Archive for the 'Dessert' Category

Fabulously chocolatey gooey pavlova with raspberries and whipped cream – if you don’t try this you are a fool!!

February 15, 2011

Honestly I mean it. You would have to be slightly mental not to absolutely love this Pavlova. Many many years ago one of my friends handed me a tatty photocopy of a Nigella Lawson Chocolate Pavlova recipe and made me promise that I would make it. She assured me that I would not be disappointed. And was spot on. I have no idea where the original recipe is now but this makey-uppy version is now one of my “old faithfuls”. Meringue is honestly not difficult to make. The best thing about it is even if it cracks and looks like an absolute disaster it still tastes and looks amazing as soon as you cover it with whipped cream and fruit. Perfect!

Ingredients serves (8 – 10)

6 egg whites (large eggs ideally free range organic)
400 grams caster sugar
teaspoon of white wine vinegar
2 tbsp of best quality cocoa powder (I used Green and Blacks)
100 grams best quality dark chocolate finely chopped (I used Green and Blacks 70%)
2 teaspoons of corn flour
600 mls double cream
2 punnets of fresh raspberries

Method

Pre-heat oven to 180 degrees

Take a large mixing bowl and wash it thoroughly with hot soapy water to ensure there is absolutely no oil in it. Meringue hates oil!!

Separate the eggs and add only the white to the bowl – do not get ANY yolk in the egg white this will affect the whites from whisking properly.

If you do get some yolk or egg-shell in your whites use one of the halved egg shells to remove it rather than a spoon – sounds daft but it makes getting the shell/yolk out much easier.

Weigh out your caster sugar.

Whisk whites until stiff peaks form – I used an electric whisk – you can use a manual whisk but prepare for arm burning.

Slowly add sugar a couple of table spoons at a time and whisk. Keep doing this until all the sugar is combined and mixture is shiny and thick.

Add tsp of white wine vinegar, 2 tbsp of cocoa powder, finely chopped chocolate and 2 tsp of corn flour and gently fold through until combined.

Dollop mixture onto a baking sheet lined with grease proof paper, spread out into a round or oval (consider what you are serving the pav on and try to make the shape suit the serving dish). Remember the meringue will spread out a little bit so make it smaller than the serving dish.

Pop it in the oven and immediately reduce the temp to 140 degrees (fan forced).

Bake for 45 mins and then allow to cool in the oven. The centre should still be squidgy a little like a baked chocolate mousse.

Once cool remove from oven and pop onto serving dish flipping the meringue over so that the bottom side is up.

Whisk cream until soft peaks form and spread over the Pavlova, cover the top with raspberries and voila – joy on a plate!

You can grate a little chocolate over the top too or dust with icing sugar if you are feeling “creative”, I have also made these as individual small meringues which is great for a party – they do not need as much time in the oven – about 20 mins.

Just to say again – you have to try this recipe!!!!!

Advertisements

Lemon meringue pie – and oldie but a goodie!! This ones for you bro.

January 11, 2011

My brother-in-law is a little bit of a sweet tooth, actually he is a lot of a sweet tooth. His absolute favourite dessert is Lemon meringue pie (LMP as I prefer to call it). He loves it so much that I think he could turn violent if someone threatens to take a piece of “his” pie. It was his birthday last week so I decided to make his day by tackling the LMP. I have made plenty of lemon tarts and brulees and tons of meringues but never actually combined them to make an LMP (shock horror!) With a little bit of pre-pie research I decided to “wing it” and make it up as I went along. My research uncovered an excessive use of lemon curd for the filling – what’s that all about! I do love lemon curd but how much better is a lemon tart? This dessert does have a rather high “faff” factor but it is well worth it.

