A Cornish girl's food adventures

Tag: Christmas

CHOCOLATE ORANGE TRIFLE

CHOCOLATE ORANGE TRIFLE

I think there’s still just about enough time to squeeze in one last moment of indulgence before we all embark on the inevitable dessert-purgatory that is January. Even I might try to exercise some self-control (no promises though, okay…) But until the clock strikes 12 […]

CHRISTMAS STOCKING COCKTAIL

CHRISTMAS STOCKING COCKTAIL

Put the fruit at the bottom of your Christmas stocking to good use this year and make one of these. I love this drink, it looks all sorts of fancy but it’s actually pretty easy to make once you’ve got the syrup. It’s not as […]

CHRISTMAS PANNA COTTA

CHRISTMAS PANNA COTTA

Christmas panna cotta

I don’t really like Christmas pudding. There. I said it. It’s too rich, too heavy and quite sickly, especially to eat on what is, lets face it, the most gluttonous day of the year.

I’m always looking for an alternative that still feels just as festive. At home my mums Christmas pudding ice cream does the job. This year I can’t make it back to the UK to see my friends and family and I fear that my own iced Christmas puds might just leave me homesick and hankering for my mums version.

Christmas panna cotta
I’ve come up with something that’s just different enough to feel like a change. These are indulgent without feeling too rich and heavy. They might just be the perfect end to your festive feast.
These also have the added bonus that, aside from setting time, they’re really quick to make and can be made well ahead of time. Cause lets face it, who has time to spare at Christmas? Make sure that you use a fat-free mincemeat for these (i.e. one made without suet). Oh look, there’s a recipe for that here: https://coriandercooks.com/2013/12/02/fat-free-mincemeat/ what luck!

xmas panna cotta

Ingredients
makes 4 (8-10 dinky ones for parties)

250ml double cream
250ml whole milk
1 tbsp sugar
2 tbsp brandy
1 tsp vanilla
3 leaves of gelatine
2 tbsp mincemeat plus 1 tsp for each glass

Christmas panna cotta

Put the gelatine in a bowl of cold water and set it aside to soak.
Combine everything else except the mincemeat in a medium pan and set it over a low heat. Allow it to become quite hot whilst stirring it but don’t let it boil. Remove the pan from the heat.
Squeeze the excess water from the softened gelatine and add the leaves to the pan. Stir until they have dissolved.
Put a teaspoon of mincemeat in the bottom of each of your serving glasses or moulds. Add two tablespoons of mincemeat to the cream mixture and stir them in. Divide the mixture between the glasses and then pop them in the fridge to set.
Before serving either sprinkle the tops with a tiny bit of cinnamon if you are serving the panna cotta in glasses or tip them out of the moulds and onto dessert plates.

Christmas panna cotta

SPICED APPLE SPARKLER

SPICED APPLE SPARKLER

It might be because I was raised in the West country but I’d take one of these over a bucks fizz on Christmas morning every time. This is made from apple and spice and all things nice. And by ‘all things nice’ I mean rum. […]

Cranberry & Stilton Scones

Cranberry & Stilton Scones

I realise that flicking through the pages of this blog, it might seem that I’m all about the sweet treats. It’s a fair enough assumption, just look at how big the word ‘dessert’ is in that tag cloud on the right. (Mind you, the word […]

Gingerbread Tiramisu

Gingerbread Tiramisu

gingerbread tiramisu

The time has come for Mr Colonial Cravings annual office festive hoopla. I’m not sure they refer to it like this but I think that maybe they should start.
To say thank you for the hours of photographing food that he puts in (my hands are just too shaky to take a decent picture) I’ve made him something extra special.
I’ve combined his favourite Italian treat with something festive from their Austrian neighbours. Gingerbread! And it is so good! If you like gingerbread lattes then you’re going to love this. Seriously, this tastes amazing. Layers of richly spiced sponge soaked in boozy coffee, sandwiched together with thick zabaglione cream. Christmas dessert heaven…

gingerbread tiramisu
You can bake the sponge ahead of time because it keeps really well, and also if it is a tiny bit stale then it tends to soak up the coffee better. Winning all round!
If you don’t have a spring-form cake tin, of just don’t want to serve the tiramisu like this, then you can of course just build up the layers in a serving dish, trifle-style. Either works well for this.

gingerbread tiramisu

Ingredients
serves 10-12

Half the quantity of gingerbread from my gingerbread latte cupcakes, baked in a spring-form pan for about 35 minutes at 180°c.

