Category Archives: Desserts

Rhubarb Mini Crumbles

You know we love our mini crumbles right? Quick, easy, delicious and perfect for a little naughtyness after dinner! This one is a very seasonal version with some beautiful pink rhubarb bought at the same time as the celeriac from this post.

Lovely Rhubarb

To make two little ramekins of spring you’ll need:

  • 1 long stick/2 sticks of rhubarb, chopped into roughly 2 inch pieces
  • Sugar, to taste
  • 20g  unsalted butter, cubed
  • 30g plain flour
  • (optional: small handful of oats)

Pop the rhubarb in a small saucepan with a splash of water and add 1 tbsp of sugar to start with. Once it’s bubbling give it a taste and add as much sugar as you want, we think ours had about 2 tbsp of sugar in. Preheat the oven to 180°C while the rhubarb bubbles away for about 10 minutes.

Rhubarb In Pan

Rhubarb Stewing

To make the crumble topping rub the butter into the flour with about 1 tsp of sugar and add in the oats if using until you have a lumpy-sand texture. All that’s left to do is divide the rhubarb compote between two ramekins, top with the crumble and bake for about 15-20 minutes. We served ours with a little scoop of vanilla icecream on top for extra indulgence!

Rhubarb Crumble with Ice Cream

Go on… treat yourself this weekend!

Spontaneous Pear Crumble 2 Ways

We recently came into possession of a couple of pears (by way of a charity walk-to-work day organised by Bird!) and we thought that rather than just eat them we’d make them into crumbles – much more interesting to blog! We’ve done these mini crumbles before, with apple, but we thought we would give you a couple of more interesting flavour ideas. We’ve gone with a couple of contrasting flavours – a sweet, spicy sugar syrup with cardamom, cinnamon and star anise and a tart, fruity alternative made with raspberries.

Ingredients – for the topping, you’ll need (makes 2 mini crumbles):

  • 1 tsp unsalted butter
  • 2 tbsp plain flour
  • 1/2 tbsp brown sugar

To make the topping, simply rub together the butter and flour in your fingertips until you get breadcrumbs, then add the sugar and mix together. Easy or what?!

To make the sweet and spicy crumbles, you’ll need (makes 2 mini crumbles):

  • 1 cardamom pod
  • 1/2 cinnamon stick
  • 1 star anise
  • 2 tbsp caster sugar
  • 2 tbsp water
  • 1 pear

To make the sugar syrup, add all of the ingredients to a pan and bring to a boil over a medium heat. Leave it bubbling away to let the flavours infuse for about 5 minutes. If you see the sugar syrup start to darken, stop – it’s done! Chop your pear up into small (~1 cm) cubes and put it into 2 ramekins (or other small dishes), pour over the sugar syrup (taking out the whole spices) and cover with a couple of centimetres (just over half an inch) of topping.

Is it too early to start talking about Christmas...?
Is it too early to start talking about Christmas…?

For the fruity berry crumbles, you’ll need (again, makes 2 mini crumbles):

  • 2 tbsp raspberries
  • 1 pear

Almost no preparation required here, just chop up your pear up into small cubes and put it into 2 small ramekins, and cover with topping. We keep some frozen raspberries in the freezer, which are useful for all sorts of things in the winter.

Raspberry and Pear

Once the crumbles are assembled, place in an oven at 180 C for 20-25 minutes – you should see the top go a lovely golden colour. Sit back and enjoy your tasty, warming winter treat!

Crumble and Coffee
Spicy Pear Crumble and Coffee
Pear and Raspberry Crumble
Pear and Raspberry Crumble

Fluffy Lemon Pancakes

We made these pancakes a long time ago and then forgot to post them… oops! But we’re posting them for you now as so many people will be baking their hearts out in the run up to Christmas (sorry about the c-bomb guys!) and this is a rather neat way of using up some leftovers. Remember when we made these lemon tarts? It made a bit too much mixture and it was far too tasty to contemplate throwing it down the sink so we popped it in the fridge and vowed to make something with it the following night. What we came up with was fluffy American-style lemon pancakes! Neither of us had ever made an American-style pancake before (British ones are more like crepes, they don’t have a rising agent) so it was pure making it up as we went along but these turned out beautifully. The measurements are total guesses, you’ll just have to go on the look and feel of your batter.

