I’m totally converted to vegan banana bread, I always get better results from it than from my more traditional recipe and I’m really not sure that I can tell the difference as far as the flavour is concerned. That’s especially true of this recipe, which […]
This is such a classic Christmas combination. Tart cranberries and sweet fragrant orange combined with all the luxury and indulgence we deserve at this time of year. Panna cotta is also a fantastic dessert for the festive season, when we’re all so busy and could […]
If anyone can think of a catchier name for this then I would love to hear it. It is a bit of a mouthful, no pun intended.
I’ve met quite a few Americans who find the fact that we Brits often refer to dessert as pudding a little odd. We also refer to things that quite clearly are not pudding as pudding (e.g. Yorkshire pudding, steak & kidney pudding, black pudding) but that’s a whole other post! In America ‘pudding’ is pretty much only used to refer to a thick custardy dessert with the exception of bread and butter pudding, although over there it’s just called bread pudding. They seem to love it though, maybe it works so well because their bread is so sweet.
Anyway, I was thinking of how to make bread and butter pudding into something really special. The answer is obviously to add chocolate and use the richest, fattiest ‘bread’ you can find – cue the croissants!
butter for greasing
6 croissants (ideally a little stale)
125g cherry jam
75g dark chocolate (roughly chopped)
3 tsp brandy (optional but really good!)
1 tsp vanilla extract or paste
Grease a baking dish with butter.
Slice the croissants in half horizontally and spread the cut sides with the jam. Arrange them in the baking dish, scattering the chopped chocolate amongst them.
Whisk together the remaining ingredients in a jug, ensuring that they are really well blended. Pour this custard mixture over the croissants and then set the whole lot to one side for 15 minutes so that the croissants can soak up the custard. Pre-heat your oven to 190°c.
Bake for 35 minutes, until the custard is softly set. Cover the top with some foil if it starts to get too brown. Leave to stand for five minutes before serving.
I’ve made this a few times now and it always gets a really warm welcome at the table. It’s what autumn puddings should be, rich and warming and packed with flavourful spices. The sponge is wonderfully light with a gloriously sticky crust, the pears are […]
When I was little a battle would be waged every summer in our garden between my mum and the resident blackbirds over who was going to get to the blackcurrants first once they reached peak ripeness.
On the occasions when my mum won the war she would turn the sharp little beads of blackness into sticky, purple, blackcurrant jam which usually ended up on my brothers breakfast. Being from Cornwall though, I’m now inclined to think that the jam should have been turned into this!
It’s such a gloriously rich and creamy cheesecake, every bit as luxurious as it sounds. The soft velvety texture of the clotted cream is the perfect partner to the sharp, fruity blackcurrant jam.
200g digestive biscuits
400g cream cheese
125g clotted cream
125g blackcurrant jam
Make the base by crushing up the biscuits and melting the butter. Combine the two to form your base mixture. Press this mixture into the base of a lightly greased spring-form cake tin. Pop it in the fridge to firm up whilst you make the filling. Pre-heat your oven to 160°c.
Beat the cream cheese until it is nice and soft and then mix in the sugar. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating the mixture well after each addition. Briefly beat in the clotted cream, so that it is just blended in. Ripple 75% of the jam through the mixture. Take the chilled base from the fridge and pour the cheesecake mixture onto it. Add the remaining jam in blobs and swirl them in. Finally level off the top by giving the tin a couple of sharp taps on your kitchen counter.
Wrap the base of the tin securely in foil and then place it in a bain-marie. Bake the cheesecake for 40-45 minutes. The middle should still have a bit of wobble to it. Turn off the oven and open the door a little but leave the cheesecake in there to cool to room temperature before putting it in the fridge to chill completely. Once it’s thoroughly chilled remove it from the tin and place it on your serving plate.
Sometimes you just need a slice of rich gooey chocolate cake. A moelleux isn’t some namby-pamby light, fluffy sponge adorned with frosting. It’s a serious chocolate hit. Dense and fudgy and a little bit gooey in the middle, almost to the point of melting. It’s like a very grown-up brownie.
When we went to Paris we had dinner at an amazing restaurant in Montmartre (away from the tourist traps by Sacre Coeur) and I ordered Cafe Gourmand for dessert. I always order it when I see it on the menu – usually through a combination of indecisiveness and greed. I get to try three or four tiny desserts but it totally counts as one!
Anyway, one of our ( I shared with Mr Colonial Cravings because I’m nice like that) mini desserts was a slice of deliciously rich and melting homemade moelleux. It was utterly delicious, a tiny bit warm, served with Chantilly cream. Heaven!
For Mr Colonial Cravings birthday this year I thought that I would try my hand at baking one infused with Earl Grey tea. It’s safe to say that it was a success!
200g dark chocolate
40g plain flour
2 tsp earl grey tea (optional)
icing sugar to decorate
Pre-heat your oven to 190°c and grease a spring-form cake tin. I like to lightly dust my tin with a little flour too, just to be on the safe side.
Melt together the chocolate and butter in a bain-marie and then set it aside to cool a little. Beat together the eggs and the sugar until they are fairly pale and fluffy. Mix the eggs and the chocolate together.
Grind the tea as finely as you can and sift it with the flour. Discard any bits that are too big to go through the sieve. Sieve the flour/tea again into the chocolate and egg mixture and then fold it together. Pour the batter into the prepared tin and bake the cake for about 35 minutes. It should still be a little soft in the middle when it’s done. Leave the cake to cool in the tin before serving with a dollop of cream.