Tell me you don’t have this obsession of wanting to buy every pretty book or magazine you see in the bookstore. Every time I step into one, I’m bound to buy a magazine or a book, except for if I forget to bring any money and when I’m in a hurry. Lol. My shelves are crying out loud for lack of space, the books are now all stacked under my working table. But on the bright side, yes we’re moving and there’ll be MORE shelve space ><
Ok so the other day I was in a grocer, I saw some nice rhubarb. The first (and only) time I ate rhubarb was in Bill’s in Sydney 4-5 years ago. It was a crumble; sweet, tangy and sends chills to your spine. Haha!! I’m just kidding about the last part.
And the moment I saw the rhubarb, I knew I wanted to make a crumble cause I haven’t ate a crumble for so so so long! It’s just one of those comfort food with sweet and tart warm berries or other fruit to perk you up, and a buttery and crunchy crumb to balance the texture and your palate. Amazing.My brother and I loved it. We couldn’t help but ate one bowl each. Haha.It’s always nice to have ice cream to go along with crumbles, but this time around no ice cream and it was just as good! But don’t take my words for it, make it yourself and you’ll get wht I meant.
Rhubarb & Berries Crumble
150-200g rhubarb; stalks trimmed, cut into small 2-3cm chunks
200g strawberries & raspberries (you can use either or both)
60g caster sugar
1/2 vanilla bean, split seeds scraped
120g plain flour
100g caster sugar
1/2 orange zest
50g rolled oats
120g chilled unsalted butter, chopped
pinch of salt
1. Chop chop rhubarb to 2cm pieces. If you have a big baking dish, make them 3cm.
2. Hull, half or quarter strawberries. Scrap seeds of vanilla pod, add into bowl. Add in rhubarb, strawberry and raspberry and caster sugar. Gently toss or mix so the berries are coated with sugar. Let it macerate for 30 minutes.
3. Spread them into your baking dish. Make sure you have enough of fruits in each of the dish.
4. Make crumble. As the name suggest, just crumble everything together. Or use a food processor to whiz everything till it resembles chunky bits or breadcrumbs. If it’s a little dry, add in 1 -2 tsp of water to bind them together so you have some larger crumbles and some loose ones. Scatter crumble evenly on top of the rhubarb mixture.
5. Bake in a preheated oven of 200C for 30 minutes (or more for a bigger sized dish) until crisp and golden and the juices from the fruit bubble up through.
6. Cool but serve warm, with a dollop of ice cream.
Oh my, doesn’t it matches the new layout ? heheh
It was one of the first things that caught my eye when I bought Sur La Table’s The Art and Soul of Baking. It’s at 40% off ($24 only, maybe abt $30 after shipping depending on where u’re at) now at amazon and I bought the book many years ago (about 3) at RM154.12 in one of the book stores here. Is that why Malaysians don’t read / buy books much? It’s just ridiculously priced. Anyway..pardon the Monday talk.
I scaled the recipe down and made only 3 pavlovas. I hand whisked (don’t bother hand whisking if u’re making the full recipe unless u desperately need some hand workout) the meringue and added brown sugar instead, I don’t know what was I thinking then, but here it is. My pavs looked a bit brown cause my temperature was slightly higher than normal pavlova temperature. But still crunchy outside and fluffy inside.
The main reasons of making this was, again, I bought some ingredients and tried to make ‘something’ to use the ingredient. Not oh-I-want-to-make-this-so-i-buy-the-ingredients. Totally opposite. Lol. I am the type that goes and buy random stuffs and figure, oh ok now what am I going to do with this. I find it a little more fun this way. Anyways we’re not talking about that either. The main idea of this pavlova was to use up some of the Korean Strawberries my mum bought from the market. She bought them cause I was sick haha.
That ray of light was totally unintentional. I had not realized it until I’ve uploaded the photos to my mac.
They were small but perfect looking strawberries. Very red, extremely fragrant and sweet! Make some striking red strawberry sorbet; perfect for such hot weathers. I just bought another 2 boxes, I’m hopefully going to make ichigo daifuku with this batch. The last time I made, it was very ugly cause the strawberries were ….. huge and whitish. So… yup, just watch this space for a little longer.
(But then again I’m just saying, I may make something else then lol)
Pavlova with Honey-Lavender cream and Poached Strawberries
(adapted from Sur La Table’s The Art and Soul of Baking)
(makes 8 mini pavlova)
130g caster sugar (2/3 cup)
1 tbsp corn starch
3 large egg whites (abt 80-90g
1/4 tsp cream of tartar / white vinegar / lemon juice
pinch of salt
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
1 box of strawberries (abt 250g); or estimate 3-4 per serving
500ml water / 2 cups
200g sugar / 1 cup
1/2 vanilla pod, seeds scraped.(optional)
2 tbsp caster sugar
t tbsp dried lavender blossoms
250ml whipping cream / 1 cup
1 tbsp mild-flavoured honey
1. Make pavlova. Preheat oven to 120C. In a clean mixing bowl, place egg whites and cream of tartar in and whip on medium high speed until foamy. Gradually add caster sugar and salt. Continue to whisk at high speed till almost stiff peaks, add in vanilla and whisk for a little longer till its very stiff peak. Sift corn starch over meringue and lightly fold it with a spatula.
