Fresh Berry Tarts

Summer is here and I finally got around to typing one of the most simplest recipes up. Flaky pastry topped with vanilla custard and fresh Central Otago Cherries and Raspberries with a scattering of white chocolate crisped up in the oven and would be perfect served with vanilla ice cream or cream.

I used what fruit I had on hand these would also be delicious with sliced apricots, peaches or any stone fruit and berries!

Fresh Raspberry, Cherry and Custard Tarts

Ingredients:

1/2 cup cherries, stones removed
1/2 cup raspberries
1/4 cup white chocolate, roughly chopped
1 cup cold vanilla custard
1 sheet of flaky pastry, cut into 4 squares

Method:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 180 degress.
  2. Line baking tray with baking paper and space the 4 cut out squares of pastry evenly apart on tray.
  3. Dollop 1/4 custard on the base of each piece of pastry, trying to keep it roughly in the center spread out slightly leaving a ring of pastry around the edge. Top with cherries, raspberries and white chocolate.
  4. Bake for 15 minutes until golden serve  warm finished with fresh mint and a dusting of icing sugar and a side of ice-cream or cream.

Serves: 4

Icing Sugar Pavlova

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With an abundance of eggs coming from our girls everyday I really needed to use them up. I got the idea in my head that Pavlova was on the cards. I was so excited I had not made a pav since Christmas. Sadly my sugar jar was empty! I nearly cried! Only type of sugar I had was icing sugar or confectioners sugar so it was either going to work or fail drastically. Here’s how the icing sugar pav turned out.

The Icing Sugar Pavlova

With a crisp and crunchy outer shell and a marshmallow center topped with vanilla cream and slightly tart boysenberries this pav went down a treat.

Ingredients

  • 6 egg whites
  • 2 3/4 cup icing sugar, sifted
  • 1 tbsp cornflour, sifted
  • 1 tbsp white vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla bean paste
  • 2 tbsp boiling water

Boysenberry Compote

  • 1 cup frozen boysenberries
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/2 cup icing sugar
  • Whipped cream to serve

Method:

  1.  Preheat oven to 200 degrees.
  2. In a stand mixer with whisk attachment, add the first 5 ingredients and whisk for 12 minutes until glossy, light and hard peaks are reached, see picture below.
  3. Line baking tray with baking paper and, scrap out egg mix trying to keep it all in the center piled up this makes it easier to shape into a circle.
  4. Using a rubber scraper or pallet knife move it side to side pushing the meringue out evenly in a circle shape, to shape the sides drag your pallet knife up from base to top, like in the picture below.
  5. Bake at 200 degrees for 2 minutes then drop 100 degrees for 1 1/2 hours.
  6. In medium size pot add boysenberries, water and icing sugar, bring to the boil and then simmer until thicken slightly.
  7. Turn oven off and leave meringue to cool inside, once cooler open the oven door slightly. Allow to cool and set aside.
  8. Once cool top with whipped cream and boysenberry compote.

Slices: 8-10

Add first 5 ingredients, whisk for 6 minutes add boiling water and continue to whisk for further 6 minutes.

Add first 5 ingredients, whisk for 6 minutes add boiling water and continue to whisk for further 6 minutes.

Meringue should be glossy, light, fluffy and hold stiff peaks.

Meringue should be glossy, light, fluffy and hold stiff peaks.

Place heaped meringue onto lined baking tray and shape.

Place heaped meringue onto lined baking tray and shape.

Using pallet knife draw if from the base to the top to add a nice design and structure to the pav.

Using pallet knife draw if from the base to the top to add a nice design and structure to the pav.

Ready for the oven, bake at 200 degrees for 2 minutes then drop to 100 degress for a further 1 /12 hours.

Ready for the oven, bake at 200 degrees for 2 minutes then drop to 100 degrees for a further 1 /12 hours.

My finished pavlova has a few cracks on the top but i can hide that with cream all and all not bad.

My finished pavlova has a few cracks on the top but i can hide that with cream all and all not bad.

Side view slight crack but I like that you know its home made perfect in-perfection.

Side view slight crack but I like that you know its home made perfect in-perfection.

Top with whipped cream and boysenberry compote.

Top with whipped cream and boysenberry compote.

Crisp outside and marsh marsh-mellow center the perfect homemade meringue.

Crisp outside and marsh marshmallow center the perfect homemade meringue.