Ingredients

Pastry: See “Ginger and rhubarb brulee tart” for ingredients and method

Lemon filling:

4 lemons
350 mls cream
6 whole free range eggs
120 grams caster sugar

Meringue:

4 egg whites
280 grams caster sugar
1 teaspoon of white wine vinegar

First things first follow the recipe from the “Ginger creme brulee tart” pastry case (only), bake it blind as per the recipe ensuring that there are no gaps in the pastry (if there are holes or gaps the filling will pour through and it will make a right mess of your oven).

While the pastry case is baking blind you can get the lemon filling prepared. Zest and juice 4 lemons and pop in a non reactive pan with the 120 grams of sugar. Warm through until sugar has dissolved then remove from heat. Heat the cream but do not boil.

Whisk the 6 eggs together until combined (not fluffy) in a large bowl.

Strain the lemon mix through a sieve into the eggs and whisk making sure to squeeze all the liquid out of the pulp/zest. Then add the cream and whisk through.

Drop the oven temp to 140 degrees Celsius once the pastry case has been removed.

Place pastry case (in loose bottom tin) onto a baking sheet and then fill with the lemon mix. Place in the oven and bake for 25 – 30 mins until set but not firm.

Once the lemon filling has set remove it from the oven – remember it will continue to cook in it’s own heat AND it is going back into the oven with the meringue on top so a little wobbly is good.

It is now time to whisk up the egg whites for the meringue. Make sure your bowl is spotlessly clean. It there is a scrap of oil the whites will not whisk properly.

Separate the eggs ensuring that you do not get any of the yolks in the bowl. Use an electric whisk (you can use a hand whisk but prepare to have a burning arm!). Whisk until soft peaks form then slowly add the 280 grams of caster sugar. The meringue mix should be shiny and thick. Once all the sugar has been whisked in fold in the teaspoon of vinegar.

You are now ready to pop this on top of the lemon tart. You don’t need to be delicate here – just get it on with a spatula. You can swoosh it around a bit to make some peaks which will crisp up when cooked.

Pop it in the oven and drop the temp down to 120 degrees.

Cook for a further 20 mins or so until the meringue is firm but not hard.

Let the pie cool in the oven with the door slightly a jar this will stop the meringue cracking up too much.

Voila you now have a delicious tooth rotter of a dessert – a good old LMP!!! It is great warm and cold and will last for a few days in the fridge (if Euan doesn’t eat it all in one go that is!)

Note: if you are feeling lazy you can use shop bought short crust pastry. I wouldn’t use the sweetened one as they are always too sweet and try to use an all butter one if you can.

Peach and amaretto frangipani tart

August 30, 2010

Slice of peach amaretto and frangipani tart

When I made the last batch of dribble-fest creme brulee tarts I made a spare tart shell baked it blind and then froze it (this works really well surprisingly!!). Anyway I decided to use it the other night and had brought some sweet ripe peaches so decided to make a frangipani tart. I checked out a few recipe books to get a frangipani recipe and James Martin had a pretty easy one to follow so gave that a bash adding some amaretto to jazz it up a bit and ended up with a fab dessert. My friend Renee makes a cracker of a raspberry frangipani tart, she is one of those people who whips up a bit of delicious baking without any fuss or mess. Actually I must pester her for her cream scone recipe……

Ingredients

Filling

3 medium sized ripe peaches or nectarines

4 eggs
225 grams caster sugar
225 grams butter
175 grams ground almonds
50 grams plain flour

50 grams of pinenuts

1 tart shell baked blind (for recipe see creme brulee tart recipe)

Method

Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius.
Cream butter and sugar

Cream butter and sugar until well combined.

Almond meal and plain flour

Measure out the flour and almond meal and combine.

Creamed butter and sugar

Add egg and flour mix

Add one egg at a time to the butter and sugar beating in with some of the almond meal and flour mix. Keep adding until all flour and all eggs are combined.

Add approx 3 – 4 tablespoons of amaretto and mix through.

Slices of peach layered in tart shell

Slice peach and layer over the bottom of the tart shell.

Peach frangipani tart

Fill tart with frangipani batter.

