Lately the weather has not been kind, certainly not what you hope August days to be. This has left me craving something comforting rather than the usual refreshing summer desserts. That said though, I still like to make use of what’s seasonal and I still […]
Aquafaba (chickpea water) is magic stuff. It means that you can make rich, velvety chocolate mousse from the stuff you’d normally chuck away when you’re making a batch of hummus or some falafel. It also means that you don’t have to mess around with raw […]
Is there a better summer dessert than a pavlova? Crisp and chewy meringue topped with cool whipped cream and perfectly ripe, sweet berries – this one has the added richness of cocoa and a luxurious drizzle of chocolate.
I love my meringue to be light and crisp on the outside but nice and chewy in the middle so I always add a little cornflour and a drop of vinegar to help achieve this.
3 egg whites
1 tbsp cocoa powder
1 1/2 tsp cornflour
3/4 tsp balsamic vinegar
300ml double cream
250g fresh raspberries
25g chocolate (whatever you like – I prefer dark)
Preheat your oven to 130°c and line a large baking sheet with a silicone mat or some baking parchment. Place the egg whites in a spotlessly clean bowl and whisk until they hold a stiff peak. Add the sugar, a few tablespoons at a time and whisk again until the meringue is smooth and glossy. Sift over the cocoa powder and cornflour and add the vinegar. Whisk until it holds a stiff peak again. Dollop (or pipe if you’re feeling fancy) the meringue in a circle onto the prepared baking sheet, creating some nice spiky bits, and bake for 2 hours. Once baked turn off the oven and open the door a little but leave the meringue in there to cool and dry out for several more hours if possible.
Whip the cream and spread this over the centre of the cooled pavlova base. Arrange the raspberries on top. Melt the chocolate and then finish the pavlova by drizzling this all over it. Chill before serving.
To give you some idea of just how ridiculously easy it is to make this lovely summer tart, I prepared it with a two month old baby strapped to my chest! This is the kind of recipe that you can just sling together within a few minutes and it looks like you’ve been slaving away in the kitchen for hours to produce a decadent dessert. What could be better? This tart has a rich, flaky crust topped with a creamy cheesecake filling, sweet fresh strawberries and fragrant basil.
1 sheet of ready rolled puff pastry
2 tbsp sugar
few basil leaves
Preheat your oven to 220°c and grease or line a large baking sheet.
Unroll the pastry onto the baking sheet and use a sharp knife to score about one centimetre in from the edge all the way around.
Beat together the mascarpone and the sugar until nice and smooth. Lightly beat the egg and add most of this to the cheese mixture, keep bake just enough to brush around the edges of the tart. Beat the egg into the cheese mixture, ensure it is well combined. Spread this over the tart base, keeping within the scored lines. Slice the strawberries and spread these over the cheesecake topping. Brush the edges of the tart with the reserved beaten egg and sprinkle with a little sugar to give the crust a nice glaze and crunch.
Bake the tart for 20 minutes, until the topping has set and the pastry is golden-brown. Leave to cool before dusting with icing sugar and scattering on a little shredded basil and serving.
I’m quickly learning that it’s entirely possible to make delicious cakes without having to use eggs or any dairy products. This flavourful cake is light and fluffy with a lovely soft texture, like a traditional ginger cake but it’s completely vegan, using dates and vegetable […]
This is quite an unusual dessert, but very tasty. The base is fudgy and chewy and the topping is rich and meltingly creamy. It tastes far more indulgent than the ingredient list might suggest. Whilst I’m not actually vegan I’ve been getting really into exploring […]
This is a really delicious dessert. Like a combination of rhubarb and custard and bread pudding. I actually think it’s much nicer than the traditional version made with dried fruit, it’s not quite as sweet. The rhubarb gives it a nice tang whilst the strawberries prevent it from becoming too tart. The pudding has a deliciously crunchy golden crust on top of a lovely soft, creamy interior – perfect with a dollop of clotted cream.
serves 4 (generously)
200ml single cream
1 tsp vanilla paste
1 tbsp demerara sugar
Pre-heat your oven to 190°c and grease a baking dish with a little butter.
Slice the strawberries and chop the rhubarb into 1cm pieces. Toss the fruit in 1 tablespoon of the sugar and place it in another baking dish or a small roasting tin. Roast the fruit for 15-20 minutes, until the rhubarb is tender.
Meanwhile, thickly slice the brioche and spread each slice with a little butter. Whisk together the eggs, cream, sugar and vanilla until smooth. Arrange a layer of brioche in the greased baking tin, butter side up and top with some of the roasted fruit (keep any juices from cooking it – they’re great added to soda water or a G&T!) Repeat the layers of brioche and fruit until you have used it all and then carefully pour over the egg mixture. Leave the whole thing to soak and absorb some of the custard mixture for 30 minutes.
Sprinkle the demerara sugar over the top to give the pudding a nice crunchy crust and bake it for 30-35 minutes. If the top gets too brown just cover it with a piece of foil. Leave to cool for five minutes before serving.
Sometimes your day needs a little pick-me-up but you don’t always want to rely on sugary snacks and chocolate bars (even if they are delicious). These are a really good alternative, quick and easy to make, full of fibre and pretty tasty to boot. I’m […]