Warm cherry sauce

Warm cherry sauce

black cherry sauce

Black Cherry Sauce

Cherry sauce came to mind when recentlybeing asked for some suggestions for a birthday party. This is fantastic and really simple dessert idea that is a winner every time and is so simple to prepare for just a few people or a huge crowd. It can also be used as an accompaniment with duck or pork by simply leaving out the cinnamon and letting the sauce reduce further. (for 4 desserts)

What you need

1 400g tin cherries
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon/ 1 cinnamon stick
Good ice cream

The process

Add the cherries with all of their juices straight from the tin into a pot on a high heat.

Bring the sauce to almost boiling, reduce the heat, add cinnamon and allow to simmer for about 5 minutes or so to warm through thoroughly.

If you like a thick sauce for your dessert or are serving with duck or pork, just let it simmer for a few more minutes to reduce slightly and thicken.

Spoon over the ice cream and you are done.

Remember to go out and buy really good ice cream, it makes such a massive difference. Another tip is to take the ice cream out of thye frezzer and put it in the fridge about an hour before you serve, this lets it soften up ever so slightly.

If you like this you will love the Eton Mess recipe

Served with the roast pork belly it is amazing. It is also really good if you add tinned pineapple pieces to it for a dessert sauce.

Banana fritters

Banana fritters

banana-frittersBanana friters are a fantastic winter dessert and this recipe can be used for any firm fruit, make banana, apple or even pineapple fritters. They are best served with a really good ice cream. (4 servings)

What you need

4 bananas ends removed and cut in half
2 cups self raising flour
1/2 teaspoon bicarb of soda
1 1/2 cups water
cake flour
Oil for deep frying

Cinnamon and caster sugar for dusting.

The process

Sift together the self raising flour and the bicarb of soda into a bowl. Add the water and mix to form a smooth batter.

Heat about 5cm of oil in a pot on a medium heat.

Place the cake flour on a plate and roll the banana pieces to coat, then drop them into the batter, remove and allow the excess batter to drip off.

Place them in the hot oil and cook until golden brown and slightly puffed up.

remove and drain on paper kitchen towel.

Put 2 pieces per serving, dust with a mixture of caster sugar and cinnamon and serve with a dollop of ice cream.

Yummy

If you are a banana fan, here is a hot banana pudding recipe and a banana bread recipe

Sticky toffee sauce

Sticky toffee sauce

sticky toffee sauce

Sticky toffee sauce

I have so many great memories of sticky toffee pudding from the Dullstroom hotel to pubs and restaurants in England, so I went out to find a great recipe. It was easier than I thought and then made the pudding even easier with a bought sponge cake. This is excellent to deal with a sweet craving and the quickest hot dessert when you are at a loss and just don’t want to spend much time in the kitchen.

Your guests will never know if you use a bought sponge smothered in this fabulous sauce. They will ask for the recipe so be prepared.

What you need

100g butter
100ml brown sugar
100ml thick cream
100ml golden syrup

(If you like a lot of sauce, just use the principle of equal amounts of everything)

The process

Add all of the ingredients to a pot and heat until all of the sugar is dissolved and the sauce is golden and shiny.

Take the sponge cake, cut into pieces and pack into an oven dish, much like you would if you are making a bread and butter pudding.

Pour over the hot sauce and let it sit for about 5 minutes before serving so that the cake absorbs the sauce. Serve it with whipped cream, custard or just as it is.

Simple and a winner every time!

I have tried it with vanilla, chocolate and coffee sponge cakes before and it’s really good with any of them.

If you want to make something from scratch the easy malva pudding is simply fantastic.

Easy apricot crumble

Easy apricot crumble

fresh fruit

Apricot Crumble

This is a classic and very quick dessert that is very versatile. You can add a few strawberries or goosberries as well for a change and the crumble topping comes out with a nice crunch that is sweet and so very moreish.

What you need

15-20 fresh apricots
2-3 tablespoons castor sugar

180g soft butter (room temp)
1 teaspoon cinnamon
100g castor sugar
200g flour

The process

Halve and remove the seeds from the apricots, then place in an oven proof dish that has been lightly buttered, sprinkle over the 2 tablespoons castor sugar and bake at 180 Celsius for about 5 minutes to soften them up slightly while you make the crumble.

Add all of the crumble ingredients together and rub the butter in with your hands.

The crumble topping should be fairly course but not dry.

Cover the apricots with the crumble mixture and bake for a further 20-25 minutes until the crumble begins to brown.

Serve with ice cream or double thick cream.

There is an easy apple crumble recipe or perhaps you will like the Easy Apple Pie recipe

Sticky toffee pudding

Sticky toffee pudding

sticky toffee sauce

Sticky toffee pudding always reminds me of the old Dullstroom hotel which I spent many, many fantastic weekends visiting in the 80’s and 90’s. Hot gooey and unbelievably good, you just have to try this one.

What you need

Cake mixture

1 1/3 cup flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
100g treacle sugar
pinch of salt
1/2 cup milk
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
75ml melted butter

Toffee Sauce

120g soft butter
200g treacle sugar
250ml cream

The process

In a large bowl, sift the flour, add the sugar, salt and combine well.

In another bowl, add the milk, eggs, vanilla essence and melted butter. Whisk together until you get a slight froth on the top.

Add the liquid to the dry ingredients and mix well.

Pour into a buttered baking dish and bake at 180 Celsius for 40 minutes until the cake is firm to the touch.

