Berry Berry Tarts

Fruittart1 Here’s a fruit tart we’ve been making for our shops. It’s a pretty basic recipe, especially if you can buy in the tart shells (otherwise there’s a recipe for pie dough here). We make the tarts in single serving size, but there is no reason it couldn’t be a full pie.


25 gr sugar
175 gr ground almonds
225 gr butter
4 eggs
50 gm flour
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
Raspberry jam
Raspberries, blueberries, or other berries you have to hand.
Powdered sugar, for dusting.

What to do:


1. Coat bottom of the tart (or pie) shells with a thin layer of raspberry jam.

2. Beat the sugar and butter together until smooth.

3. Add the ground almond and continue mixing.

4. Beat in the eggs, one at a time.

5. Mix in the flour.

6. Use a piping bag or spoon to spread the frangipane (almond mixture) in to the tart shells.

7. Press in the berries.

8. Bake at 150C for about half an hour, or until the frangipane looks lightly brown.

9. Dust with powdered sugar.

Technorati tags: berrytartbakingpastryrecipe

Tarting It Up with Lemon

Lemontart I promised a customer, who loved this tart, that I would post the recipe. It’s closely based on a recipe from Simply Sensational Desserts by Francois Payard, with the only difference a slight modification in the sugar. I have found that Payard’s book has given me the greatest baking success of any cookbook, so I highly recommend it.

With any tart or pie baking, the hardest part is usually the dough, and so if you want to make this the quick and easy way, buy a pie shell or some tart shells from your local supermarket. Some of them are quite tasty, and you’ll save yourself a lot of time and trouble. If you do want to make the dough yourself, you can find Payard’s recipe here but make sure you have flour without raising agents!

Anyway, once you have the pie shells, whether you make or buy them, you’ll find this is one of the easiest recipes in the world!!!

Lemon Tart


Lemontart23 Lemons
45 gm butter
3 eggs
10 small pie tart crusts, or one large pie crust
130 gr sugar

What to do:

1. Preheat the oven to 150 C.
2. Bring water in double boiler to simmer.
3. Zest andjuice the lemons.
4. Put lemon and eggs in top of double boiler (before putting over heat) and whisk until smooth. Add the sugar and butter.
5. Cook in double boiler until the butter has melted and the mixture is smooth.
6. Allow to cool for 15 minutes.
7. Pour into pastry shells.
8. Bake for 8 minutes, or until the centre has become solid.
9. Decorate with a slice of lemon, or with some drizzled chocolate, as I have done.

Technorati tags: , , , ,

Irish Whiskey Cream

WhiskeyCream One of our special flavours, for the food festival just passed, was dark chocolate ice cream topped with Kilbeggan whiskey cream. It’s a magic combination, with the smoky properties of Kilbeggan well-suited to dark chocolate. There’s a recipe below, and with Christmas coming up, I’m sure you can find many applications for it. It is also, by the way, great in coffee.

Murphys Ice Whiskey Cream


  • 227 ml cream
  • 1.5 tablespoons Kilbeggan or other full-flavoured Irish whiskey
  • 1.5 tablespoons sugar

What to do:

1. Combine the cream and sugar in a mixing bowl.

2. Whip until soft peaks form.

3. Add the whiskey and whip fully.

Note: Different people will have different ideas of how sweet they like it, so you should adjust the sugar according to your own preferences.

Technorati tags: , , , ,

Caramelised Orange Marmalade

Marmalade As part of the Dingle Food and Wine Festival, we’ve decided to do an Irish theme. It seems especially pertinant in these times, and we should be able to have some fun with it. We are going to do specials like Barry’s Tea Ice Cream and a Biscuit, Dark Chocolate Ice Cream with Irish Whiskey Cream, Bailey’s Ice Cream with Dingle Blackberry Sauce, and Brown Bread Ice Cream with Caramelised Orange Marmalade.

The last one sounds a bit strange, but everyone who has tried it has been delighted. It’s an odd sensation of eating ice cream while your brain is telling you you’re imbibing that old breakfast standby of brown bread and marmalade.

I caramelised the marmalade to make the flavours a bit deeper and complex, and it’s an easy thing to do and could have many applications. Here’s a recipe:

Murphys Caramelised Orange Marmalade


1 jar marmalade – choose a marmalade that’s tart!


What to Do

1. Empty the jar into a high-sided saucepan or pot.
2. Add water – use 20% of the volume of the jar.
3. Cook on high heat, stirring from time to time, until the marmalade turns a deep brown colour. Be careful – it will be extremely hot, so beware of splatters.
4. Remove from the heat and stir in more water – again, use 20% of the volume of the jar.
5. Serve warm over brown bread ice cream.

Technorati tags: , , , ,

Tiramisù della Mamma

tiramisu I like to think I’m quite adventuresome in the kitchen. However, with certain foods I’m an absolute traditionalist, and tiramisù is one of them. Italian for “pick me up” or “pull me up,” there are some who say the dessert originated in Sienna and others who claim it’s a relatively recent invention from Treviso, near Venice. In any case, it’s the one dessert that so regularly disappoints me at restaurants that I have stopped ordering it unless I am absolutely certain they will do it right.

marsalaFor me, tiramisù must have mascarpone, and it must have egg yolks (unlike Gordon Ramsey’s and Jamie Oliver’s versions – although from a catering standpoint I can understand why they don’t want the risks associated with raw eggs). I don’t want it with orange flavouring or variations of the alcohol (Marsala wine).

