Showing posts with label Spring and Summer. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Spring and Summer. Show all posts

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Strawberry Balsamic Hand Pies

strawberry balsamic hand pie

You know when you meet someone for the first time, and you just immediately know you will be friends? With my current housemate K, I somehow just knew even before we had actually met. A strange set of circumstances led me to move in while she was overseas, and I wouldn't actually meet her until a few days later.

But seeing her beautiful apartment with shelves full of books, and kitchen cupboards with (seriously) about a dozen kinds of vinegar, I could tell that she was a foodie bookworm like me, and I just knew we would get along. Although we've discovered many other things in common in the time since, I'll always remember that we bonded over a shared love of vinegar.

strawberry balsamic hand pie

Vinegar is not just for salads and pickles! I have loved strawberries and balsamic vinegar together from the very minute I first tried it, but I do remember a lot of people being sceptical about the pairing a few years ago. It's definitely something that needs to be tasted to be believed. Luckily these days, the combination seems as common and unquestioningly good as salt and caramel, or peanut butter and chocolate. A good quality vinegar can elevate a humble strawberry from childhood snack to all grown up in an instant.

strawberry balsamic hand pie

The strawberries have been delicious so far this spring, and I've been eating them by the punnet full. I've been using them in my daily green smoothie, an afternoon snack, and sometimes even for dessert as well. Every recipe idea I come up with lately has seemed to be all about berries! But why not, they are one of my favourite foods, their season is short and they should be celebrated!

strawberry balsamic hand pie

I decided to make mini hand pies, which I love because they are the most perfectly portable and cute miniature snacklet - great for kids, picnics or just with a cup of tea. The strawberry juices bubbled and overflowed, which gave them a lovely rustic homemade look. While they are a tiny bit fiddly to make, the process is very easy and totally worth it. You do get into a bit of a production line, which when you get into the baking groove can be quite therapeutic!

strawberry balsamic hand pie

I used the same pastry as my cherry jam pop tarts from a few years ago, which is super simple to make. Do keep any excess in the fridge to continue chilling while you roll it out, as it becomes a little sticky as it warms to room temperature. The strawberries are sliced and stirred together with some good quality caramelised balsamic vinegar and flour. Mine were very fresh and sweet and didn't need any additional sugar in the fruit mixture. I gave mine just a light dusting of raw sugar prior to baking and think they're very cute as they are, but you could also make a simple glaze if you fancy.

strawberry balsamic hand pie


Friday, October 10, 2014

Baked Doughnuts with Fresh Berry and Pomegranate Glaze

baked doughnut with fresh berry glaze

I say it all the time, I love what I do, but I have pretty much forgotten what a weekend feels like. A day off is an extremely precious thing not to be taken for granted. Waking up on a day free of work to do anything you want to do - or nothing at all - feels as good if not better than waking up on your birthday! Oh the beautiful possibilities.

After a sleep in, a lazy cup of coffee and a walk in the sunshine to the farmers market or the beach or my favourite café, my favourite thing to do on my day off is, of course, baking.

baked doughnut with fresh berry glaze

I have quite a large archive of doughnut recipes. I do love making them and coming up with fun flavour combinations, but deep frying can be messy and tricky to keep the temperature at a consistent level. When I saw this recipe for baked doughnuts that claimed they were as good as the fried kind, and didn't need a specialised doughnut pan, I obviously had to try it out.

It is a yeasted raised recipe from one of my most trusted sources on all things doughnuts, Lara Ferroni. Of course containing yeast, it does take some time to prove, but I had all the time in the world on my glorious day off to potter around the house while I waited. Bliss.

baked doughnut with fresh berry glaze

Fresh berries are just starting to come into season and they are wonderful so far, definitely one of my favourite things about spring time. I wanted to achieve the classic look of a pink glazed doughnut but using fresh berries and pomegranate for flavour and the perfect colour, without artificial ingredients or food colouring. And of course, I piled as many fresh berries and pomegranate seeds on top as would fit. The combination is delicious.