I placed a few slices of peach on top for decoration.

Bake in oven for 20 mins then sprinkle pinenuts over the top and continue to bake for another 15 mins.

Peach frangipani tart

Check to see if the filling is cooked through by inserting a skewer or knife. The skewer or knife should come out relatively clean, not totally clean though.

You may need to bake the tart for a little longer – just keep checking it. It will also cook a little when it comes out of the oven too remember.

Once cooked leave to cool a little before eating – lovely warm or cold and will last a few days. Serve with whipped cream, clotted cream or vanilla ice-cream.

Fab!!!

My version of the Bourke Street Bakery ginger creme brulee tart – with rhubarb

July 6, 2010

Rhubarb and ginger creme brulee tart

Just even thinking about this dessert is making my mouth water. The first time I had the “original” creme brulee tart was about 6 or 7 years ago. One of my friends brought a box of pastries over when I was cooking dinner for a chick night. I completely forgot about them until after everyone left. I opened the box to find 5 gorgeous tarts, a brulee tart, a chocolate one, lemon and I think there were a couple of fruit and almond ones too.

Even though I was full to the point of bursting I couldn’t resist tasting them. About ten minutes later I had eaten 3 of them!

Oopps!!

The creme de la creme was the ginger and pistachio creme brulee tart (pardon the pun).

From that day onwards I have been addicted to them. The pastry is very light, crisp and flaky and the filling is lushiously smooth and creamy with a crunchy layer of thin toffee in the top. Dribble!!!

Recently I google searched “Bourke Street Bakery Brulee Tart” and managed to find a recipe on someone’s blog.

SCORE!!!!!

I have made it twice now with great success. I made individual small tarts the first time and one large tart the second time.

The pasty first time was better as I followed the instructions to the letter – second time I rushed it a wee bit and also had an oven malfunction mid way through baking the pastry blind.

Never the less both worked well and were absolutely delicious.

I am going to give you the recipe for the single larger tart which will serve about 8 – 10 portions depending on how greedy you are…..

Ingredients:

Pastry

330 grams of plain flour
200 grams of unsalted butter
50 grams of unrefined caster sugar
pinch of salt
1/2 tablespoon of white vinegar
80 mls of icy cold water

Filling – Custard

700 mls double cream (make sure it is pure cream not thickened creme)
10 egg yolks (ideally organic free range)
80 grams of caster sugar
1 vanilla bean
Fresh ginger (1 medium to large root which is approx 1/2 fist size)

Filling – rhubarb

1 bunch of rhubarb
3/4 cup unrefined caster sugar

Brulee

Icing sugar
Blow torch (this is kind of essential)

I recommend you make the pastry the day before and leave it chilling in the fridge over night wrapped in cling wrap.

Pastry – method

Remove butter from fridge 20 mins before you need to use it – if you are in very hot weather (Oz in summer) do this 5 – 10 mins before you need it.

Mix the icy cold water with the sugar and the vinegar (ideally chill down the vinegar in the fridge) I added a little less water and an ice cube to make sure that the mix was VERY cold. Stir well to combine and leave for 10 mins.

Sift flour and salt into a large mixing bowl. Chop the butter into 1 cm cubes and add to flour mix. Very gently rub the butter into the flour. You do not want the usual bread crumb look, it should be chunkier than that so do not over mix/rub the butter in. You should still be able to see the butter pieces. Once you have the mix to this stage turn out onto a clean work top (ideally stone or marble as it is colder).

Stir the sugar, water, vinegar mix to make sure it is well combined and sprinkle over the top of the flour mix. Not it is important to work quickly here and also it is VERY important not to over work the pastry.

Take the heel of your hand and smear the pastry mix across the bench. Gather and do this again. You should only need to do this a couple of times and then press the pastry together into a ball.

Flatten to a disc and wrap in cling wrap and leave in fridge over night (if you are not able to make the pastry the day before you can do it on the day but make sure you leave it to rest in the fridge for at least 2 hours).

