Blackcurrant and Violet Mousse Hedeghogs – an absolute delight

These little delights certainly tested my skills and also resulted in a huge thumbs up from my harshest critic, the beloved-whose-palate-must-be-pleased-and-thrilled.  They are a delicious confection from Adriano Zumbo (more on him later) consisting of 10 elements based around blackcurrants which certainly tested my skills and used ingredients I have not come across before. The…

Fruity Meringues – a zingy revelation

These little marvels were discovered by me in Adriano Zumbo’s recipe book “The Zumbo Files”. What makes them a total revelation is the freeze dried fruit powder.  This is folded into the meringue mixture, and not only does it give the meringues their colour, it also gives them an intense fruit flavour. These one’s are…

Nut Praline

Nut Praline is a patisserie basic that is used to provide crunch and flavour to chocolates and cakes.  It was, as with so many other things in the world of patisserie, invented in France by a french chef called Clement Lassagne. It is made by coating roasted nuts in caramel, which is then broken up…

Inverted Sugar Syrup

I have recently done a recipe that called for inverted sugar, an ingredient that I have not come across before.  It is used by Patissieres because it crystallises less easily than normal sugar,  and baked items made from it tend to retain moisture more easily so have a longer shelf life.  It can bought commercially…

Raspberry and Vanilla Buche – leftovers can be fun

The beloved and I have a constant battle over the freezer (actually make that freezers).  Our wartime-born mothers taught us that waste is a sin, so all left overs go in the freezer. The problem is they have a tendency never to re-emerge from them.  A recent audit revealed some most suspect unlabelled objects that…

Honey Custard, Raspberry and White Chocolate Mousse Entremet

I have definitely gone slightly entremet mad since Christmas, and whilst I am also trying to be good and avoid too much sugar, we do still have a social life and we still like to entertain friends.  I made this for a garden party we hosted last week for the participants in the biennial Open…

Rhubarb and Custard Buche

Now I have to confess to be slightly late in posting this one, so apologies and please store it up for when Rhubarb is in the shops again.  That being said Rhubarb and Custard is an absolute English classic and frankly cannot be beaten as a flavour combination, be it in a Crumble (a personal…

Checkerboard 30th Birthday Cake

My niece Phoebe hit 30 this weekend. 30 ! When on earth did that happen?  To celebrate she had a big party with 80 people coming so it definitely called for a big celebration cake. When I was planning this I realised I don’t do cakes that often, and certainly not big celebration cakes.  The…

Italian Meringue Butter Cream – The Story of a Rescue Mission

This weekend was my niece’s 30th Birthday party and I made her cake which will feature on the blog soon. Always wanting to do something new I decided to try my hand at Italian Meringue Buttercream. It seemed to have a number of advantages over the standard (and for me overly sweet) standard buttercream the…

Layered Mousse Cake 2 Ways – with lots of trouble

There are times in baking when trying something new, that you are stretched that little bit too much. For New Year’s Eve I decided to make another of Maren Lubbe’s (of Malus Köstlichkeiten) fabulous wonders, a Whisky and Chocolate mousse cake encased in stripy joconde sponge topped off with chocolate mirror glaze.   The stripy…

Bûche de Noël – a Chocolate and Marzipan Christmas Repast

Every Christmas I hunt for an alternative to the traditional British Christmas pudding which as I get older I find I like less and less after the big Christmas day meal.  Usually it is something involving meringue, but this year under the influence of Maren Lubbe’s blog MaLu’s Koestlichkeiten and the awfully produced Netflix  Bake Off…