Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Chocolate Raspberry Tarts (LF)

Chocolate Raspberry Tarts are little morsels of awesomeness! Topped with epic vegan raspberry jelly and filled with dairy free chocolate mousse you just have to go back for one more. Substitute the sweet short crust pastry (base) with a vegan alternative such as the base from my Chocolate Mousse Cake Recipe to make this an amazing vegan dessert.

Chocolate Raspberry Tarts

For Base:
1 2/3 cup flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 cup sugar
10 tbsp dairy-free margarine
1 tsp vanilla
2 tsp water
2 egg yolks

For Filling:
350g silken tofu
350g vegan chocolate chips
1 tsp vanilla essence

For Raspberry Jelly:
1 cup raspberries
1/4 cup water
4 tbsp sugar
1 tsp agar agar powder


Turn on oven to bake at 180 degrees celcius

For Base:
Put flour, salt and sugar into a bowl.
Add margarine and rub until mixture is like breadcrumbs.
Add vanilla, water and egg yolks.
Mix together and knead into a soft smooth ball of dough.
Place in fridge for at least 15 minutes.
Roll out pastry to about 2-3mm thickness.
Cut circles out of the pastry to line the holes in a mini-muffin tray.
Bake blind for 8 minutes. Remove baking blind material and bake for 1 minute.
Remove from oven tray and set aside to cool.
Continue to bake pastry cups until pastry is used up.

For Filling:
Place tofu and vanilla essence into a blender or food processor.
Over a double boiler, melt chocolate.
Add melted chocolate to blender and quickly start whizzing the mixture until smooth.
Spoon into the cooled bases.

Place into fridge for at least 2 hours or until set.

For the Jelly:
Put raspberries and water into a small saucepan.
Mash the raspberries into the water with a fork.
Add the sugar and bring to the boil.
Add agar agar powder and simmer for 5 minutes. Remove from heat.
Place a non-stick silicon mat into a large flat bottomed tray (such as a swiss roll tin).
Pour raspberry jelly mixture onto mat and refrigerate overnight or until set.
Cut small shapes from the jelly and layer over the set chocolate tarts - I used a square cutter and two jelly layers to give the tarts some height.

Makes 48 bite-sized tarts.

Quick Tips:
- I don't have a double boiler so to melt the chocolate I use a glass or metal bowl on top of a saucepan of boiling water - just need to be careful of the steam, I often wear an oven glove on the hand holding the bowl.
 - You can also use a microwave to melt the chocolate by microwaving in stints of no more than 20 seconds at a time (often much less once heated through), stirring in between each stint.
 - Make sure you start whizzing the filling mixture as soon as the melted chocolate has been added because the chocolate will start cooling and solidifying as soon as you add it.


Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Vanilla Cupcakes (GF) (LF)

Vanilla cupcakes - yum! Classic sweetie goodness. Bonus with these ones is they're gluten free and lactose free yet still very soft, fluffy and delicious. I made a batch to celebrate a friend's birthday only to have to make another so I could blog them here.

Gluten Free Vanilla Cupcakes

130g margarine
130g caster sugar
125g rice flour
1tsp xantham gum
2 eggs
1tsp vanilla essence
2tsp baking powder

Preheat oven to 180 degrees celcius.
Cream margarine and sugar until fluffy and pale.
Mix flour with xantham gum and baking powder.
Fold half the flour and one egg in to the margarine/sugar mixture.
Fold remaining egg and flour into the mixture.
Fold in vanilla essence.
Line a cupcake tin with patty cases.
Fill cases 3/4 full and bake for 12-15 minutes.
Remove when golden or an inserted skewer comes out clean.
Cool the cupcakes on a wire rack.

For vanilla icing:
Cream 100g margarine with 100g icing sugar until light and fluffy.
Mix in 1tsp vanilla. (Add 50g sifted cocoa if chocolate icing required).
Spread over cooled cupcakes.


Just desserts here

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Genoise with Raspberries & Cream (LF)

Genoise filled with rasperries and cream is a delicious dessert. It's lactose-free and awesomely delicious. Genoise is just a fancy sponge so have a go, make one and try it for yourself!

Genoise with Raspberries & Cream

For the genoise:
40g margarine, melted
4 size 6 eggs
125g caster sugar
125g flour
1tsp vanilla essence
zest of 1 lemon
400g raspberries

For soy creme patissiere
450ml soy milk
55g caster sugar
55g cornflour
3 size 6 eggs


For the creme patissiere:
Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.
Pour into a saucepan and heat over a medium heat until thick.
Transfer to a bowl, cover with baking paper to prevent a skim forming then place in the fridge to cool.
Once cold, fold in 75g raspberries.