This is a great base recipe to start from and would be delicious with any flavour of glaze or icing you can imagine! If you prefer a more traditional doughnut, you can brush with melted butter while fresh and hot from the oven and dip straight into cinnamon sugar.

baked doughnut with fresh berry glaze

When eaten fresh, these doughnuts are truly as good as the real thing, but a whole lot better for your waistline. I'd definitely recommend eating these on the same day as you bake them - all doughnuts are best eaten fresh but these ones especially. However if you do have some left over, store in an airtight container and warm them up for around 10 seconds in the microwave to soften them back up before you eat.

baked doughnut with fresh berry glaze

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Star Anise Panna Cotta with Caramelised Pineapple

star anise panna cotta with caramelised pineapple

I love the changing of the seasons. Sydney does this time of year especially well - when the wind is warm, the air has a hint of jasmine flowers, the days get longer and the jacaranda trees are intense purple. Spring is always an incredibly inspiring time for me, a time when good things seem to happen. And so, I thought I'd make another one of these lists of my favourite things, moments and things to be grateful for. And if you haven't ever made a gratitude list like this, I'd encourage you to do the same!

• fried chicken, gossip and bad TV with the girls • great coffee at Rose Bay Diner • buying myself flowers • making an epic birthday cake • eggplant, always • working on exciting new projects • editing photos with my new friend • impromptu lounge room dance parties • binge watching scary shows • spring cleaning and de-cluttering • green juice • laughing until my eyes water and my stomach hurts • homemade pickles - stay tuned! • postcards from Paris • spending lunch breaks away from my laptop • nostalgic snacks • writing lots of lists • typography inspiration • getting a cat this weekend! • homemade mac and cheese • the sunset that broke the internet • taking a break to play in the sunshine

star anise panna cotta with caramelised pineapple

Let me tell you, this recipe is good. It's a simple creamy panna cotta infused with star anise and vanilla bean but it gets interesting with the spiced caramelised pineapple on top. The caramel sauce turns this dessert into something resembling a creme caramel, and the sweet golden pineapple is the perfect accompaniment.

The star anise is subtle all the way through even though it is used in both elements, but I actually preferred it this way over a strong aniseed taste. I've served it in cute little jars (I'm totally obsessed, I know) but you could also turn the panna cottas out of their ramekins and serve the caramel and pineapple alongside it as a plated dessert.

star anise panna cotta with caramelised pineapple


Friday, June 27, 2014

Papaya & Coconut Pops (Gluten Free)

papaya coconut pops

Up until this week's snowpocalypse, you'd be forgiven for thinking that winter had forgotten Sydney entirely this year. The days were still sunny and warm, and I hadn't even busted out my favourite scarves or taken my coats out of their dry cleaning sleeves from last year.

Salads and ice cream were still  firmly on the menu, so when I received some beautiful red papaya and yellow pawpaw from Australian Papaya and Impact Communications, all I could think of were summery recipe ideas to show off the tropical fruit flavours.

It's one of the world's healthiest foods with a huge array of health benefits from immune boosting properties and helping protect against heart disease to cancer-fighting antioxidants and many others too. It truly is an amazing super food - and delicious too!

papaya coconut pops

I had to ignore my instinct to add tequila, chilli and salt and make a tropical cocktail, especially after the week I've had, because the recipe was supposed to appeal to the kiddies and be family friendly. Most of the time when I eat papaya, all I add is a little squeeze of lime, so I decided to play with that concept and keep the flavours as pure as possible.

I created these stripy Papaya & Coconut Popsicles, which are completely gluten free and vegan too. To add a little bit of sweetness I made a simple syrup using coconut sugar and lime juice, and added that into some pureed fresh papaya, layered in popsicle molds with coconut milk. I think they turned out very cute! It's the perfect healthy and fun snack for kids and grownups alike.

And yes, in case you were wondering, I'm definitely making a cocktail with the leftover papaya! Happy Friday!

papaya coconut pops


Thursday, April 17, 2014

Chocolate and Malt Speckled Ice Cream Bombe

Chocolate and Malt Speckled Ice Cream Bombe

Easter definitely snuck up on me this year! Even though the Easter eggs have been in the shops since just days after Christmas, they are quite easy to ignore until the very last minute. I haven't even had a hot cross bun yet, let alone made any long weekend plans!