Ingredients

  • Leftover Tarte au Citron mixture
  • About 75g of plain flour (but this was just a guess based on how much lemon filling we had left)
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • A little milk

Simply chuck the flour in to the lemon tart mixture and mix together, add the baking powder and then drizzle in milk while whisking until you reach a thick, liquid consistency. Then just heat a little butter and flavourless oil in a frying pan and dollop spoonfuls of your mixture in! Ours took around 2 minutes on one side and 1 minute on the other but just try to keep an eye on them. They’ll keep warm in a low oven and then eat them with whatever you fancy!

Pancake cooking

We hadn’t planned on making pancakes so we just had ours with a little butter on top but these would be lovely with some honey, maple syrup, or berries and yoghurt. We had some cut up into strips over yoghurt with some honey drizzled on for breakfast the next morning! If you don’t happen to have any lemon tart mixture lying around then you could make a standard American pancake recipe and add in some lemon zest for a citrusy kick.

Lemon Pancakes

Baked Plums with Vanilla Cream

We’ve been pretty crazy for desserts recently, and in celebration of the return to our televisions of Paul Hollywood and Mary Berry (yes, we’re Bake Off nerds – are you surprised?) we thought we’d post another sweet recipe. This recipe for baked plums is criminally easy, quick and absolutely delicious.

Start off by preheating the oven to 170°C.  Halve your plums and take out the stones then place them on a baking sheet, flat side up.  Pile them up with a small knob of butter and heaped teaspoon of brown sugar.  Once the oven has heated up, put them in – they should take about 10 minutes.

Pile it up! It's still a portion of fruit, right?
Pile it up! It’s still a portion of fruit, right?

You’ll just have time to softly whip some double cream (about 100 ml for two people) to serve it with.  Once whipped, fold in 1 tsp icing sugar and 1 tsp vanilla extract.

Not exactly a healthy lunchbox snack anymore!
Not exactly a healthy lunchbox snack anymore!

Serve the warm plums with the cream on top – it will start to melt straight away so eat it quickly!  We had some meringues lying around which we crushed over the top, but a great alternative would be ginger biscuits.

We hope you enjoy this one! Hopefully it will get you through the long week’s wait before the next installment of the Great British Bake Off. Do you have a favourite yet?

Glazed Mango and Coconut

It’s been a long week. It’s been raining, windy and we had the Thursday blues… we needed dessert! Time for an indulgent, exotic treat. We had Thai food last night (as our Instagram followers will know) so wanted a dessert which fitted in with this, and after some conspiring over the phone on our walks home from work we came up with a mango-y, yoghurt-y, coconut-y kinda thing. We didn’t really have a clue how it would turn out but we have a rule – if all nice things go in then you’ll end up with something nice!

Preheat the oven to around 150°C and once it’s heated up put some flaked coconut (not desiccated!) in a small roasting dish and whack it in the oven. You want it to be lightly golden in places by the end so keep an eye on it and mix it around every few minutes as it toasts quickly.

While it’s toasting take the cheeks off the mango. A mango stone is pretty flat which means either side there are lovely big hunks of mango which come off neatly like so:

Mango slice

Then go to town hacking up as much of the rest of the mango as you can, making sure you remove the skin on these pieces too. Once you’ve done this put all of the little pieces (not the cheeks) in a blender and whizz up with a bit of water until you have a rough puree. Then heat a griddle pan, and after lightly dusting the cheeks with icing sugar to help with the caramelisation, put the cheeks cut side down into the pan. This should take around 5 minutes on a medium to high heat, try not to check them too often as you want beautiful lines, but do keep an eye. Once it’s cooked put it on a clean surface to cool down for a few minutes and do the same with the toasted coconut.

Dust mango

Mango cook

Cooked mango

Then it’s time to put it all together! Grab a few spoonfuls of natural or greek yoghurt in a bowl and lightly ripple about half of the mango puree through it. Place the caramelised mango on the yoghurt, spoon over the rest of the puree and top with the crunchy toasted coconut.