Sinful Chocolate Boysenberry Cheesecake

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Sinful Chocolate Boysenberry Cheesecake

I received a goodie parcel from Equagold a few days ago and as today is my day off a “Saturday to most”. So I decided that it was time to hit the kitchen and get the creative hat on. I was thinking cheesecake however I didn’t want to make the classic biscuit crumb so i opted for my moist chocolate velvet cake.

The end result is bloody delicious if I may say so myself. WOW sums up my reaction when my fork hit the chocolate boysenberry cheesecake!!! Words basically cannot describe this dessert it was basically like being in heaven! Creamy velvet chocolate cheesecake with a moist velvet cake finished with slightly sweet boysenberry gel! No need to buy chocolate and melt it into this cheesecake, Ive used Equagolds Premium Dutch Cocoa Powder it is just divine, you cant tell that its cocoa not melted chocolate.

Equagold is creating outstanding products if you would like to get your hands on Equagolds Dutch Cocoa Powder I have used in this recipe please click this link : Equagold Online Store

If you want to impress someone or treat yourself this is the recipe for you!!

Ingredients:
Velvet Cake Base
1 1/4 cup white flour
1 cup white sugar
1/4 Equagold Premium Dutch Cocoa
1 tsp baking soda
pinch salt
250ml water
1/3 cup canola oil
1 tsp vanilla essence
1 tbsp white vinegar
Chocolate Cheesecake Filling
250gm cream cheese, room temp
2 heaped tbsp Equagold Premium Dutch Cocoa, sifted
1 cup icing sugar, sifted
1/4 tsp Equagold vanilla bean paste or 1 vanilla bean, scraped
1/2 cup cream
1/2 tsp gelatine
1 tbsp boiling water
Boysenberry Gel
1 1/2 cup frozen boysenberries
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup water
1 1/2 tsp gelatine
1 tbsp boiling water

Method:
1. Pre-heat oven to 180 degrees.
2. In large mixing bowl sift all dry ingredients for the velvet cake, once sifted whisk the dry ingredients to aerate and evenly mix together.
3. In a separate bowl combine all liquids for the velvet cake, pour into the center of the dry ingredients and mix through to combine. (Do not over mix)
4. Pour into a lined spring form cake tin and bake for 25-30minutes until when tested with a skewer it comes out clean.
5. Remove from oven and turn put onto a cooling rack, once cold using a bread or serrated knife cut the top of the cake off. *see the picture
6. Using a stand mixer or hand mixer attach the whisk attachment, in the mixing bowl combine, cream cheese, sifted icing sugar and cocoa and vanilla. Whisk together until smooth.
7. Scrap down the sides and be sure to get the bottom of the bowl, add cream and whisk to combine.
8. in a small bowl sprinkle gelatine over boiling water and microwave for 15 seconds, stir well and whisk into cheesecake filling.
9. Using the same cake tin as you baked the cake, reline and this time line the sides, a little cooking spray before you put the baking paper around will make it stay in place.
10. Place the trimmed cake base in the bottom of the lined cake tin, followed by the cheesecake filling. Smooth over and place in the fridge.
11. Now onto the final stage, take a small saucepan combine boysenberry’s, sugar and water. Bring to a simmer and cook until sugar is dissolved around 4 minutes, add squeeze of lemon. Bloom the gelatine the same as for the cheesecake filling step and add to the boysenberry mix.
12. Allow to cool and pour over the cheesecake filling, place in fridge for 1-2 hours. 13. Serve with whipped cream or yoghurt.

Serves:8-12

Sift all dry ingredients for the velvet cake.

Sift all dry ingredients for the velvet cake.

Whisk together wet cake ingredients and add to dry.

Whisk together wet cake ingredients and add to dry.

Stir to combine and pour into a lined medium sized spring form cake tin.

Stir to combine and pour into a lined medium sized spring form cake tin.

Bake at 180 degrees for 25-30minutes.

Bake at 180 degrees for 25-30minutes.

Once cooked and cooled, remove the lump over the cake to make it flat. ( you can eat the off cuts :)

Once cooked and cooled, remove the lump over the cake to make it flat. ( you can eat the off cuts 🙂

Leveled cake.

Leveled cake.

Whisk in 1/2 cup cream, scrape down the sides.

Whisk in 1/2 cup cream, scrape down the sides.

In stand mixer bowl combine cream cheese, sifted icing sugar, cocoa and vanilla. Whisk until smooth.

In stand mixer bowl combine cream cheese, sifted icing sugar, cocoa and vanilla. Whisk until smooth.

Add dissolved gelatin mixture, mix well to combine.

Add dissolved gelatin mixture, mix well to combine.

Line cake tin bottom and sides.