300ml strong brewed coffee
3 tbsp sugar
50ml brandy/dark rum (feel free to use more if you like it really boozy)
1 tbsp coffee liqueur (optional)
2 egg yolks
1 tsp vanilla paste
225g mascarpone (room temperature)
200ml double cream
dark chocolate to serve

gingerbread tiramisu

Trim away the very top of the cake, to expose the crumb and slice the sponge in half horizontally. Set aside.
Mix one tablespoon of the sugar with the coffee, brandy/rum and coffee liqueur (if using) and let the coffee cool a bit.
Place the remaining sugar in a mixing bowl with the egg yolks and vanilla and place it over a pan of simmering water. Whip the yolks until they are pale and fluffy and have at least doubled in volume. Remove them from the heat and let it cool for a minute or two before beating the mascarpone into it.
Put the cream in another bowl and whip it until it becomes thick and fluffy. Use a large metal spoon to fold the cream into the egg yolk/mascarpone mixture.

gingerbread tiramisu
To assemble the tiramisu place a layer of the sponge back into the springform pan that you baked it in. Brush the surface of it with the coffee mixture. You need it to be saturated but not so soggy that it loses all integrity.
Spread half of the creamy filling mixture evenly over the sponge and then carefully place the second layer on top. Brush this with coffee too, again making sure that it is well moistened but not drenched. Don’t worry, you won’t need all of the coffee mixture. Cover this with the remaining cream mixture and smooth off the surface. Put the tiramisu in the fridge to firm up for a couple of hours.
Dust the top of the tiramisu with some grated dark chocolate (I like to be fairly liberal with it) and run a palate knife around the edge of the tin before releasing the catch and removing the sides of the tin. Carefully transfer the tiramisu to a serving plate. Enjoy!

gingerbread tiramisu

PINK PEPPERCORN PETTICOAT TAILS

PINK PEPPERCORN PETTICOAT TAILS

Try saying that five times fast! Shortbread petticoat tails always make me think of Christmas. Someone always gets one of those tartan boxes filled with them, hopefully the ones coated in dark chocolate. Yum! These have a little spicy twist to them in the form […]

CHRISTMAS BISCOTTI

CHRISTMAS BISCOTTI

I generally find that tackling wrapping a particularly daunting pile of Christmas presents is easier with something close by to keep your energy levels up. Yes, coffee alone could do it but a piece of gingerbread biscotti on the side doesn’t hurt. And your reward […]

APPLE AND MINCEMEAT CRUMBLE

APPLE AND MINCEMEAT CRUMBLE

 

apple & mincemeat crumble

I know that it’s January and we’re all supposed to be at our most health conscious, trying to make amends for our festive indulgences, but it’s still winter out there which, as far as I’m concerned means that it’s totally acceptable to eat comfort foods! Plus I have half a jar of mincemeat in the fridge and I think being less wasteful is as good a resolution as any.

Ingredients
serves 4

2 apples
2 heaped tbsp mincemeat
1 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp allspice
1 tbsp rum/whisky/brandy (optional but why wouldn’t you?)

Topping
150g plain flour
80g sugar
85g butter
2 tbsp oats
1 tbsp flaked almonds

apple & mincemeat crumble

 

Pre-heat your oven to 190°c and peel and core the apples. Roughly chop these up, I like a mix of different sized chunks so that some stay a bit more crisp whilst others cook down nicely. Toss the apple with a teaspoon of sugar, the booze and the allspice and put them in your baking dish. Dollop on the mincemeat and set the dish aside whilst you make the topping.
Mix together the sugar and flour and then lightly and gently rub the butter into it until it looks like fine breadcrumbs. Stir the oats and almonds through this mixture. Use this to cover the apple and mincemeat, pressing it down very lightly at the edges of the dish to minimise any juice bubbling over.
Bake the crumble for around 50 minutes, by which time the topping should be lovely and golden. Serve hot with plenty of cream to cut through the richness of the mincemeat.

apple & mincemeat crumble

 

INDIVIDUAL CHOCOLATE AND GINGER CHEESECAKES

INDIVIDUAL CHOCOLATE AND GINGER CHEESECAKES

  Dark chocolate and crystallised ginger go so well together and the warming spiciness feels very festive. Because these are made in individual portions they take a lot less time to bake and would also make a great dessert option for Christmas parties. You could […]