It’s too hot to eat isn’t it? And cooking is totally beyond me. It’s enough to open the fridge, grab a handful of tomatoes, an abandoned falafel and consider that that’s lunch done with. And so it nearly was this evening. I had a large box of cherries in the fridge and they’re the plump, sweet, juicy sort that really need no accompaniment, but then my eye lingered on the pot of cream and my brain wandered from there.
Anyway, just spend 2 minutes in the kitchen, I promise this is worth it. Crush 3 amaretti biscuits (the hard, crispy kind) into fine crumbs. Sprinkle about a third into a shallow heatproof bowl, then spoon over 150ml extra thick double cream, the sort you can spoon straight from the pot. Smooth the surface and sprinkle over the remaining biscuit crumbs followed by 2 teaspoons light brown sugar. Pop this under a hot grill until the sugar is bubbling and caramelised, just a minute or so. If you’ve got a blow torch gathering dust in your cupboard then this could be it’s moment. Serve with cherries to dunk.
Now I ate this all to myself, it was quite a generous portion as it’s quite rich, but it was the only thing I ate. This would scale up very easily and make a super easy dessert for any summer gathering. Thinking about it, it would be wonderful with strawberries or peaches too.
150ml extra thick double cream
3 amaretti biscuits
2 tsp light brown sugar
Serves 1, maybe 2 less hungry people.
Every year, my mum would ask me what I wanted to have for my birthday dinner, and every year my answer was the same: raspberry soufflé! This was no tricksy baked number, but a fruity, creamy cold set soufflé from one of my mum’s delightfully retro cookbooks. One of these days I’m going to send my mum up into the loft to seek out that old book as I want the recipe!!
Raspberries remain my favourite fruit and this mousse evokes all of the flavours of my favourite childhood dessert, although I dare say it’s even simpler to make. I made this a few weeks ago for a family supper, with the idea being that everyone could adorn their own mousse with heaps of mini meringues, marshmallows, fresh fruit and whipped cream to make their pudding as OTT as possible!
I used frozen raspberries as they’re more economical when you need a lot and since you’re just pulping them it doesn’t matter if they’re a bit soggy when defrosted. Start by popping 400g frozen raspberries into a pan with a splash of water and 2 tbsp caster sugar. Bring to a simmer then take off the heat and thoroughly mash or blitz the fruit into a thick pulp. I must say I considered sieving it at this point to get rid of some of the pips but I didn’t bother in the end, but if you’re not a fan of pips you might prefer to.
Return to the heat and bring to a simmer. Stir in 225g mini marshmallows – they need to be the mini ones to melt properly. Take off the heat and allow to melt, stirring from time to time. Leave aside to cool. Meanwhile, whip 300ml double cream until thick, soft peaks have formed. Fold into the cooled raspberry mixture and then spoon into bowls or glasses for serving. This now needs to set for a few hours in the fridge.
I served mine with pink candy stripe meringues, more fruit, cream and more mini marshmallows. Some shortbread would probably also be nice. This made 6 decent sized portions, although if you have very hungry guests it might just do 4. I could easily have eaten 2 or 3.
400g frozen raspberries
2tbsp caster sugar
225g mini marshmallows
300ml double cream
Serves 6. Takes about half an hour of prep plus a couple of hours to set. No special equipment needed except a whisk.