Line cake tin bottom and sides.

Add trimmed cake followed by cheesecake filling.

Add trimmed cake followed by cheesecake filling.

Smooth over and refrigerate.

Smooth over and refrigerate.

Combine 1 1/2 cup boysenberries in medium pot with sugar and water. Simmer for 4 minutes add gelatine mixture, cool.

Combine 1 1/2 cup boysenberries in medium pot with sugar and water. Simmer for 4 minutes add gelatine mixture, cool.

Pour over cheesecake filling and refrigerate for 1-2 hours if possible over night.

Pour over cheesecake filling and refrigerate for 1-2 hours if possible over night.

Remove baking paper. Using a hot knife cut a medium size wedge.

Remove baking paper. Using a hot knife cut a medium size wedge.

Serve with whipped cream and a dusting of icing sugar and cocoa.

Serve with whipped cream and a dusting of icing sugar and cocoa.

Enjoy

Enjoy

Banana and Salted Caramel Filo Pastries

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Not your usual filo filling but hey I love to live on the wild side and experiment with new things! It was my first time making Salted Caramel and I had a heap of over ripe bananas and left over filo pastry. So I thought why not sounds like a tasty combination of flavour.

Boy was I right!!  Salty sweet caramel with soft banana, crunchy light filo casing and toasted walnuts with smooth creamy mascarpone with was an easy tasty dessert!!

Banana and Salted Caramel Filo Pastries

Ingredients:

3 over ripe bananas
1/2 tsp cinnamon
4 heaped dessert spoons of salted caramel
8 sheets filo pastry
200g butter, melted

50g walnuts, roughly chopped

100g mascarpone
cinnamon for dusting

Method:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 180 degrees.
  2. Line large baking tray with baking paper or a silicon mat.
  3. Combine banana and cinnamon in small bowl, mash with a fork.
  4. Take filo pastry lay it out flat and cover with a damp cloth. (This prevents it from dry and cracking which makes it hard to use!)
  5. Take two sheets of filo pastry, cover the remaining. Lye it down flat, brush evenly with melted butter, fold in half vertically.
  6. Place two heaped spoonfuls of mashed banana in the let hand corner of the folded pastry followed a heaped dessert spoon of salted caramel.
  7. Brush around the mixture with a little butter.
  8. Fold the parcel in a triangle over to the left and repeat folding until you have a small strip left, brush with melted butter and seal. Place seal side down on baking tray.
  9. Repeat until mixture and filo pastry is used up.
  10. Brush all finished triangle pastry parcels with butter and sprinkle with chopped walnuts.
  11. Bake for 15-16 minutes until golden brown.
  12. Serve with mascarpone and a dusting of cinnamon.

Makes: 4 filo triangles

Combine banana and cinnamon mash with a fork.

Combine banana and cinnamon mash with a fork.

Cover filo pastry with a damp cloth to prevent drying out and hard to work with.

Cover filo pastry with a damp cloth to prevent drying out and hard to work with.

Take two piece of filo, brush with butter and fold in half vertically.

Take two piece of filo, brush with butter and fold in half vertically.

Once mixture is in the left hand corner brush around with butter and fold over to form a triangle. Repeat until only a strip of pastry left.

Once mixture is in the left hand corner brush around with butter and fold over to form a triangle. Repeat until only a strip of pastry left.

Brush with butter and seal. Place seal side down on lined baking tray.

Brush with butter and seal. Place seal side down on lined baking tray.

Brush with butter and sprinkle with walnuts. Bake until golden brown.

Brush with butter and sprinkle with walnuts. Bake until golden brown.

Serve hot with a dollop of mascarpone and a dusting of cinnamon.

Serve hot with a dollop of mascarpone and a dusting of cinnamon.

Sweet Sundays

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Sunday

A day that marks the end of another week. I have been pretty busy over the last week and haven’t been posting much at all lately. So I decided it was about time to get back into it. With the rain clouds hanging around and friends craving something sweet I thought of what I loved as a kid and when i think about it one of the top things would have to be mums chocolate caramel slice!!
Caramel slice is New Zealand favourite found in many grandparents recipe books it brings back memories for all.

Heres an easy recipe for chocolate caramel slice from my family to yours.