This year, I couldn't get my mind off all things robins egg blue and speckled after finding some beautiful truffle-filled eggs. I couldn't take my eyes off this gorgeous cake from The Cake Blog, but of course, I wanted to put my own spin on it, and so the Speckled Ice Cream Bombe was born!

Chocolate and Malt Speckled Ice Cream Bombe

I considered a few different flavour combinations including the delicious fresh mint that has since become a firm favourite, but I decided on a Malt no churn ice cream with a few drops of colouring for that gorgeous teal hue, and finely chopped chocolate 'speckles'. The flavour combination is a classic for a reason, it just works so well. Chocolate and malt is a match made in heaven.

I know I've said it before, but this is seriously the easiest ice cream in the world to make, with no fancy ice cream maker required, no custard to make, and no extra egg whites to deal with. With a generous drizzling of a rich chocolate fudge sauce to finish, no one needs to know that your totally stunning Easter dessert was a total breeze to make (although slightly tricky to photograph!)

Chocolate and Malt Speckled Ice Cream Bombe

I think kids and adults would both love this dessert, and imagine how good it would be as the base of a malty milkshake or scooped on top of pancakes for breakfast on Easter morning. You could make smaller individual ice cream bombes in teacups or ramekins - so cute! I'm making myself hungry, it might be time to indulge in a hot cross bun finally!

Just a quick little not to say I hope you all have a safe and happy Easter, and enjoy some good food and time with your family and friends over the long weekend! xx

Chocolate and Malt Speckled Ice Cream Bombe


Friday, April 11, 2014

Plum, Blueberry and Thyme Galette

plum, blueberry & thyme galette

Happy Friday! I'm thankful for a great week filled with work, but also some laughs, good food and exciting opportunities. There is the slightest chill in the air and with daylight savings ending, it's starting to feel like autumn is truly setting in. Truth be told, autumn might just be my favourite season in Sydney. Since I generally make these lists of the things I'm loving about once every season, I thought the timing was right for the Autumn edition. Here we go...

fairy floss cloudsepic french toast at Three Williams • getting ready to launch my new business Lulu & Bee - stay tuned! • beach picnics with champagne at sunset • pickles • facing my fear of dinosaurs • polkadot tights • exciting opportunities • oh, Daisy! • missing Malaysia, especially Penang • cooking dinner with my housemate • strawberry and gin punchKaren & Shaun's beautiful weddingand the invitation suite I designed for them • homemade pulled pork sandwiches • finishing my web development course • fabulous new maxi dresses • working with my sister • shooting cocktails at The Rook and The Winery • purple glitter manicure • rewatching Buffy • cuddles • late night flower arrangingBeth's 21st party • a slight chill in the autumn air

plum, blueberry & thyme galette

This galette straddles the line between summer and autumn, which makes it just perfect for this time of the year. It is the kind of dessert that looks impressive even though it was a breeze to make, shows off seasonal produce and has a stunning combination of flavours.

The thyme may seem like a slightly unusual addition, but I can assure you it is what makes this dessert special. It ties the sweet plums and tart berries together beautifully. With a big scoop of vanilla ice cream (or even ginger ice cream, which I have been making on and off for the past few years) on top, I can't imagine a more perfect dessert for right now. Make it this weekend!

plum, blueberry & thyme galette

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Baked Peaches with Mascarpone, Salted Caramel and Crumble

baked peaches

I realise that it might be a little bit cruel to be talking about dessert at breakfast time, especially when salted caramel is involved, but I just had to share this recipe with you. I've cooked up some pretty delicious things in recent times but I've gotta say - and this is a big call - this recipe is my new favourite. I'm already looking for another occasion to make it again soon.

It involves beautiful summer fruit (I used peaches but you could try other stone fruit as well), vanilla bean-spiked mascarpone, a homemade oat crumble and a generous amount of salted caramel. It elevates an already beautiful peach to something almost transcendent.

baked peaches

It came about when I was looking for a quick but still impressive dessert to make for a dinner party last weekend. This fit the bill perfectly, and was definitely a crowd pleaser. The flavours just work.

