Berry Pavlova (or Meringues)


In my personal opinion, pavlova is one of the most beautiful and delicious desserts you can serve and it’s actually not that difficult to make, although it does take a while to cook. I think it’s the combination of colours, tastes and textures that makes it such a winner – it’s crispy, creamy, sweet and tangy (especially if you use berries) and it melts in your mouth. I’m salivating just thinking about it!

I use the same recipe to make individual choc-chip meringues, simply adding chunks of chopped-up dark chocolate to the mixture. (If you’re not afraid to go OTT, you could even add chopped chocolate to the pavlova mix.) These are always a huge hit at parties, especially when served with very slightly sweetened, whipped cream. People who don’t normally even like meringues have told me that mine are the only ones they will eat. 🙂

Choc-chip meringue

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Chocolate and Vanilla Puffs

Chocolate and vanilla puffs

From a supremely healthy seed and nut cracker recipe to an extremely decadent cream and chocolate confection in one week! Yes, it’s true – I’m all about embracing the extremes. 🙂

This recipe is perfect if you want to impress without putting in too much effort. It’s really easy because you’re using (ready-made) puff pastry, and just adding filling and topping. After all, how wrong can you go with cream and chocolate? Of course if you want to be adventurous and make your own pastry, feel free. I should warn you though that puff pastry is one of the most challenging to make yourself.

I also make something very similar using choux pastry, which ends up as éclairs with either cream or a lemon-flavoured filling and chocolate on top (or not). It takes more effort though as choux pastry is best made at home and the lemon filling requires several steps, although it’s well worth it for the result. One day I’ll post that recipe too but for today, we’ll go simple.

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Tri-Colour (or just Chocolate) Mousse

Tri-colour mousses

This is one of my favourite dessert recipes as it’s somewhere between a mousse and a cheesecake – two of my best things!

For years I’ve made it in a simple, dark chocolate version, then recently I decided to experiment with a tri-colour collection of dark chocolate, vanilla and strawberry. Because you’re working with three different flavours, you need to pay close attention to each step and do a bit of multi-tasking (which is why this recipe is classified as medium to difficult), but it worked really well and I think is well worth the trouble for a special occasion. Serve it in small bowls as it’s quite rich.

For those who aren’t feeling so adventurous, I’ve also included here the simpler, dark chocolate version, which is totally delicious on its own. Or you could check below for how to make the vanilla or strawberry versions instead. Each flavour is quite easy on its own – it’s just when you’re making three at once that it becomes more complicated.

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Strawberry, Banana and Avocado Smoothie

Strawberry, banana and avocado smoothie ready to drink

Looking for a quick, easy and healthy idea for breakfast (or for dessert)? This smoothie is a winner whenever you choose to have it and kids seem to love it too, probably because it tastes like ice-cream.

And yes, you read that right – there’s avocado in it. You needn’t worry though as it doesn’t taste like avo and it isn’t green, since the red colour of the strawberries pretty much overpowers everything else, and you end up with a pink smoothie which not only looks but also tastes delicious.

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Chocolate Oat Brownies

Chocolate oat brownies

These chunks of deliciousness are very quick and easy to make and are the perfect comfort food for those days when you just really need something to get by. They’re also great to take to get-togethers when you need to bring a plate, want to take something homemade and don’t have much time available to spend on it. As an added bonus, they still taste good a few days later, although it’s doubtful you’ll have any left by then!

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Chocolate cake

Foodie Quote:

“He showed the words ‘chocolate cake’ to a group of Americans and recorded their word associations.
‘Guilt’ was the top response.

If that strikes you as unexceptional, consider the response of French eaters to the same prompt: ‘celebration.’ “

– Michael Pollan, from In Defense of Food: An Eater’s Manifesto

Hmmm, I wonder which attitude towards food is healthier??

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Spiced Carrot Cookies

Spiced carrot cookies

These spiced bites are a bit like a carrot cake but in soft and chewy cookie form. They are perfect for a snack or teatime treat for kids or adults and you can make them as healthy as you like, depending on what ingredients you use. They are slightly sweet but not too much so and the sweetness comes naturally from the carrots, raisins and honey. Continue reading