Category Archives: sweet things

vanilla beach icecream

Spot the difference – one is a sandy beach on Fuerteventura in the Canary Islands…


The other is the contents of a vanilla pod floating atop of a pan full of double cream and milk…


Vanilla Icecream (from Gordon Ramsay’s Just Desserts – makes just over half a litre of incredibly rich icecream)

250ml whole milk
250ml double cream
50g caster sugar
1-2 vanilla pods
6 large free-range egg yolks

1) Put a bowl in the fridge to chill at least a few hours before making this recipe. Also, if you are using an icecream maker, make sure it has been in the freezer for at least 8 hours, preferably overnight.

2) Put the milk and cream in a heavy-based saucepan with 1 tablespoon of the sugar. Split open the vanilla pod(s) and scrape the seeds into the mixture. Add the empty pod(s) too.  Slowly bring to the boil.

3) Meanwhile, beat the egg yolks and sugar together with a balloon whisk until pale and creamy.

4) When the vanilla cream mixture is about to boil, take off the heat and pour about a third into the eggs, whisking well. Then pour the rest in slowly, whisking continuously.

5) Return the mixture to the pan and cook on low, stirring continuously until you are able to coat the back of your wooden spoon with the mixture. Careful not to overcook it.

6) Remove from the heat and strain through a sieve into the chilled bowl. Place in the fridge to chill and stir occasionally to make sure no skin forms on the top.

7) Then pour into a shallow container and freeze. Take it out and beat thorougly at least three times during the freezing process. If you have an icecream maker, just pour the mixture into the clever machine and be smug.

Beach photo by Mora McLagan.



Filed under sweet things

port and foie gras macarons

Here is another recipe that I finally got around to trying – one from the macaron making class at L’atelier des Chefs cookery school last month. The macarons are incredibly sweet and the filling is rich and creamy, so just one or two per person is fine as a starter. Mine came out looking rather less than perfect, but they tasted delicious! Continue reading

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Filed under French, sweet things

jelly again

It’s been over a month since I wrote a post about Jelly Ronson – a glow-in-the-dark gin & tonic jelly recipe by Bompas & Parr. But it has taken me this long to find the time, the courage and an occasion special enough to actually make some myself. Here are the results…

dsc_0473I really recommend listening to Paprika Balkanicus whilst making jelly – their songs are at just the right tempo for sprinkling gelatin and dancing around the kitchen in a jelly-like manner. Dr. Oetker’s sachets (available in most supermarkets) seem to work as well as fine leaf gelatine, but can come out a bit lumpy, so I recommend sieving the mixture when you pour it into the jelly mould. Finding moulds was not as easy as I’d thought. I found a few antique copper ones at Spitalfields market – see the post below – and also managed to find a ‘brioche mould’ at a hardware shop, which seemed to do the trick. Maplins sells blacklights. Continue reading


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glow-in-the-dark gin jelly!

I was very excited when I came across the amazing jellymongers at Bompas & Parr, who explore the space between food and architecture using jelly!

Here they bring you Jelly Ronson; a glow-in-the-dark gin jelly, which I will be attempting to make in the very near future. Let me know if you try it and we can compare jelly photos…

jellyronson_landscapeJelly Ronson, a glow-in-the-dark gin jelly was created by Bompas & Parr for Mark Ronson’s 33rd birthday party held at Hedsor House on the 4th September 2008. The jelly uses Bulldog Gin with it’s assortment of rare and exotic botanicals including Poppy and Dragon Eye. Continue reading


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honey & walnut bread

This is from Annette Yates’ inspiringly named Fresh Bread in the Morning from your Bread Machine and for this you will need a breadmaker… Continue reading


Filed under breads, sweet things