The sauce

Add all of the ingredients to a pot and simmer for 5 minutes or so over a medium heat.

I prefer to pour sauce over the individual servings but you can also poke holes into the cake and pour it over the top as it comes out of the oven and let it soak in.

It’s very rich and should serve 6 people no problem.

Hot chocolate brownie dessert

Hot chocolate brownie dessert

chocolate brownies

Hot Chocolate Brownie Dessert

Hot chocolate brownies and cream anyone? This has got to be the ultimate winter feel good dessert. It’s hot, its gooey and it’s choclate….

What you need

100g butter
100g dark chocolate chopped
175g caster sugar
2 eggs beaten
80g flour
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
1/2 cup milk chocolate drops

The process

Lightly grease a small cake tin (20cm) or 8 ramekins and line the base with grease proof paper.

In a pot over a low heat melt the butter, add the dark chocolate and stir until completely melted and remove from the heat.

Add the caster sugar and stir, add the beaten eggs, sift in the flour and cocoa powder and stir to combine. You don’t want to mix it thoroughly.

Lastly, fold in the chocolate drops and pour into the tin or ramekins.

Bake in a 180 Celsius oven for about 20 minutes.

The tops should be quite firm but not hard. Let them cool slightly and then turn them out and serve with a good amount of thick jersey cream or ice cream.

Cinnamon almond baked apples

Cinnamon almond baked apples

baked apples

Baked apples are such a nice dessert to finish of any winter meal but these are really fantastic. The Almonds and the sugar are crunchy and sweet and the apple is soft and tart.

(more…)

Easy apple pie

Easy apple pie

apple pie recipe

Apple Pie

Hot apple pie with a big dollop of jersey cream says winter comfort food like little else. This is one you will make time and time again. Making apple pie is as therapeutic as it is delicious so set aside the time, get your mind right and the process of making apple pie will put a smile on your face long before you taste it.

What you need

Pastry

250g cake flour
pinch of salt
140g cold cubed butter
90ml water

Filling

4 Red or yellow apples
2 tablespoons butter
Brown sugar
Caster sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon

The process

Place the flour, salt and butter butter into a food processor and blend until it reaches a bredcrumb looking stage. Add the water and blend to a dough.

remove it from the processor and place in the fridge while you make the filling.

Slice the apples fairly thin and add to a pan with the butter, allow the butter to melt. Add brown sugar and caster sugar to taste, add the cinnamon and cook over a low heat until all of the sugar has dissolved. taste and sugar if needed. ensure that each piece of apple is nicely coated with the sweet syrupy mixture.

Remove from the heat.

Now get the pastry from the fridge, divide it in 2 and roll it out quite thin. Cover the bottom and sides of the dish with the 1 half of the pastry. Spoon in the apples evenly. You can pour a little of the sauce over the apples but not too much as it will leak out as it bakes.

Roll out the other half of the pastry, cover and cut off any excess pastry. Cut 4 slits into the top of the pie, brush with some well beaten egg and bake for 30 minutes at 200 Celsius or until the top is golden brown and the cinnamon smells are working on you.

Serve with thick cream.

Here is an apple crumble recipe that uses a bit os passion fruit. Try it.

Rice pudding

Rice pudding

rice-puddingThis is another of those special winter desserts. Drizzle with a little Maple syrup if you have, it makes all the difference. Hot Desserts are your best friend in winter and you are going to want to try this one and one of the others.

If you love the warm feeling as you open the oven and that just baked smell wafts out with a hint of almost burning sugar, you are an addict like me…. and you are going to love every one of these homey hot desserts.

Bread and butter pudding

Sago pudding

Malva Pudding

What you need

3 eggs
half cup sugar
3 cups milk
Nutmeg
2 teaspoons vanilla essence
2 cups cooked rice
2 cups seedless raisins

The Process

Beat together the eggs, sugar and vanilla essence until creamy then add the milk and beat well.

Add the raisins and gently combine into the mixture.

Place the cooked rice into the dish, or divide into equal p[ortions in rammikins, then pour the misture over the rice in a large buttered dish or into rammikins with small bits of butter scattered on top then sprinkle generously with nutmeg.

Place dish/rammikins into roasting pan with enough water to reach half way up the sides and bake at 150 Celsius for 45 – 60 minutes or until set.

Tip: Stir gently and occasionally during the first 20 minutes of baking.

Serve warm with a little cream.

If you enjoy this type of hot dessert recipe, you will love the Malva pudding recipe.

Hot lemon sponge pudding

Hot lemon sponge pudding

lemon sponge souffle

Lemon sponge dessert

Its a light warm lemon delight that is perfect to finish off your Sunday lunch.

What you need

60g soft butter
250g caster sugar
4 eggs separated
2 teaspoons finely grated lemon zest
50g self-raising flour
350ml milk
80ml lemon juice
Icing sugar
The process

In a large bowl, add the butter, half the sugar, all 4 egg yolks and the lemon zest. Mix well with an electric beater.

Add the flour, mix with a spoon, and the milk and mix well with a spoon until smooth.

Stir in the lemon juice(don’t worry if it looks like it’s seperating)

Whisk the egg whites to stiff peaks as if you were making meringues and whisk in the rest of the sugar until quite firm and glossy.

Fold the egg white mixture into the batter.

Pour into a baking dish with high sides, and put in a roasting pan with hot water to reach around a third of the height of the dish.

Bake at 180 clesius for 50-60 minutes or until it has risen well and is browned on top.

Sprinkle with a little caster sugar and serve hot with cream.