When you get a little of everything on your spoon, it's a party in your mouth between the sweet, creamy, salty and crunchy elements. The oat crumble and caramel sauce can be made well before your guests arrive, and the peaches popped into the oven just before you serve the main course.

baked peaches

As I mentioned earlier, I think it would also be amazing with other stone fruit such as nectarines or plums. It could even work with grilled fruit such as figs, mango or pineapple. Uhh, yum! And in winter a version with pears or apples would be the ultimate comfort food.

You could try a big scoop of ice cream or creme fraiche instead of the mascarpone, and crumbled meringue or praline on top. With room for versatility like that, I think this recipe will become a firm part of my repertoire!

baked peaches

Monday, February 10, 2014

Churros with White Chocolate Raspberry Ganache

churros with raspberry ganache

It was only after I'd made, styled and photographed this dessert that I planned to post next week that I realised that it'd actually be a pretty awesome dessert for Valentines Day. Apparently in February I develop an infatuation with doughnuts and raspberries, as last year's post contained accidentally similar flavours!

Let me preface this post by saying I've never been a fan of the rampant commercialism that comes along with VDay. This is also my first one as a single lady in years... But this year I'm actually a little thankful for a little reminder to show and tell my friends how much I love and appreciate them, because it's something we perhaps don't do as often as we should. I know I'm guilty.

churros with raspberry ganache

I like to show my love for the people in my life with cooking, whether it be making their favourite foods or express posting them a batch of cookies. More than anything I wish I could teleport all of my friends from their various corners of the globe, get them all in a room together, drink some wine, laugh a lot, cook them an incredible meal, and finish with this dessert.

So whether you're spending time with your boyfriend, girlfriend or best friend, I hope you tell them how much they mean to you. And not just on Valentines Day, but often. I urge you to avoid the tacky store-bought flowers and overpriced chocolates. This year, show your love with something homemade instead, whether it be a home-cooked meal, a scrapbook of photos, or if you're crafty, a DIY gift. There's lots of ideas over here!

churros with raspberry ganache

These churros all but vanished, they were consumed so fast. A few even went missing during the photo shoot. I love this combination of flavours - a barely sweet doughnut cooked to a perfect golden brown, paired with a white chocolate and raspberry ganache, that also includes a healthy splash of Chambord raspberry liqueur. And some sprinkles for good measure, because lets face it - sprinkles are never a bad idea :)

churros with raspberry ganache

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Thursday Tipples 03 / Tipsy Peach Iced Tea

drunken peach iced tea

I used to think of myself as strictly a coffee only girl, but things have definitely changed. I sometimes still have a coffee in the morning or if I'm out with friends, but I'm predominately a tea drinker these days!

I have a problem walking past T2, but an even bigger problem if I end up walking in. This photo only shows part of my collection *blush!* If you've been reading for a while, you'll know that I love tea in all manner of desserts, from earl grey ice cream to chai doughnuts, but I am always intrigued when I see tea used in cocktails.

Last summer I started making iced tea regularly because it was so delicious and refreshing, and I couldn't help but think that some kinds of tea would be awesome with a few shots of booze - because what isn't improved with booze, really? - and served as a pitcher cocktail.

drunken peach iced tea

The possibilities are endless of course - a fruity tisane with vodka, lemons and strawberry pieces, or a twist on the mint julep with peppermint tea, bourbon and fresh mint (I can tell you that this is in fact delicious!)

For this month's Thursday Tipples post, I experimented with a vanilla black tea combined with peaches, spiced rum, vodka and a little Cointreau, and it turned out even better than I'd hoped. This drink feels very summery because of the peaches, and I loved the subtle spices that came through from the tea and the rum.

