Real World Gardener Spice It Up with Caraway

May 17th, 2015

REAL WORLD GARDENER Wed. 5pm 2RRR 88.5fm Sydney, streaming live at and Across Australia on the Community Radio Network.<?xml:namespace prefix = "o" />


Real World Gardener is funded by the Community Broadcasting Foundation (CBF).

The complete CRN edition of RWG is available on , just click on 2RRR to find this week’s edition. The new theme is sung by Harry Hughes from his album Songs of the Garden. You can hear samples of the album from the website

Caraway Seed Cake


with Ian Hemphill from

This next spice is used to flavour a whole lot of food that we eat.

Think Havarti cheese, rye bread, sauerkraut and caraway seed cake in Britain.

What may surprise you is that the roots can be cooked as a vegetable like parsnips or carrots, and, the leaves are sometimes eaten as herbs, either raw, dried, or cooked, just like you would with parsley.

Caraway plant

Caraway (Carum carvi), is also known as meridian fennel or Persian cumin, and is a biennial plant in the carrot or Apiaceae family.

It’s native to western Asia, Europe and Northern Africa.

Caraway is a spice that we should all be growing along with our parsley and chervil because it’s so versatile.

The plant looks like others in the carrot family, which includes parsley.

Caraway has those finely divided, feathery leaves with thread-like divisions, growing on 20–30 cm stems.

The main flower stem is 40–60 cm tall, with small white or pink flowers in umbels.

Did you know that Caraway seeds are actually meant to be called fruits? In fact they’re crescent-shaped achenes, around 2 mm long, with five pale ridges.

If you have any questions about growing caraway, or have some growing in your garden, send in a photo  or write in to or write in to 2RRR P.O. Box 644 Gladesville NSW 1675.

Caraway Seed Cake Recipe


  • 175g (6oz) butter, softened
  • 175g (6oz) caster sugar
  • 3 medium eggs
  • 250g (8oz) self-raising flour
  • 38g jar caraway seeds
  • 2tbsp milk
  • 1kg (2lb) loaf tin, buttered and lined with a strip of baking parchment

How To Bake

Tip all the ingredients into a bowl and beat until smooth. Spoon mixture into the loaf tin and level the surface.

Bake the cake in the centre of the oven 160°C (320°F, gas mark 3) for 45 mins-1 hr, or until the cake feels just firm to the touch in the centre, and a skewer comes out clean when inserted into cake.Remove the cake from the oven and leave to cool in the tin for 10-15 mins.Transfer it to a wire rack to cool completely.

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