all that 🙂 I hope they taste good. I’ll let you know, but they sure look fab 🙂 I’ll post a pic on my facebook authors page 🙂

    1. AvatarHeather Garside

      That’s what cooking is all about, isn’t it, Paula? Using our inititive to work with the ingredients we have and our own dietary requirements. The other day I ground some of our home-grown sorghum and made a date loaf with it. It’s okay but very filling!

      1. AvatarCathryn Hein

        Paula, thanks so much for that update. How fascinating with your substitutes! But what fun too. As Heather said, that’s what’s cooking is all about.

        I hope they tasted delish!