Mango and coconut dessert
Just what we needed to brighten up a wet Thursday!

Mini Apple Crumbles

We love dessert, but then who doesn’t? Sometimes when you get home from work though cooking dinner feels like enough effort, and dessert seems like just too much bother for a weeknight. It doesn’t have to be! This apple crumble is so easy to put together and then gives you about thirty minutes to relax with a coffee or a glass of wine while it cooks and you end up with a simple, comforting pudding to round off your meal.

All you need for this is 1 apple (cooking apples work best but we’ve used different varieties before and they’re all fine), flour, butter and sugar. Everything else is optional, we added some oats and a little cinnamon to our crumble topping but you can make it as simple or complex as you like. You could use almost any fruit for this, or even a mix – apple and blackberry, raspberries, pears, peaches – you name it, you can crumble it!

Preheat the oven to 170°C. To make the crumble topping simply rub plain white flour into around 2 tbsp of butter until you have a large breadcrumb consistency. You don’t want to add too much flour, this is a more buttery mixture so some larger lumps are normal. To this add a couple of tbsp of sugar, we wanted ours quite sweet to contrast with the tart apples but if you were using a sweeter fruit then maybe tone down the sugar a bit. We then added a handful of oats and around 1/2 tsp of cinnamon because it works beautifully with apples. That’s the topping done!

Don't worry about those lumps... it's buttery goodness!
Don’t worry about those lumps… it’s buttery goodness!

So just chop the fruit into a medium dice, coat with a little sugar if it’s a tart fruit and place in ramekins – you want it to be at least 2/3 of the way up, it will shrink down a lot when cooked. Sprinkle your crumble topping on top, we pile ours high! Put it on a baking tray and in the oven for about 20-30 minutes, until the top is golden-brown. Let it cool for a moment and then tuck in.

Crumbly mountains
Crumbly mountains

This would have been even better with some cream or ice cream but it was a pretty spontaneous dessert so we didn’t have any in. Give it a try for an indulgent moment with minimal effort.

We had ours after bangers and mash... what will you have yours after?
We had ours after bangers and mash… what will you have yours after?

Not so messy Mess

Just a dinky little post to brighten things up on a grey Monday (I initially wrote Tuesday and then Fats depressed me further by telling me it is Monday. Boo). This is a super quick dessert we threw together in the week, I even RAN to the shops in the RAIN for the berries, that’s commitment right there.

This probably took about 5 minutes to make so is perfect for mid week if you have a craving for something sweet.

Take the berries – we used a small pack (about 150g) for 2 people – and put them in a small saucepan with about 1 tsp of water and sugar to taste. We used raspberries but this would be equally lovely with strawberries, blackberries, blueberries, blackcurrants etc or even something like peaches, nectarines or plums. Because of the meringue and ice cream we added barely any sugar so the berries were really tart to provide a contrast but obviously do this to your personal taste.

Cook them for around 5 minutes on a medium heat until they have squashed down nicely and there is lots of beautiful bubbling sauce in the pan.

Raspberry bubbles foreverrrr
Raspberry bubbles foreverrrr

Pop a meringue (or two… we don’t judge!) in the bottom of a bowl. These ones were kindly given to us by Fats’ mum on a recent visit – food gifts will always be so well appreciated in our house!

Hi Fats' mum! Your baking is famous!
Hi Fats’ mum! Your baking is famous!

Then spoon over about half of the berry sauce, put some ice cream on top (this one is Häagen-Dazs Vanilla) and then pour the rest of the berry sauce over so the ice cream starts to melt. We also reserved a few berries before cooking them to pop on at the end for a bit more of a fresh taste.

It's about to get better...
Häagen-Dazs ist gut ja?

Ta-dah! So so easy it feels like cheating, and a lovely end to a meal – sweet, tart, hot, cold, gorgeous!

A rare shot of the elusive finished article.... usually whisked away too quickly to snap.
A rare shot of the elusive finished article…. usually whisked away too quickly to snap.