So here's something to do this weekend... Make a big pitcher of tipsy iced tea and drink this with friends at sunset, sitting on the balcony or out in the backyard - perfect! You can thank me on Monday ;)

drunken peach iced tea


Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Pavlova Ice Cream Smash

pavlova ice cream

I think I got a bit prematurely excited when I thought that with the cruisy freelance lifestyle I've adopted, that I might actually get to enjoy a Sydney summer for a change. Well, life and work have conspired to be non-stop busy since the new year began and I spent 17 hours yesterday looking at my computer screen. But as I mentioned in my last post, this year is all about gratitude, and I truly am very grateful to be doing what I love, sometimes while still in my pj's. Here are a few other things that are making me smile these days...

• sunset gin & tonics • brainstorming dessert ideas • winning scrabble • T2's sencha quince tealooking through childhood photos • this view (again) • solo lunches • spontaneous adventures • my plush zombie named benny • hot chocolate fuelled business planning sessions • bri's amazingly honest post about anxiety and insecurity • perfect summer days • my new chevron rug • breakfasts from room 10 • decluttering my closet (and donating a bunch of clothes) • dreaming about visiting palm springs • the best ever homemade mac & cheese • a garden full of hydrangeas • working on exciting, inspiring projects • eating summer fruits every single day!

pavlova ice cream

Speaking of summer and fruit, Australia Day is just around the corner and I've got you covered for dessert. I love the very casual and laid back nature of our national holiday! No matter what your plans are - backyard BBQ or beach picnic - this patriotic pavlova no churn ice cream smash is made in jars, so just twist on the lids to make it perfectly portable. In my opinion, it tastes best when slightly softened and melty.

I layered the ice cream with a mixed berry compote, crumbled meringues (store bought is fine for this) and some fresh passionfruit pulp. The combination was sublime. I loved digging in and finding a juicy blueberry, or a piece of meringue that melted in your mouth. You can also experiment with other fruit in there as well. I think mango curd and kiwi fruit, or strawberry and rhubarb would be absolutely delicious too.

And for all of my readers and friends in Victoria, Canberra and South Australia, hope you're managing to stay cool in those crazy hot temperatures! And if you need a sweet treat to cool down, check out these refreshing recipes.

pavlova ice cream

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Berry and White Chocolate Blondies

berry white chocolate blondies

The New Year has got me (and most of you I'd wager) thinking about new starts and resolutions. There is an incredible amount of pressure on us in January to blast all our bad habits, save money and drop the few kilos we all inevitably put on during the silly season. But I prefer thought out, measurable goals to the vagueness of a yearly 'resolution'. Goals are broken down into steps, giving you a clear direction and also a deadline to keep you accountable! I wanted to share a few of mine...

  • Read 20 books. I used to read so much. I had a 2 hour commute to college/work every day and would pass the time by reading whatever I could get my hands on. I was averaging about fifty books a year. I miss that tremendous appetite I had for reading, so this year one of my goals is to read 20 books, and in doing so also eliminate the pile of unread books on my bedside table. 
  • Have an adventure once a week. I've learned that I need little adventures every couple of days in order to function creatively. Stepping away from my computer to discover something new sees me come back refreshed and ultimately always more productive. It can be as simple as a walk to a new beach, a trip to a café I haven't tried before, or getting out of the city entirely. 
  • Grow the Spicyicecream brand: food blog and graphic design. I have big plans for this space in the next 12 months, but I can't say too much about that yet! I also launched my design company recently, so this year will be about working hard to grow both businesses, and working on as many projects as possible that combine my love of food with my love of design.
  • Write and take photos every single day. I really want to push both of these skills in 2014, and the best way is to practice practice practice! This also ties into my overarching goal for the year, which is to Be Grateful so I'm going to try and document the special things that happen every day.

berry white chocolate blondies

I've had blondies on the brain since I made the Banana Split Blondies a few months ago. Since the original recipe is such a blank canvas, I wondered what other ingredients could be added into them, like Steph's delicious looking rhubarb and ginger version. I decided to try a summery version with fresh berries and white chocolate chips.

I used the exact same recipe as before, but it turned out a little more 'gooey' than 'cakey' this time, even after allowing a little extra baking time. Perhaps because of the fruit juices that are released while baking? They're still very tasty - anything with berries and white chocolate is a winner in my book. Just make sure to cool them completely before trying to cut them up, or they'll fall apart. Adding a little extra flour and baking powder may also help, but you'll have to experiment with that.