Bring pastry disc out of the fridge 20 mins before you wish to roll it out. Lightly sprinkle the bench top with flour (not too much). Gentle roll out to a large disc about 3 – 4 mm thick. Place pastry on a grease proof paper lined baking sheet and wrap in cling wrap and place in fridge again for another 2 hours.

This is REALLY important and will ensure that your pastry does not shrink too much and that it is crisp.

After 2 hours take a 24 cm loose bottom flan tin and grease with softened butter, I use a non stick one and grease it too just in case.

Remove the pastry from the fridge and line the flan tin. Press the pasty into the tin and push the pastry down the sides – this will also reduce the likelihood of the pastry shrinking.

Cut the pastry slightly about the top of the flan tin and pinch the edge to finish.

Wrap in cling wrap and place in the freezer for 20 – 30 mins.

Preheat the oven to 200 degrees celcius.

Remove the flan tin from the freezer, line with grease proof paper and fill with pastry weights. (I use rice however I have just watched a cooking show where they use coins – this helps cook the pastry case from below and above which I think is an excellent idea – will try that next time.)

Bake in oven for 20 mins or until golden and crispy.

Remove greaseproof paper and cook for another 5 mins.

Remove from the oven and cook.

Custard – method

Put cream, washed/scrubbed and sliced ginger and vanilla pod and seeds into a heavy based pot. To remove the seeds from the vanilla pod flatten it as much as you can then cut it down the middle (like filleting a fish) and scrap the seeds out with the back of a knife. Scrap seeds into pot and add the pods too.

Bring cream to the boil and then remove from the heat and rest for 10 mins.

Separate eggs and put egg yolks in a large metal bowl, add sugar and whisk to combine.

Take a medium sized pot and 1/3 fill with boiling water, bring back to a simmer.

Pour the cream mix through a sieve and into the egg/sugar mix whisk to combine. Put metal bowl on top of the simmering water making sure that the water does not touch the base of the bowl.

Whisk continuously until the custard thickens. Every couple of minutes make sure you take a spatula and scrap the sides down into the mix to ensure you do not get “scrambled” egg at the sides of the bowl.

The custard should get really quite thick and will take 10 – 15 mins approx to get to this stage (about as thick as salad cream)

Once the custard is at this stage remove from the heat making sure you do not scald yourself with steam.

Whisk ever 5 minutes until the custard has cooled.

Decant into a bowl and cover with cling wrap. Make sure the cling wrap is laying directly on top of the custard mix to prevent a skin forming.

Leave in fridge over night ideally or 4 hours if making it the same day. You can put it in the freezer for an hour to speed things along but make sure you stir it and replace the cling wrap after you then put it in the fridge.

Rhubarb – filling

Wash and finely slice rhubarb and add to a heavy based pan with the sugar. Bring to the boil then reduce to a simmer until rhubarb is fully cooked and collapsed – this should take 10 – 15 mins. Leave to cool slightly then strain through a sieve. Remove as much of the syrupy liquid from the rhubarb as you can but make sure you keep this as for a pouring sauce.

Once the pastry case has been baked and is ready, the custard is made and has been in the fridge for at least 4 hours (ideally over night), the rhubarb is strained and cooled you can assemble your tart.

Spread the rhubarb puree evenly over the base of the tart then fill the tart with the custard and use a spatula or palate knife to spread evenly over the top and right to the edge. Ideally you want it to be flush to the top of the pastry edge even slightly covering the edge. This is to prevent the pastry burning when you brulee the top of the tart.

Use a small sieve and liberally dust the top of the tart with icing sugar.

Brulee the top of the tart with a blow torch.

Put the tart back in the fridge for another couple of hours to set again – the custard will liquify a little from the heat of the blow torch.

Once chilled serve in slices with the rhubarb syrup poured over the top.

Yummy yummy yummy….

It does seem like a right palaver but it is DEFINITELY worth it.

