BBQ, Salsa and a Victoria Sponge

When invited to a friends Birthday BBQ you think practically, what does one need to bring? Beer? meat? salad? why go conventional when you could wow the socks off everybody and bring some of your own homemade Salsa’s along with Birthday Victoria Sponge cake!

Salsa’s are easy enough to make because the blender does most of the work for you, the hardest part is shopping for all the ingredients! once purchased, all that remains is to follow the instructions provided by a good book, check out Easy Barbecue  cook book by Ryland Peters and Small. Below are the highly recommended party salsa’s to get you in the  BBQ and party mood which  includes the delicious and much raved about Corn Pepper Salsa, Fresh Tomato Salsa, Tomato Sesame and Ginger salsa and traditional Guacomole.  Salsa’s are a great present to bring,  you can make them before hand and bring them in left over  glass jars you’ve  kept for just such an occasion!

Now, Salsa’s aside, no summer BBQ would be complete without a little sweet treat. A traditional Victoria sponge is a light cake to bring to any summer BBQ, and Lorriane Pascal’s Victoria sponge cake recipe really hits the spot!

What Do I need?

Corn Pepper Salsa

  • 2 Large Corn Cobs (I just used a tin of corn)
  • 3 tbsp sunflower oil
  • 4 spring onions, trimmed and thinly sliced
  • freshly squeezed juice of 1 lime
  • 6 pepperdew peppers, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped coriander leaves
  • large pinch of chilli powder
  • salt and pepper

What Do I Do?

  • Heat the corn in a large pan over medium heat and add 2 teaspoons of the oil.
  • Stirfry the corn for 2-3 minutes until it begins to brown.
  • Add the spring onions and fry for another minutes.
  • Transfer to a bowl to cool for 10 minutes.
  • Add the lime juice, peppers, coriander and rest of the oil. Mix well.
  • Add the chilli powder and season with salt and pepper.

What Do I need?

Fresh Tomato Salsa

  • 500g of tomatoes, skinned and diced (I didn’t skin, I just put everything in the blender)
  • Half a red onion, chopped (blender)
  • 1-2 small green chillis, deseeded and chopped (blender)
  • 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
  • pinch of caster sugar
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh coriander
  • sea salt

What Do I Do?

  • Put tomatoes in a large bowl with onion and chillis. Add lime juice and mix well, then add the sugar and season with salt. Add the coriander before serving.

What Do I need?

Tomato, sesame and ginger salsa

  • 2 Ripe tomatoes, peeled, deseeded and diced (again, I just bunged it all in the blender)
  • half a red onion, finely chopped (blender)
  • 5 cm of fresh ginger grated
  • 1 garlic clove, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon chopped coriander
  • 2 tablespoons peanut oil
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon seasame oil

What Do I Do?

  • Put all ingredients into a bowl and set aside to infuse for 30 minutes. Done.

What Do I need?


  • 3 medium avocados, halved, stoned and spooned out.
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1 red onion finely chopped
  • 1-2 green chillis finely chopped
  • 1 tomato finely chopped
  • sea salt

What Do I Do?

  • Either blend or mush the avocado in a bowl to a rough paste. Add onion, chillis and tomato and mix until combined. Season with salt.

What Do I need?

Victoria Sponge Cake

  • 200g butter, softened, plus extra for greasing
  • 200g (7oz) caster sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • Seeds 1⁄2 vanilla pod or 2 drops
  • vanilla extract
  • 200g plain flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1-2 tbsp warm water, if required

For the filling:

  • 5-6 tbsp good strawberry jam
  • 300ml double cream
  • 30g icing sugar, plus extra for sprinkling
  • Seeds 1⁄2 vanilla pod or 2 drops
  • vanilla extract

What Do I Do?

  • Preheat the oven to 180°C. Grease two 20cm loose-bottomed cake tins and line the bases with baking paper.
  • Put the butter and caster sugar in a bowl and beat together well. Add 2 eggs, vanilla and half the flour and beat well. Add the other 2 eggs, the rest of the flour and the baking powder and beat. If the mixture is stiff add warm water.
  • Divide the mixture between the prepared tins and level the tops with the back of a spoon. Bake in the oven for 30 minutes, or until the sides of the sponge have shrunk slightly from the side of the tin, the sponge springs back slightly when pressed and a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean. Leave the sponges to cool in the tin.
  • Once the sponges are completely cool, remove them from the tin and place on a serving dish. Spread one sponge with the jam.
  • Put the cream, icing sugar and vanilla in a large bowl and whip until thick. Dollop the whipped cream mixture on top of the jam, then put the other sponge on top and sprinkle with some icing sugar.

(Photography:  David McClelland)



  1. Felicity says:

    Dee, that just looks delicious!

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