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Recipe: Strawberry Ricotta Cheesecake

It’s strawberry season, and this season is a particularly good one so I thought it was about time I shared this delectable recipe.  I created this recipe a number of years ago and it is still one of my favourite desserts. It is always a big hit in my cooking classes, and my students are amazed that not only is it gluten free but low fat!   This light and luscious cheesecake is not too sweet, and because it doesn’t have a biscuit base like many cheesecakes it is lesser in calories. You could use low-fat ricotta for an even lower fat option, and for a gluten free dessert make sure you use gluten-free cornflour.  If you’re serving a wine with it, a Late Harvest Riesling is a good match. Enjoy!


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Recipe: Chocolate Peanut Butter Torte

This dessert is my idea of decadence – a truly delicious dessert. Due to the ridiculously high fat and sugar content it’s not something I make on a regular basis, but because it’s Easter all bets are off with calorie counting and a few indulgent treats are on the menu.  Besides, anything is always better for you when it’s homemade….

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Recipe: Hazelnut Pavlova with Chocolate Hazelnut Cream & Summer Fruits

Instead of serving a traditional Christmas pudding this festive season, why not serve something more appropriate to our climate like this light and fruity and slightly decadent dessert? In this recipe, Australia’s national dessert gets a makeover, with the meringue flavoured with hazelnut meal and the Nutella added to the cream. The pavlova can be made the day before, leaving minimal last minute preparation. The perfect Christmas Day dessert!

Hazelnut Pavlova with Tropical Fruit

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Recipe: Rhubarb Upside-Down Cake

Rhubarb is currently in season in Australia, and whilst most people think rhubarb is a fruit it is actually a vegetable. Known for its tart, tangy and slightly sharp taste, rhubarb is a great filling for pies and crumbles, marries beautifully with cream and custards and also has its place in savoury dishes. I have wonderful childhood memories of my Mum’s delicious rhubarb crumble…

Rhubarb

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Recipe: Tropical Tarte Tatin

Tarte Tatin is an upside-down tart, made most commonly with apples, where the fruit is caramelised in sugar and butter prior to baking. Because I like to incorporate local and seasonal produce into my cooking, I came up with this version, where pineapple and passionfruit replace the traditional apple. It’s a tropical twist on an old favourite, and it’s really good!


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Recipe: Almond and Rosewater Filled Fresh Dates

After lunch or dinner it’s nice to have something small and sweet after dessert. Traditional petit fours are an option, but for something a little different, and possibly a tad healthier, these Moroccan-inspired morsels are a lovely way to end a meal. Not only do they look pretty, but they taste great too.  Perfect for your Christmas table.

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Recipe: Festive Tropical Trifle

Christmas Day in Queensland is generally a hot and steamy affair.  As much as I enjoy the traditional Christmas fayre of roast turkey and all the trimmings followed by steamed Christmas pudding, the thought of standing in a hot kitchen in the heat on Christmas Day does not jingle my bells! A cold spread is a much better way to go at this time of the year. And even better, a meal of which the majority can be prepared the day before, leaving you free to enjoy the fun and festivities of Christmas Day.

My Festive Tropical Trifle is the perfect warm weather Christmas Day dessert. The combination of panettone, coconut custard and mango makes this a really celebratory dish. If making this at other times of the year when pannettone is not so easily available, substitute madeira or sponge cake. You could replace the rum with extra pineapple juice to make it kid-friendly. To make a bigger trifle, just double the ingredients and use a large serving bowl. Enjoy!

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Recipe: Strawberry Clafoutis

As my regular readers would know, I am a big advocate of seasonal cooking. There are so many great reasons for using fruits and vegetables that are in season – they’re at their best, they’re inexpensive and because they don’t to travel great distances it’s better for the environment. Being late Spring, we are currently enjoying a beautiful selection of fruits, including mangoes, strawberries and pineapples. Continue Reading →

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Recipe: Chocolate Liqueur Mousse

An oldy but a goodie, chocolate mousse never goes out of style. It is a perfect dessert for a dinner party as it can be made fully in advance. This adult version has the addition of  liqueur, which of course could be left out but why would you? Any liqueur can be used – use your favourite or experiment for different results. My favourite – Cointreau.

Chocolate Liqueur Mousse

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