2. Baking pavlova. Use a 1/3 measuring cup and spoon the meringue out onto a lined tray (with parchment or silpat, up to you). Make a well in the center (so you have more cream later). Bake for 40-50 minutes until faintly golden and crispy on the outside. Transfer to rack and cool completely.
3. Poach the strawberries. Wash berries and pat dry. Hull each berry and cut them into half; cut 1/4 if they are huge. Place water, sugar and vanilla seeds and pod (optional but adds extra yumminess) in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil, until sugar is completely dissolved. Carefully transfer berries into the pot and bring to boil again. (may just take abt 1-2 minutes only) Turn off heat and cover the pot. Let berries sit in the syrup until mixture is at room temperature – about 30 minutes.
4. Make honey-lavender cream. Place sugar and lavender in a spice grinder and blend till fine. Place cream, honey and 1 1/2 tbsp lavender sugar in a clean bowl. Whisk till soft peak forms. Wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes or until ready to assemble.
5. Assemble. Use a slotted spoon to scoop the strawberries from the poaching liquid and drain slightly. (Save the poaching liquid for cocktails / smoothie / juice) Place a meringue on each serving plate. Fill the centre of each meringue with honey lavender cream and top with strawberries. Serve immediately.
The lavender cream went really well with a what-may-be-tasteless-pavlova. Nothing much to comment about the poached strawberries, they were absolutely perfect. Poaching them introduces a mild vanilla flavour (if u’re feeling lavish and adds a vanilla pod) and reduces tartness (if the fruits aren’t very ripe). If the strawberries are small, don’t poach them for too long as it may turn all mushy looses out its texture.
*Since I’m still in the theme, I’d support the Aspiring Bakers #5 Fruity March with this entry.
Because it’s a Monday,
because there’re all the reasons in the world to procrastinate, to indulge, to feel like a zombie today.
Here I present you, the most lovely and naturally coloured; strawberry sorbet!
I’ve tried baking and making mousse cakes with strawberry before but the colour will always be pinkish and not a solid red, just like how the exterior of a strawberry does; a ripe one that is 😛 But I decided to give it a go anyway because usually for a sorbet, it’s fruit puree + simply syrup. No baking involved, no cream or milk to lighten the colour of the end product. I may have a high chance of getting a super red sorbet!
(Actually I made 2 types of ice cream in 1 day, ok not entirely 1 day but I prep-ed the fruits the night before, left in the fridge to macerate and cool, then churn the next morning before I went for my little short weekend getaway.) This was where we were at. more pics up later but for now, just this will do.
Felda Hot Springs Residence in Sungkai, Perak (each villa has their own private hot springs pool! )
OK back to reality. While I was looking for the recipe for my other ice cream, I stumbled upon this in David Lebovitz’s The Perfect Scoop. I’ll tell u what which ice cream it is, but next week. So or the mean time, let’s just focus on the Strawberry Sorbet.
I got these Cameron Highland strawberries from The Curve Flea Market (where I also bought cheap Sugar Apricots) when I met up with Angie from Sea Salt With Food and Wendy from Table for 2 or more. They looked pretty red and ripe, unlike some of those in the supermarket where it’s still semi ripe and a little white/ green near the stem. That’s when you know the strawberries are most likely going to be sour instead of sweet.
(adapted from David Lebovitz’s The Perfect Scoop)
makes about 2 1/2 cups
500g Fresh strawberries, rinsed and hulled
150g sugar (I used 100g only as the strawberries were pretty sweet)
1 tsp kirsch (optional, I did not use)
1 tsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
pinch of salt
Slice strawberries and toss them in a medium bowl with sugar and kirsch, if using. Stir until the sugar begins to dissolve. Cover and let stand for 1 hour (I left mine in the fridge overnight, about 8 hrs), stirring every so often.
Puree the strawberries and their liquid with the lemon juice and salt in a blender or food processor until smooth. Press mixture through a strainer to remove the seeds if you wish.
Chill the mixture thoroughly (I didn’t as I have already chilled it overnight) then churn it in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions. My Cuisinart Ice Cream Maker took about 25-30 minutes as it was only about 2 cups of sorbet. I would have made more if I had more strawberries, but they’re all that’s left
tastes ‘bloody’ good, pun intended ha ha ha !! I shall get more strawberries now..