You do not have to add the ginger if you do not like ginger and you can use different fruit if you do not have rhubarb e.g. Plum, quince, pear, apple, peach, strawberries other berries. If you are using berries you do not really need to cook them you can just blend them with some icing sugar then strain through a sieve. You may need to do this a coupe of times, first to remove excess seeds then secondly to remove water (maybe through a bit of kitchen paper).

Delicate and delicious strawberry pavlova (meringue is not difficult – I promise)

June 8, 2010

Stawberry pavlova

Meringue seems to send shivers up the spine of people who have not made it before. My brother-in-law LOVES meringue and keeps asking me to teach him how to make it. So here goes. All you need to remember is to be patient!! I usually wing it with my meringue recipes – approx 80 grms of sugar to each egg white a wee bit of vinegar and that’s it. However I was consulting my trusty “Cook’s Companion” cook book and Stephanie puts corn flour in hers so I thought why not give it a bash. AND just to let you know I will never look back!

Ingredients:

4 egg whites (large eggs)
240 grams caster sugar (I prefer to use the golden caster sugar rather than the white one)
2 teaspoons of cornflour
Vanilla extract
1 teaspoon of white vinegar

Approx 750 grms of beautiful strawberries (or other berries)
Caster sugar
Liqueur (I used Cointreau)

500 mls double cream

Preheat oven to 180 degrees.

First things first get a large ceramic or Pyrex bowl – no matter if you think it is clean wash it again with lots of hot soapy water. It is essential that there is no hint of oil in the bowl or on the whisk as it will stop the egg whites from whisking properly.

Separate the eggs and add the egg whites to the bowl (making sure there is absolutely no egg yolk). Whisk the egg whites until they form soft peaks, add in the sugar table-spoon at a time and whisk. The egg whites should become shiny and the silky looking. Add a teaspoon of white vinegar, two teaspoons of cornflour and a splash of vanilla extract (about 1 teaspoon) and fold through the whisked egg.

Put some baking paper onto a baking sheet and dollop the meringue onto the baking paper making a rough circle approx 20 cm diameter. Try to ensure that it is quite even.

Pop it straight into the oven and reduce the heat to 150 degrees Celsius. Cook for 30 mins. Reduce heat to 120 degrees and cook for another 45 mins.

(if you have a fan assisted oven reduce the temps by about 5 degrees each time)

Cool in the oven. This is really important as it reduces the likely hood of the meringue cracking (it will still crack a bit but not too badly).

While this is all happening finely slice the strawberries and put in a glass or ceramic bowl. Add a tablespoon of caster sugar and a slash of liqueur of your choice. Pop in the fridge to macerate.

Whisk double cream with a dessert spoon of caster sugar and a 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extra – whisk to soft peaks. Do not over whisk.

Once meringue is cool place upside down on a serving plate (so that you have a nice even base) dollop the cream over the top then spoon over the strawberries.

Strawberry pavlova

Serve immediately (6 large portions or 8 “normal” portions)

Lazy raspberry and strawberry cheese cake (without the cheese)

June 3, 2010

Lazy berry cheesecake

I love cheese cake but there really does seem to be a lot of mucking around for something creamy with a bit of crumbly biscuit. Soooo I decided to make my own version the easy way with no baking, chilling and waiting. The eat straight away version!!

Ingredients: (serves 4)

Digestive biscuits
Butter
Double cream (400 ml)
1 punnet of fresh raspberries 200 grams (or some thawed frozen ones)
1 small punnet of really good strawberries (if you can’t find good ones just add more rasps)
Caster sugar
White chocolate (ideally Green and Blacks)
Flaked almonds (approx 100 grams)

Finely slice strawberries and leave to macerate in a bowl with a dessert spoon of caster sugar mixed through.

Crush approx 10 digestive biscuits. Melt 50 grams of butter and add the digestive biscuits. Stir until biscuits are coated. Leave to cool.

