I hope you all spent a fabulous Easter with your family, ate delicious roasted lamb, drank some fruity wine and indulged in things you gave up for Lent. Our Easter felt a bit more like Christmas, waking up to at least 15cm of fresh snow each morning. Great for everyone who can ski – spring skiing is the best. Not so fun for people like moi who are one-armed and banned from all winter sports. I did make good use of my ski pass though and soaked up some sun on the top of mountains. Wonderful.
Need an idea of what to do with some left over chocolate bunnies? How about trying this classic, adapted from an Italian chef – Gennaro Contaldo. It’s one of the last desserts I made for my father and to my (and his) surprise he declared it better than his beloved Stalden chocolate crème (a Nestlé dessert classic for the true Swiss). Now, my friends, trust me when I say that is a compliment. See for yourself.
Chocolate Amaretto Pudding
After the success of my previous citrus and berries dessert I couldn’t get enough of the curd – I had a craving which I needed to satisfy. Almost as though I were pregnant… HAHA… definitely not the case. Anyways…. I have also never made a pavlova. What a great excuse to make both – pavlova topped with lemon curd. Sounds like pure perfection to moi.
This is actually the first time ever that I have attempted to make meringue. I was determined to make it early on during the day so if it failed I still had enough time to quickly pop to the shops and buy replacements…… sadly sunshine and birthday bubblies kidnapped any sense of time I had and suddenly dinner was only 2 hours away. And no meringues to be seen. AAAHHHHHH. I took a deep breath, one last sip of bubblies, found this extremely helpful guide guide and switched into my Emergency Room efficiency mode. My meringues were saved.
Mini Pavlova with Lemon Curd and Berries
One thing I missed extremely during my time in London was the winterly weekend getaways to the snowy Swiss alps I am used to from my childhood. Finally I have them back!! Since the season started I have spent every free day in the snow. The fresh mountain air and the relaxed ambiance are irreplaceable. There is no better way to finish off a long day on the slopes than with a piece of fresh cake and a cup of hot chocolate (with the obligatory generous splash of some sort of Alcohol, Amaretto in my case) – pure bliss. Here is a lemony classic I personally love – even if you think you are drowning the cake in lemon, use all of the lemon sirup to drizzle!
Lemon Drizzle Cake
Have you heard of orthorexia nervosa? For those who haven’t – it is defined as an eating/mental disorder characterised by preoccupation with avoiding food perceived to be unhealthy. Over the past few years our society has formed a slight obsession with healthy eating, counting calories and various dietary inventions, which all seem to be labelled as”the best/healthiest”. To name a few: Atkins diet, vegetarian (being the most harmless), pescetarian, vegan, raw-food-diet and saving the best for last – fruitarianism (these people literally only eat what naturally falls from a plant). What happened to simply enjoying food? I am fully aware that eating meat on a daily basis isn’t at all sustainable and shouldn’t be done. However, I could never give up any type of food, especially not animal derived products. But, being a foodie, from time to time I take an interest in these bizarre diets. A non-vegan friend of mine recently had an interest in trying to make a vegan dessert – she chose vegan banana ice-cream. Imagine succeeding in making super healthy and ultimately tasty ice cream without animal fat?? Sadly, it was a bad introduction to veganism. Some things are just not meant to be recreated without animal products. What is ice cream without cream (and no – coconut milk/cream does not count as a substitute when taking the penetrating, lingering, out of place coconut flavour into account!)?? Well, basically frozen mashed fruit, so frozen baby food. YUMMY. NOT. I mean, it was actually quite tasty, I love mashed banana, but seriously, how is this ice cream?
After this experience, in an attempt to make a non-vegan healthier version of ice-cream, I decided to try making frozen yoghurt. Bought frozen yoghurt is definitely just as satisfying as full on italian gelato (unlike vegan frozen mashed fruit) and healthier. So I figured home made fro-yo was worth the try. It was – not quite as creamy (sadly, I don’t have an ice-cream maker so creaminess is hard to achieve) as bought fro-yo, but definitely delicious and enjoyable. Still not ice-cream, but a much better alternative to the failed vegan attempt.
Strawberry Frozen Yoghurt