Chocolate Caramel Slice

Ingredients:

Base
175g butter, softened
1/2 cup caster sugar
1 egg, beaten
2 cups plain flour
1 tsp. baking powder
3 tbsp. cocoa

Caramel Filling
1 1/2 375g cans sweetened condensed milk
5 tbsp. golden syrup
30g butter, cubed

Chocolate Icing
2 cups icing sugar, sifted
3 tbsp. cocoa, sifted
2-3 tbsp boiling water
1 tsp butter, melted

Method:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 180 degrees. Line medium deep rectangular baking dish with baking paper.
  2. In stand mixer bowl combine softened butter and sugar, beat for 5 minutes until pale yellow and fluffy.
  3. Add beaten egg and beat until combined.
  4. Sift in flour, cocoa and baking soda beat for 1 minute until well combined.
  5. Pour into lined baking dish, press evenly over the base, dock with a fork and bake for 15 minutes.
  6. In a small pot combine condense milk and golden syrup. Cook over a medium heat for 3 minutes until well combined.
  7. Whisk in cubes of butter, until incorporated, cook for 2 minutes until mixture thickens stirring so the bottom doesn’t burn.
  8. Remove base from oven, pour over caramel and return to the oven for 10-15 minutes until the caramel is lightly browned and bubbling.
  9. Remove from oven and cool.
  10. Once slice is cool in a small bowl combine icing sugar, cocoa, melted butter and hot water. stir with a fork until thick spreadable consistency is reached. ( you don’t want it to runny.)
  11. Pour chocolate icing onto the cooled slice evenly smooth it over and allow to set before cutting.
Cream butter and sugar until pale yellow and fluffy.

Cream butter and sugar until pale yellow and fluffy.

Sift flour, baking powder and cocoa into creamed butter.

Sift flour, baking powder and cocoa into creamed butter.

Correct texture for base.

Correct texture for base.

Press evenly into lined baking dish and dock with a fork.

Press evenly into lined baking dish and dock with a fork.

Add condense milk and golden syrup to a pot cook for 3 minutes.

Add condense milk and golden syrup to a pot cook for 3 minutes.

Whisk in butter and cook for a further 2 minutes.

Whisk in butter and cook for a further 2 minutes.

Pour caramel into pre-cooked slice base.

Pour caramel into pre-cooked slice base.

Smooth over.

Smooth over.

Bake for a further 10-15 minutes until lightly golden.

Bake for a further 10-15 minutes until lighly golden.

Once cool, ice with chocolate icing and enjoy.

Once cool, ice with chocolate icing and enjoy.

The Ultimate Cookies and Cream Cheesecake

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The Ultimate Cookies and Cream Cheesecake

This cheesecake is a no baking required easy to follow recipe. With subtle hints of lemon it goes down a treat with creamy, chocolaty cheesecake. This truly melts in your mouth, perfect way to treat the family or special someone.

Ingredients:
500 grams oreos
70 grams butter, melted
2x 250 gram tubs cream cheese, room temp and soft
2 cups icing sugar, sifted
1 lemon zest and  juice
1 tsp. vanilla essence
2 tsp. gelatin powder
2 tbsp. cold water
250 ml cream, soft whip
3/4 block Whittaker’s milk chocolate
125ml cream, hot/just boiling

Extra Oreos  to decorate and Cookie and Cream Hershey’s Kisses.

Method:

  1. Line medium spring-form cake tin with baking paper as seen below.
  2. Place 280 grams of oreos in food processor and pulse until a fine sand texture is reached. Add melted butter and pulse to combine.
  3. Pour crumb into lined cake tin, press firmly together to form an even base, place in fridge.
  4. Using a hand or stand mixer, whip cream to soft peaks and set aside. Add cream cheese to clean bowl and whisk until smooth and are no lumps, add icing sugar, vanilla and lemon, whisk to combine.
  5. Combine gelatin and water, microwave for 30 sec stir until dissolved and slightly cool, add to cream cheese mix.
  6. Take 170 grams oreos and roughly pulse in food processor to achieve chunky texture.
  7. Add chunky oreos and whipped cream fold through until just combined, pour on top of the chilled cheesecake base and return to fridge.
  8. Add chipped chocolate into bowl, the smaller the faster it will melt.
  9. Place cream in a small saucepan and heat until rapidly simmering , stirring to avoid burning. Pour hot cream over chocolate, allow to sit for 2 minutes.
  10. Whisk the cream and chocolate together, it will be a thick glossy texture, whisk until there are no lumps.
  11. Pour chocolate over chilled cheesecake and return to the fridge for 1 hour until chocolate layer is set.
  12. Remove from fridge, using a small hot knife gently run your knife around the edge of the cheesecake, then remove the spring-form ring.
  13. With a palette knife pull on the baking paper gently and place knife between cheesecake base and baking paper, slide cheesecake off onto serving dish.
  14. Decorate the edge with xtra oreos and cookie and cream Hershey kisses.
  15. Run sharp knife under hot water, dry and cut cheesecake, if you want clean cuts do this for every cut, handy to have a jug of boiling water beside you at this point.
  16. Serve on its one or perfect with plain yoghurt.

