Every second Saturday in January for as long as I can remember, the Lake Hayes Show has been a must-do in the Central Otago summer calendar. From the ripe old age of about six, I was convinced I was a great baker, diligently entering in the Lake Hayes Show baking competition, determined to win a coveted ribbon.

Nowadays, with great sponsors such as F.L Bone, Wild Thyme, Bespoke Kitchen, Raeward Fresh and Cup & Cake, there are far more spectacular prizes. It is well worth the effort in the kitchen to try and secure a prize.

There are numerous categories to enter (baking preserves, kids, vegetables to name a few) . . . including the classic blokes’ section! The recipe below is from show regular Bill Bailey, known throughout the basin for his infamous cakes. So, get into the kitchen, folks, and try for one of these fabulous prizes. Good luck and enjoy!

Editor’s note: Congratulations to freelance snapper Michael Thomas for his victory in the blokes’ only cake competition at this year’s show on Saturday. Feel free to drop some into the office!

PREP TIME: 15 mins

COOK TIME: 80 mins

SERVES: 8 people




3 cups of Oreo cookie crumbs (approx. 600 grams of cookies processed in a food processor)

4 tablespoons of sugar

6 tablespoons melted butter


500 grams Philadelphia Cream Cheese at room temperature

cups sugar

cup smooth peanut butter (do not use natural)

5 eggs room temperature

cup sour cream room temperature

2 teaspoons of lemon juice

1 cup of dark chocolate chips


1 cup sour cream room temperature

cup sugar

cup melted and cooled dark chocolate(Method

1. Pre-heat the oven to 180C.

2. For the crust, mix together ingredients and press firmly on the bottom of a 9-inch (24mm) springform pan. Pop in the fridge to chill.

3. Next do the filling. Beat together the cream cheese, sugar and peanut butter till smooth. Beat in 1 egg at a time.

4. Next blend in the sour cream and lemon juice. Finally, stir through the chocolate chips. Pour the contents on to the pre-prepared crust and bake for 60-70mins, ensuring you do not let the top burn.

5. Remove from the oven and let it cool for about 15 minutes.

6. For the topping, thoroughly mix together the ingredients and spread on top of the baked cheesecake right to the edges.

7. Bake for a further 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool to room temperature. Cover and refrigerate for at least 24 hours (you can freeze the cheesecake at this point if you like and use up to three months later).

8. When ready to serve, remove from the pan and decorate as you choose with whipped cream and chocolate decorations.