For genoise:
Preheat oven to 180 degrees celcius.
Gease a 20cm springform pan or 4 mini springform pans
In a heatproof bowl over a pot of boiling water, whick together eggs and sugar.
Keep whisking until mixture expand to 5 times in volume and the whisk leaves a trail when lifted.
Remove from the heat and whisk for another minute.
Fold in sifted flour, vanilla, lemon zest and melted margarine into mixture
Put mixture into cake tin(s).
Bake for 25 minutes until top is springy and light golden brown. A skewer should come out clean.
Leave cake to cool in tin for 5 minutes then turn out onto a wire rack.
When cake is cold, cut horizontally to give three layers of cake.
Place bottom layer on a serving plate; spread a layer of creme patissiere on top.
Repeat layering then decorate with fresh raspberries and a dusting of icing sugar.


Just desserts here

Friday, April 11, 2014

Strawberry Millefeuilles (LF)

Strawberry Millefeuilles is a rich and filling dessert despite its deceptive light and airy appearance. By making creme patissiere using soy milk and using cheap margarine based store bought flakey pastry this is a super treat for my lactose-intolerant partner that's really easy to make. The strawberries can be replaced with other fresh berries such as raspberries or blueberries and whipped cream can be used in place of creme patissiere for an impressive looking quick dessert.

Strawberry Millefeuilles


3 sheets flakey pastry
400g strawberries

For soy creme patissiere
450ml soy milk
55g caster sugar
55g cornflour
3 size 6 eggs

Preheat oven to 200 degrees celcius.
Place a sheet of flakey pastry on a lined baking tray.
Place a wire rack on top of the pastry.
Bake for 15-20 minutes until just brown.
Flip the sheet of pastry and bake for another 10 minutes until both sides are browned.
Remove from oven and transfer to a chopping board.
Repeat for the remaining 2 sheets of flakey pastry.

For the creme patissiere:
Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.
Pour into a saucepan and heat over a medium heat until thick.
Transfer to a bowl, cover with baking paper to prevent a skim forming then place int eh fridge to cool.

To assemble the Millefeuiles:
Spread half the creme patissiere over one sheet of flakey pastry.
Sprinkle with half the strawberries.
Repeat with another layer of pastry, creme patissiere then strawberries.
Place the last sheet of pastry on top and sprinkle with icing sugar.

Keep chilled for up to 6 hours before serving.


Just desserts here

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Bakewell Tart (LF)

Bakewell Tart is an english classic with a frangipane-like filling encased in buttery pastry. It's been a long time between desserts and when we were invited to a flat warming over the christmas holidays I just couldn't resist the urge to bake something. This is despite being in the middle of moving house with all my bakeware packed away in boxes!!! I ended up making one large tart for the masses as well as two smaller lactose free versions (pictured) for my partner. The following recipe can be made lactose free by substituting the butter for margarine.

Bakewell Tart


For the pastry:
2/3 cup flour
10 tbsp butter
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1 egg yolk
1/2 tsp vanilla essence
1 tbsp cold water

For the filling:
125g butter
125g caster sugar
3 eggs
1/2 tsp almond extract
125g ground almonds
150g raspberry jam
25g flaked almonds

Preheat oven to 180 degrees celcius.

For the pastry:
Put flour, salt,butter and sugar into a bowl.
Rub together until it resembles breadcrumbs.
Mix in egg yolk, vanilla essence and water.
Knead together to form a soft dough.
Wrap in pastic wrap and refrigerated for at least 15 minutes.
Roll out to about 3 mm thick and use to line a 20 cm loose bottom tart tin.
Bake blind for 15 minutes.
Remove baking blind material and bake for a further 2 minutes.

For the filling:
Cream butter and sugar.
Beat in eggs abd almond extract.
Fold in ground almonds. Should be a thick paste.

For the tart:
Spread jam over the base of the tart.
Spread filling over the top.
Top off with flaked almonds
Bake for 40 minutes or until golden.
Remove from oven and allow to cool.
Remove from tin and dust with icing sugar.

Serve with custard, cream and fresh fruit.


Just desserts here

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Raspberry Frangipane Tart (Possible LF)

Raspberry Frangipane Tart is sweet, tart and full of fruit. I made this one for a dinner party as the dessert after a delicious roast chicken; it went down well. I even made separate mini lactose-free ones for my partner - to do the same replace the butter with margarine and milk with soy milk and it tastes just as fantastic!