Have you set any goals for the year? I'd love to hear yours in the comments!

berry white chocolate blondies

Monday, December 23, 2013

Simple Dinners 07 / Prawn and Watermelon Panzanella

prawn watermelon panzanella

An Australian Christmas is a magical thing. 

There's usually seafood, salads and pavlova topped with lots of summer fruit. With some luck it's warm and sunny, and lunch is usually followed by a dip in the pool... unless you opt for a nap on the couch instead. I really can't imagine Christmas any other way.

If you're looking for a last minute Christmas salad or side dish or even a quick summer dinner, this is it. Ticking all the boxes - seasonal, delicious, pretty on the plate and a little bit unique, this Prawn and Watermelon Panzanella combines some seriously awesome flavours in the one dish. From start to finish, the whole thing took less than 15 minutes and can even be made on the BBQ.

A traditional panzanella is a great way to use in-season tomatoes and day old bread, making it a fantastic summer meal. But I took it a step further, because I love watermelon, feta and mint together. And to make it a little more substantial as a meal, I added some beautiful pan-fried prawns, but you could add grilled chicken or thinly sliced rare beef or lamb instead, or leave out the meat entirely for a yummy vegetarian dish!

I wish all of my readers a wonderful, relaxing Christmas. I hope you enjoy lots of great food and good times with your family and friends. Thank you so much for all of your support this year, and I'm very excited about what 2014 will bring! I'll be back next week sharing some of my favourite posts of the year xx

prawn watermelon panzanella


Thursday, December 19, 2013

Thursday Tipples 02 / Pomegranate Gin Smash

pomegranate gin smash

I feel like a completely different person since I started working full time freelance. I feel so lucky to be able to do what I love. Of course running my own business is brand new to me and fraught with all kinds of new challenges. I'm learning every single day. But the thing I love the most is setting my own schedule. Taking my laptop to work from anywhere and being able to sneak out for a short break at the beach in the afternoon when the mood strikes on a sunny day (!)

For the first time in a long time I feel like I'm actually getting to enjoy summer. And after a dip at the beach and a walk back up the hill, you need a refreshing sunset drink. Or perhaps you're looking for a Christmas or New Years Eve party starter? This second instalment in my Thursday Tipples series fits the bill perfectly.

pomegranate

I was a sort of late bloomer and only discovered gin last year. This resulted in a summer of gin where I drank quite a lot of G&T's. This year I'm branching out to try gin (my pick is Hendricks, I love it) with some of my favourite flavours like fresh pomegranate and mint. I'm a little embarrassed to admit that this is only the second time I've used my cocktail shaker in the five or so years since I bought it, but I think that will all change over the next few months.

This drink is super refreshing and perfect on a sunny day. Tall, cold, a little bit tart from the pomegranate and lime, a little bit sweet, and looking very Christmassy too. It's easy to make, and definitely adaptable to use your favourite flavours. Enjoy!

What's your favourite summer drink? Tell me in the comments below!

pomegranate gin smash


Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Chocolate Cherry Bourbon Cheesecake + 13 Ways with Cherries

chocolate bourbon cherry cheesecake

CHERRIES! I get super excited this time of year, because yes, Christmas is a little over a week away... but even more awesomely, almost all of my favourite fruits are in season, abundant, and totally delicious. Berries, mangoes, nectarines, peaches, figs (soon) and cherries!

They're one of my favourite fruits and only have a very short season, so I wanted to share 13 amazing looking recipes that I hope you'll try. And if you're in the northern hemisphere and fresh cherries aren't available, most of these recipes work with preserved cherries too. I think some of these would be perfect at your Christmas lunch!

13 Ways with... Cherries

13 Ways with Cherry
Picture Credits: Our Kitchen & Cookie and Kate

1. This Cherry, Lime & Whisky Cocktail from Our Kitchen looks very pretty, and sounds perfect for any Christmas party, no matter which hemisphere you're in. Stripy straws a must!

2. I only discovered Rainer cherries recently, and loved their sweeter flavour. I loved Cookie and Kate's lovely twist on the classic cocktail - the Rainier Cherry Mojito. Sounds perfect for a sunset tipple on a hot summer's day.

