Toowoomba is said to be home to the humble Australian cake, the Lamington. Although this seems to be a disputed fact amongst other Australian and overseas places who also lay claim to being the originator of the Lamington, the proof seems to weigh more towards Toowoomba than any other place.
Lamingtons are so named after Charles Cochrane-Baillie (2nd Baron Lamington) who was governor of Queensland from 1896-1901.
The story goes something like this:
During the Summer months, the Governor would escape the higher temperatures of Brisbane and retreat to Harlaxton House in Toowoomba where the climate was much more comfortable and relaxing.
While there one day, the Governors chef, Armand Gallad was requested to serve desert at a moments notice for unscheduled guests.
With what limited ingredients the chef was able to find in the kitchen and a bit of imagination the Lamington was born. The chef was able to cut up some left over sponge cake into cubes, dip them into melted chocolate, and whether by accident or intention drop the chocolate dipped cake into a bowl of desiccated coconut.
Furthermore the guests were so impressed, they requested the receipt which spread to become a popular Australian icon as it is today.
There are other variations to this story, and some totally different theories as well as to where and how the lamington was made.