Serves: 10-12 Slices

Place oreos in food processor until sand texture is reached, add melted butter combine.

Place oreos in food processor until sand texture is reached, add melted butter combine.

Perfect consistency for the base.

Perfect consistency for the base.

Spring form medium size cake tin.

Spring form medium size cake tin.

Large piece of baking paper

Large piece of baking paper

Place baking paper over the bottom of the tin and place on the sides, seal closed.

Place baking paper over the bottom of the tin and place on the sides, seal closed.

Rip excess paper, leaving a small amount to hold onto.

Rip excess paper, leaving a small amount to hold onto.

Pour in prepared cheesecake base.

Pour in prepared cheesecake base.

Press evenly and firmly into the base of the tin, set in fridge.

Press evenly and firmly into the base of the tin, set in fridge.

Add second measure of oreos to food processor and pulse until oreos are chunky.

Add second measure of oreos to food processor and pulse until oreos are chunky.

Roughly chop 1 block chocolate.

Roughly chop 1 block chocolate.

Pour over ganache and set in fridge for 45-60 minutes until set.

Pour over ganache and set in fridge for 45-60 minutes until set.

With a sharp knife gently run a knife around the edge of the tin. then remove the outer cake ring.

With a sharp knife gently run a knife around the edge of the tin. then remove the outer cake ring.

 

Decorate with crumbled oreos and cookie and cream Hershey's kisses.

Decorate with crumbled oreos and cookie and cream Hershey’s kisses.

Slice cheesecake with a hot knife.

Slice cheesecake with a hot knife.

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Treat your mum this mothers day

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Coconut, Rhubarb and Orange Panna Cotta

This is a simple and easy dessert that utilizes in season rhubarb, I got my rhubarb from the Tokoroa Community Garden, $2 for 10 stalks and grown by lovely people. This dessert would be perfect to surprise your mum on mothers day make it on the Saturday and have it on mothers day Sunday the 11th May.

Ingredients:

1 can light coconut cream
300 ml milk
1/2 vanilla bean or 1 tsp vanilla essence
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup boiling water
1 tbsp. gelatin
1 orange, juice and zest
4 stalks rhubarb, wash
100 g white sugar
2 tbsp. water

Method:

  1. Combine coconut cream, milk, sugar and vanilla in a medium pot and simmer until sugar is dissolved. (do not boil)
  2. Place boiling water in a small bowl and sprinkle over gelatin, stir until dissolved.
  3. Pour gelatin mix into hot coconut milk, stir to combine.
  4. Fill 6 ramekin’s or  small cups evenly 3/4 way to the top.
  5. Refrigerate for 5 hours or for best results overnight.
  6. Slice rhubarb into 4 cm long pieces then cut in half-length wise, set aside.
  7. In a medium size pot combine sugar, orange juice, water and sliced rhubarb, simmer for around 5-8 minutes until rhubarb is tender, don’t stir as the rhubarb will fall apart.
  8. Remove rhubarb and cool on a plate, now bring the syrup used to poach rhubarb to a rapid boil and boil for around 2 minutes until liquid reduces, stirring to avoid burning.
  9. Remove from heat and cool.
  10. Remove panna cotta from fridge, it will be set and should be able to wobble it and it should stay together. (like consistency of set jelly)
  11. Top with poached rhubarb, and a drizzle of syrup finish with orange zest.
  12. Enjoy 🙂

Serves: 4-6

For best results it is best that you make the panna cotta the day before you are going to eat it as it will be completely set, it is a very delicate dessert and is velvety texture is along the lines of a jelly or set custard.

 

 

Dissolve gelatin in hot water.

Dissolve gelatin in hot water.

Fill cups or ramekin's 3/4 way up.

Fill cups or ramekin’s 3/4 way up, and refrigerate.

Poach rhubarb until tender, do not stir.

Poach rhubarb until tender, do not stir.

Reduce poaching syrup.

Reduce poaching syrup.

Reduced poaching syrup a beautiful pink colour.

Reduced poaching syrup a beautiful pink colour.

 

Spoon over reduced syrup, around 2 tsp.

Spoon over reduced syrup, around 2 tsp.

Ready to enjoy.

Ready to enjoy.