13 Ways with Cherry
Picture Credits: How Sweet Eats & Martha Stewart

3. How good do these Roasted Cherry Bourbon Milkshakes with Hot Fudge look! This recipe from How Sweet Eats looks like a very, very special boozy treat. I've also become addicted to this beautiful and new-to-me blog. Check it out!

4. When I was in New York earlier this year, I became addicted to this Cherry Juice that was sold at the Union Square Greenmarket, which was tart and super refreshing. I think Martha Stewart's Sour Cherry Lemonade would be just as delicious. I love that it's served in a large pitcher - perfect for your summer BBQ's.

13 Ways with Cherry
Picture Credits: Cannelle et Vanille & Spicyicecream

5. Aran from Cannelle et Vanille is a very talented lady who always makes the most delicious looking desserts, and these Cherry, Cinnamon and Vanilla Flan Tarts are no exception! I love that she has mixed different kinds of cherries in the one dessert for colour and flavour.

6. I made these Cherry Poptarts with Vanilla Bean Glaze for my blogger girlfriends a few Christmases ago and they were a massive hit. The best thing is that they're made with a good quality (or even homemade if you're feeling keen) cherry jam, so you can enjoy them all year round.

13 Ways with Cherry
Picture Credits: What Katie Ate & Lara Ferroni

7. What Katie Ate is one of my favourite blogs without a doubt. I remember seeing this epic Black Forest Gateau (from an episode of Masterchef Australia) soon after I discovered it and was immediately hooked. Luckily it's still picture perfect, even if the recipe had a few problems.

8. Lara Ferroni is the author of a book all about doughnuts (which I own and love), so I would trust her implicitly on all matters concerning fried dough. I love the sound of these simple Ricotta Drop Doughnuts with Fresh Cherry Sauce. Perfect for breakfast or dessert!

13 Ways with Cherry
Picture Credits: Citrus and Candy & Gourmet Traveller

9. My gorgeous friend Karen from Citrus and Candy does decadent desserts like no other, and clafoutis is a great "lazy but fabulous" option, in her words. So it goes to reason that this Chocolate and Cherry Clafoutis is perfect for the busy Christmas season, when you'd rather spend time by the pool than in a hot kitchen. Perfect.

10. Christmas breakfast is sorted. This alluring stack of Cherry Toast with Vanilla Cream looks like the perfect way to start your Christmas Day. With a few Mimosa's too?

13 Ways with Cherry
Picture Credits: Call Me Cupcake & The Bojon Gourmet

11. Ice cream on Christmas Day is a bit of a tradition here in Australia, because it usually gets so hot! Dessert is often followed by a dip in the swimming pool. I really love the look of this festive Fudge Ice Cream Cake from Call Me Cupcake, topped with ruby red cherries. Stunning!

12. This Roasted Cherry Vanilla Ice Cream with Bourbon and Chocolate from the Bojon Gourmet looks like a grown up cherry ripe. And that is definitely something I can get behind. If you haven't already checked out this blog, do! It's filled with great recipes and amazing photographs.

chocolate bourbon cherry cheesecake

13. It was my Mum's birthday over the past weekend and she deliberated long and hard over the kind of cake she wanted. "Cheesecake would be nice... or something with cherries" were her requests, so I set about combining the two in one decadent birthday dessert - Chocolate Cherry Bourbon Cheesecake - that would also be perfect for Christmas.

I think next time I'd swap half the amount of cream cheese for mascarpone or ricotta (or a combination of the two) and use melted chocolate instead of cocoa powder. I was a little rushed for time, used a cake tin that was slightly too small and probably didn't give the cheesecake quite long enough to cool in the oven before transferring it to the fridge, so it sunk a little and developed a few cracks in the top. Oops. Luckily with some strategic photo angles you can't really tell, and it still tasted great. I even got Mum to cut her cake for me while I photographed it! Happy Birthday Mummy! xx

Hope you give these a try, and if you have any other great cherry recipes, please post the link in the comments below!

chocolate bourbon cherry cheesecake

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