Tag Archives: Berries

Triple berry pavlova

12 Sep

wpid-IMG_20130812_173919.jpgWith all the egg whites from my Key Lime Pie I made a while ago, I made a bucketload of meringues (hate anything going to waste!)

And so, a wonderfully crisp yet chewy inside pavlova base was created, and subsequently popped in the freezer to keep.

A few egg white’s and a bit of sugar expand to huge volumes when whipped a little. It’s surprising! I used a little less sugar than recommended as I don’t like them too sweet and sickly. They still come out with a great texture though. It’s important that they are whisked to as stiff as possible – do the upside down bowl on the head test! When cooking, ensure you resist the temptation to open the oven door whilst they’re cooking. In fact, leave them in the oven until the oven has completely cooled after you have turned it off.

Served with freshly whipped cream and fresh summer berries is a super quick amazingly fresh yet indulgent pudding.

 

 

wpid-IMG_20130812_173740.jpgMeringue:
Egg whites from 2 large or 3 medium eggs

75g caster sugar

1tsp white wine vinegar

To decorate:
3 small punnets blueberries, raspberries and strawberries

Small pot of double cream, whipped (or as much as you like really!)

Method:
1. Preheat the oven to 110C. Line a baking sheet with greaseproof paper. Whip egg whites until very very stiff, add the sugar and vinegar and whisk again until just as stiff.

2. With a dessertspoon, put generous portions into a circular shape on the baking tray. There should be peaks around the edge of the circle, and it should be flat in the middle, which is where laden with cream and fruit!

3. Bake for about 3 hours. Wait to cool completely and then decorate

wpid-IMG_20130812_173601.jpg

 

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Super-quick last-minute birthday butterfly cupcakes

8 Nov


As part of my uni studies, I have been lucky enough to end up in Nice, France for the year (sun, warmth, amazing fresh seafood and Mediterranean veg, not to mention specialist olive oil shops (!) – my HEAVEN!)

Tonight is my friend’s birthday meal and it’s quite frankly illegal to have a birthday party without a birthday cake in my eyes (and stomach…)! Patisserie shops are everywhere, my local patisserie has a selection of around 20 bite size variations of larger patisserie, that changes almost every day (I am currently in the process of slowly trying every one…)

However, larger celebration ‘cakes’ – are around 35euros a piece. In France, you can’t really get a traditional birthday Victoria sponge, and my student pocket couldn’t really afford such a splurge on a cake, so I thought it would be a better idea to buy a selection of the mini delights, and make my own last minute, incredibly easy traditional British cupcakes!

Ingredients are minimal, stuff to be found in your cupboard/fridge whatever the day, making it an ideal Sunday afternoon unplanned bake (in France, even in the middle of Nice, EVERYTHING shuts down on a Sunday!)

Makes around 12 large cupcakes –
100g butter softened

140g caster sugar

150g self raising flour (I used plain flour+1tsp baking powder due to the lack of self-raising in France)

2 large eggs

To decorate:
150g butter softened
280g icing sugar
12 frozen (defrost first) or fresh raspberries, or any other berry you fancy!

TIP: Buying a large bag of frozen berries will last you ages, it’s about half the price of fresh berries, and you can keep them in your freezer for whenever you fancy a berry fix!

Method:

  •  Preheat your oven to 180 Celsius (fan)
  • In a large mixing bowl, add all the cake ingredients and combine until you have a smooth batter. You may have a add a few drops of milk to make the batter fall  off a wooden spoon when tapped.
  • Line a 12 hole muffin tin with cases and fill each one about 2/3rd full.
  • Bake for around 20-25 minutes, until slightly golden and firm to touch.
  • Whilst cupcakes are cooling on a wire rack, make the buttercream. Soften the butte r in a large bowl, little by little sieve the icing sugar into the bowl, mixing until you have a good consistency. The butterceam should not be too runny. It should be thick enough to hold shape on top of the cupcake.
  • To make the butterfly wings, use a sharp knife to slice off the top part of each cake. Cut that circle in half.
  • Add some buttercream inside the hole that you have just made in the top of the cake, then arrange the two halves on top of the buttercream at an angle to make the wings.
  • Repeat for each cake, then pop a raspberry on each cake and enjoy!

Maximum pleasure with minimum ingredients and time!