Raspberry Frangipane Tart


For the pastry:
125g sugar
155g butter
40mL milk
270g flour
1 tsp baking powder
1tsp salt

For the filling:
180g butter, softened
180g icing sugar
180g ground almonds
70g flour
1 size 6 egg

For the tart:
300g frozen raspberries, thawed
1/2 cup apricot jam

For the pastry:
Beat sugar and butter together until light and fluffy.
Add milk, flour, baking powder and salt and mix until combined.
Wrap in pastic wrap and refrigerated for at least 30 minutes.

For the filling:
Beat butter, icing sugar, almonds and flour until well combined.
Add the egg and mix until combined.
Set aside.
Gently simmer the apricot jam with 4 tablespoons of water for 5 minutes, remove from heat and set aside.

For the tart:
Preheat oven to 170 degrees celcius.
Roll out pastry to 4mm thick and line a 24 cm loose-bottom tart tin.
Spread filling into pastry.
Place raspberries evenly over the top of the filling.
Bake for 25 minutes or until golden.
Allow to cool before removing tart from its tin.
Glaze with apricot jam mixture.

Serve with vanilla ice cream and berries.


Just desserts here

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Chocolate Cherry Mousse Cake

Chocolate Cherry Mousse Cake is like a combination of forest gateaux and chocolate mousse. I think it works well and most of it was destroyed at the girl's night I made it for. It is a bit of effort to make but I loved the challenge and thoroughly enjoyed the result. 

Chocolate Cheery Mousse Cake


For Chocolate Genose Sponge:
75g flour, sifted
60g cocoa, sifted
4 size 6 eggs
125g castar sugar
30g melted butter

For Cherries:
400g of pitted cheeries, from a jar or tin.
150g castar sugar
Zest of 1 orange
2 cloves

For Chocolate Mousse:

500mL milk
125g castar sugar
1 vanilla pod, split and seeds scraped.
200g dark chocolate (at least 50% cocoa solids)
6 eggs yolks (size 6 eggs)


For the chocolate genose:
Preheat oven to 190 degrees celcius
Grease and line a 23cm springform cake tin

Whisk eggs and sugar together in a bowl for about 15 minutes or until the misture leaves trails when you lift the whisk.
Fold in flour and cocoa.
Add melted butter and fold into mixture until just combined.
Pour into prepared tin.
Bake for 30 minutes or until springy to the touch.
Remove from oven and invert onto a wire rack to cool.

For the cherries:
Put cheeries into a saucepan, cover with juice from the can/tin, add water if necessary to ensure the cherries are covered.
Add sugar, orange zest and cloves.
Over medium heat stir until sugar has dissolved.
Remove from heat and leave until required.

For the Chocolate Mousse:
Make a creme anglaise... slowly bringing to the boil, the milk, two-thirds of the sugar, vanilla seeds and the vanilla pod in a saucepan.
Whisk egg yolks and remaining sugar in bowl until pale and leaves a light trail when the whisk is lifted.
Whilst whisking, pour hot milk mixture into egg yolk mixture, then pour back into saucepan.
Cook over a low heat but do not allow it to boil or it may curdle.
Once it thickens and lightly coats the back of a spoon, remove from the heat.
Break up the chocolate and place ina bowl.
When the creme anglaise is 75 - 85 degrees celcius, pour onto the chocolate and stir with a wooden spoon.
Whisk until smooth.
Whip the cream in another bowl until a trail is left when the whisk is lifted out.
Fold the cream into the chocolate mixture until just combined.

To Assemble:
Drain the cherries, discarding the cloves and orange zest.
Pour syrup into a saucepan and bring to the boil then remove from the heat.
Split the chocolate genose sponge horizontally and soak the cut sides with hot syrup.
Place outer ring of the springform pan on a flat plate.
Place top half of sponge, cut side up int he ring.
Spread a layer of chocolate mousse over the sponge about 1.5cm thick.
Evenly scatter the cherries over the mousse - reserving a dozen for serving.
Place second sponge, cut side down, on top and lightly press down.
Spread a thin layer of mousse on top.
Place int he fridge to set for at least 4 hours, until ready to serve.

To Serve:
Soak a tea towel in hot water, wring out and wrap around the tin then slowly lift off the outer ring.
Scatter chocolate shavings over the top of the cake and around the sides.
Dip a sharp knife into hot water, quick wipe dry, and cut the mousse cake into 12. Cleaning and dipping the knife into hot water between each slice.
Serve with a cherry on top and a quinelle of cream or fresh fruit to cut through the rich chocolate goodness.

-Make sure the genose sponge is soaked as much as possible to give a moist and delicious result.
-Fresh cherries can be used too, just simmer them with the sugar, orange zest and cloves until they are soft.
-This can be made the day before serving and the leftovers kept in the fridge for the following day (ie lasts for 2 days).


Just desserts here