Judy Garland’s Bruised Fruit Cake

Create something delicious out of your diva moments

A proper diva: Helen Dallimore and Nic English in End of the Rainbow

There is a scene in End of the Rainbow where Judy (aka Helen Dallimore) hurls a fruit bowl at Mickey Deans (played by Nic English). We use real fruit in the production and whenever it gets too bruised, director Elena Carapetis takes it home and bakes a cake for everyone in the company to enjoy.

Here’s a sneak peek of the scene from the first week of rehearsals:

Step 1: Throw fruit

It feels like a beautiful metaphor for creating something beautiful out of something ugly… but more importantly, it feels like delicious cake.

Next time you have a diva moment and pelt a banana across a room, don’t throw it away or mourn the waste. Make Elena’s delicious cake and, perhaps, think of the divas that have come before you.


Note: the fruit used in this recipe was foraged from a local rehearsal room. Cut off any seriously bruised bits that have changed colour but softened bits are ok.

• 1/4 cup butter

• 1/3 cup brown sugar

• 1 pear, peeled, cored, divided (1/2 sliced, 1/2 finely diced)

• 2 apples, peeled, cored, divided (1/2 sliced, 1/2 finely diced)

• 2 cups plain flour

• 1 teaspoon cinnamon

• 1 teaspoon baking soda

• 1 teaspoon baking power

• 1/2 cup brown sugar

• 1/2 cup granulated sugar

• 3 eggs

• 2/3 cup vegetable oil

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 3tbs milk
From diva to delicious: a cake in three stages


• Preheat oven to 175C

• Spray a nonstick loaf pan (9.25 x 5.25) with cooking spray and set aside.

• In a small saucepan melt butter and brown sugar over medium-high heat, stirring constantly until the mixture is combined and resembles a caramel sauce and the edges start to bubble. Remove from heat.

• Pour 1/2 of the sauce from the pot into the bottom of the prepared loaf pan. Lay slices of apples along the bottom of the loaf pan, on top of the sauce.

• Then pour remaining 1/2 sauce on top of the apple slices.

• In a large bowl combine flour, cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder, brown sugar and granulated sugar. Stir a few times to combine all the dry ingredients.

• In a separate bowl, add eggs, vegetable oil, milk and vanilla and stir until the eggs are combined with the oil, then pour into the dry mixture and combine. Lastly, add the small apple and pear pieces to the batter and stir.

• Pour batter into the loaf pan and bake for 45 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out of the centre mostly clean.

  • Remove from oven, and allow the loaf to cool (about 2 hours) before turning it onto a board or serving plate and then gently wiggling the loaf pan off (you may need to run a knife gently around the edges.) Slice and enjoy with a cup of tea while watching Judy’s version of A Star is Born.

End of the Rainbow plays in the Royalty Theatre from 31 May — June 22 as part of Adelaide Cabaret Festival. Tickets are available here.

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