Toast the flaked almonds in a frying pan ensuring they do not burn (they burn easily so do not take your eye off them). Leave to cool.

Grate 100 grams of white chocolate.

Whisk cream with 1 dessert spoon of caster sugar until the cream forms soft peaks. Do not over whisk. Fold through raspberries (do not add any of the juice if there is any) and also fold through a 1/3 of the strawberries.

Find some nice sundae glasses or similar and layer up the ingredients as follows.

Layer of biscuit crumb (approx table-spoon), sprinkle of toasted almonds, teaspoon of grated chocolate, 2 tablespoons of cream and fruit mix, table-spoon of strawberries. Then layer again and top with cream mix and some flaked almonds.

I would recommend that these are made layered just before you serve so that the biscuit and almonds stay crunchy.

I topped mine with grated white chocolate…..not a good idea as it looked like Parmesan (tasted good though). Tee hee.

Tiramisu Jamie style with a few tweaks

May 12, 2010

Tiramisu

My sis, her hubby and a few mates rented a lovely wee house in the middle of nowhere for New Year. It was really rather snowy and was touch and go there for a while whether or not they were actually going to make it. On there first night Euan woke up in the wee hours of the morning to a faint hissing noise and knew immediately that there was a “problem”.

The pipes had burst and there was water pouring everywhere – yes it was that cold!

Euan (who happens to be a plumber) came to the rescue and with a torch and a shovel managed to dig his way through the snow and ice to the decking where the water shut off valve was.

Well done Euan. The next day he wove his magic and repaired the pipes.

Anyway the whole point in this story is that due to the water dramas the owners offered the crew a free weekend, how lovely.

The free weekend was last weekend and I was invited.

What an excellent excuse to cook. There were a few likes and dislikes to attend to so we settled for a simple Italian menu.

Tomato and basil Bruschetta

Mushroom and Asparagus Risotto
Watercress, Rocket, Fennel and Apple Salad

Tiramisu

I have only made Tiramisu once before and that was for my 30th and was for 80 people….what a laugh.

My sister and I had watched Jamie Oliver’s “Venice” show during the week where he made Tiramisu so this recipe is inspired by Jamie.

Ingredients

1 1/2 x packets Savoiardi biscuits (sponge fingers)
500 grams Mascarpone
6 free range eggs
Approx 5 – 6 table spoons caster sugar
150 ml double cream (make sure it is not thickened cream)
Pinch of salt
Madeira wine (Pedro Ximenez sherry would also be nice)
1 cup of strong coffee (ideally freshly ground)
300 grams of good quality dark chocolate 70% cocoa solid (I like to use Green and Blacks but Lindt will do)

Finely chop 200 grams of dark chocolate, gently warm cream in a small pot – when hot but not boiling take off the heat and stir in chocolate. The chocolate should melt and create a beautiful smooth chocolate sauce. Leave off the heat to cool.

Separate eggs, yokes into one mixing bowl and whites into another. It is VERY important to make sure that the bowl for the whites is spotlessly clean – if the bowl has a hint of oil the whites will not whisk.

Egg yolks whisked with caster sugar

Add sugar slowly to egg yolks while whisking, whisk until pale yellow and creamy – this should take about 5 – 8 mins. I have said 5 – 6 table spoons of sugar because it really depends on how sweet you want this dessert to be. I like it to be sweet but not sickly. Taste as you go, you can always add more sugar but you can’t take it away. Remember the biscuits, chocolate and Madeira are all quite sweet.

In a separate bowl beat the Mascarpone with a wooden spoon until it is smooth, add in the egg yolk mix and gently stir through.

Whisking egg whites with pinch of salt

Add pinch of salt to egg whites and whisk until forms stiff peaks. Stir egg whites through egg yolk and Mascarpone mix. Taste for sweetness.

Egg yolk and Mascarpone mix being added to egg whites

Choose a low dish ideally glass but not essential, layer 1/2 the biscuits on the base. Sprinkle the 1/2 the coffee over this layer followed by a healthy slosh of the Madeira wine. Once the chocolate sauce is cooled (can be warm but not hot) pour 1/2 over the biscuits. Top with the Mascarpone/egg mix then follow with another layer.

Layering sponge fingers

Dollop the creamy Mascarpone mix on the top and then shave chocolate all over the top.

Dolloping the Mascarpone mix as a topping

Pop in the fridge and leave overnight for best results.

Eat in large quantities and try not to feel sick (like I did).

Tip: I honestly recommend that you do leave it in the fridge overnight – I know it is tempting to eat it straight away but it is so much better when it has been left for the biscuits to soften and the flavours to develop.

Raspberry shortcake

May 10, 2010

Raspberry shortcake

My sister and I popped into Sainsburys on Friday night to pick up bits and bobs to make pizza. On our way out they were giving out little strawberry shortcakes to promote strawberries which are in season. Never ones to say no to free food Fiona and I dug in. They had used a packet shortbread (Deans to be precise) some thick custard (Fiona thinks it was cream…) and a slice of strawberry. To our surprise it was really rather good.

So when we were working out what to make for Sunday lunch dessert I suggested we make our own strawberry shortcake. We went to the supermarket and there were no bloody strawberries!!!

Sods law!! Anyway after some debate about whether or not to “just buy a packet frozen lemon tart” (please NOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!) or not I managed to convince my sis that we could do the shortcake with raspberries instead.

Anywho neither of us had made shortbread before so we consulted Fiona’s selection of fabulous cook books and Sue Lawrence (excellent Scottish cook) came up trumps with a relatively simple recipe.

Fiona made the dough on Sunday morning before I had even woken up and pre running the Edinburgh 10 km race (well done Fee).

After we had cooked the shortbread we were sure we had stuffed it up but miraculously it turned out perfectly and tasted absolutely amazing!!

Here is the recipe (care of the lovely and talented Sue Lawrence)

For the shortbread:
225g /8oz butter (slightly salted), softened
110g/4oz caster sugar (golden caster if possible)
225g/8oz plain flour, sifted
150g/5oz cornflour, sifted

Method

1. Make the shortbread: Place the butter and sugar in a mixer or food processor and cream until pale.
2. Once well amalgamated, add the flour and cornflour and blend briefly, just until thoroughly combined. Tip into a buttered Swiss-roll tin (23x33cm/9×13″) and, using floured hands, press down so it is level all over.
3. Prick all over (do this carefully, so that you do not disturb the level surface) then bake at 150C/300F/Gas 2 for 50-60 minutes. What you are looking for is a uniform pale golden all over. Do not allow it to become golden brown.
4. Remove and dredge all over with caster sugar then cut into squares. Leave for 5 minutes or so then carefully decant onto a wire rack to cool.

******BTW we didn’t have any cornflour so we just added in a bit more plain flour AND ours was a wee bit browner than the recommended “pale golden” but still tasted fab AND we didn’t put any additional sugar on it – it really doesn’t need it as it’s super rich anyway.

Also when it comes out of the oven you will think that you’ve done something wrong as it is soft “and shortbread is supposed to be firm!!” but don’t worry it will be ok once it cools.

Anyway back to the recipe:

1 punnet of raspberries
approx 200 ml tub of double cream (not the thickened cream)
Vanilla extract
1 teaspoon caster sugar
Icing sugar for decoration

Add a few drops of vanilla extract and 1 teaspoon of caster sugar to the cream. Whip cream until it forms soft peaks.

I cut the shortbread into approx 4-5 cm squares and put one on the base, a dollop of cream and a handful of raspberries on top then I placed another square on top. Then dusted it with a little icing sugar.

Super easy, rather impressive and will definitely cook this again!!!

The good things about this is you can cook the shortbread in advance and have it in an airtight tin ready to use when needed.