I guess you could say I want my tiramisù the way my grandmother used to serve it up at her house in the Ticino. I pressed her for a recipe shortly before she died, but she confessed that she didn’t actually make it herself and had brought it in on the sly each time we begged her for more. I never found out her source.

However, my partner Manuela, who is from Venice, recently managed to retrieve her mother’s tiramisù recipe. We made it at home last night, and it came out just about perfect in my eyes. Best of all, once you have the right ingredients, it’s quiet easy and quick to make. If you wish to try it, the recipe is below. I’ll call it Tiramisù della Mamma in honour of Manuela’s mother.

Please note that this recipe does contain raw egg yolks, so it’s not suitable for pregnant women, and I would suggest you use fresh, local organic or free range eggs from a source you trust.


Tiramisù della Mamma


  • 3 egg yolks
  • 80 gm + 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 250 g mascarpone (at room temperature)
  • 250 ml cream
  • 1 packet savoiardi (lady fingers)
  • 75 ml + 1 teaspoon Marsala wine
  • 125 ml fresh espresso (cooled to room temperature)
  • Pure cocoa for dusting

What to do:

1. Beat 80 grams of the sugar and the egg yolks together.
2. Add the mascarpone and 1 teaspoon Marsala wine and mix until smooth.
3. Whip the cream until you have soft peaks.
4. Fold into the mascarpone/egg mixture.
5. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of sugar to the espresso and stir until dissolved.
6. Add the remaining Marsala wine and transfer to a shallow dish.
7. Dip the savoiardi (lady fingers) into the Marsala/espresso mixture for about 5 seconds.
8. Put a layer of the dipped savoiardi into a round bowl (traditional in the Veneto).
9. Add a layer of the mascarpone/cream custard.
tiramisu210. Add another layer of of the savoiardi, then the remaining custard.
11. Coat the top with dusted cocoa.
12. Refrigerate for at least four hours and preferably over night.
13. Bring out at least half an hour before serving to so it’s not served at a chilled temperature.

Since Marsala wines and espressos vary so much in taste, it might take a bit of tinkering for you to get the balance right between the coffee and Marsala. It’s part of the fun!

Technorati tags: , , ,

Wiebke’s Fudge Cake

fudge Since we’ve introduced waffles into our shops, we’ve been offering cake less often. However, in the days when we were selling lots of cake, Wiebke’s Fudge Cake was our best selling chocolate cake, and we still have it from time to time.

Its appeal is broad enough that you can serve it to grown-ups at any special occasion and be sure that it will go down a storm. For events with lots of smaller kids you could serve it cut in to little finger size pieces.

If you know that all of the people eating the cake prefer dark chocolate, simply substitute the 50% for 70% and satisfy those chocolate cravings!

It is perfect with vanilla ice cream.

This recipe was adapted by Wiebke (my brother’s wife) from a recipe from The Joy of Cooking.

Wiebke’s Fudge Cake


• 215 g butter – cut into pieces and slightly softened
• 15 g butter for greasing baking pan
• 400 g sugar
• 115 g 50% semi-sweet chocolate
• 3 eggs
• 275g non-rising plain flour
• 2 tsp. bread soda
• 250 ml buttermilk
• 1 tsp. vanilla essence

fudge2For the Ganache:

• 80gm butter
• 180gm 50% chocolate
• 180gm 70% chocolate
• 350ml cream

What to do:

1. Place the chocolate in a double boiler to melt.
2. Put the butter and sugar in the mixer and begin to mix.
3. Add eggs one by one by breaking into a plastic jug first and then adding to mixer.
4. Scrape the mix from the sides and bottom of mixing bowl.
5. Continue mixing.
6. Add the fully melted chocolate.
7. Continue mixing.
8. Combine flour and soda and sieve carefully.
9. Add ? of flour/soda and 125mls of buttermilk to the mix and mix on slow speed.
10. Add the next ? of flour/soda and final 125mls of buttermilk. Mix.
11. Add final ? of flour/soda and mix well.
12. Add 3 drops of “Massey” Vanilla.
13. With the dough now well mixed add 150mls of boiling water and continue mixing.
14. Grease and then lightly flour the bottom and sides of the baking pan.
15. Pour the dough mix into the baking pan.
16. Bake in preheated oven @ 180 °C x 45 minutes.
17. Remove baked cake from oven and flip upside down.
18. Leave to cool on cooling rack for at least 2-3 hours.

Making the ganache:

19. Melt 60 g butter in a double boiler.
20. Add 180 g of 70% & 180g of 50% chocolate to the double boiler and melt. Keep temperature to 35 – 45 °C
21.  Warm the cream in a saucepan.
22. Stir the warm cream into the melted chocolate, and keep stirring until smooth.


23. Carefully cut the cake horizontally twice, to make 3 layers. Cut into two if you have to.
24. Add the fudge sauce between the layers and on top.
25. Coat the fudge around the sides.
26. Decorate with chocolate shavings.

Note: I must admit I haven’t made this cake (leaving it to the expert always seemed a good idea to me!), so if you make it any feedback would be doubly welcome.

Technorati tags: 

Peanut and Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

peanut1 Here’s a flavour we have brought in to the shops for the summer, and it’s really gone down a storm. We’re replaced praline for the moment, and so far no one is complaining. Instead, this is becoming one of our summer hit flavours.

It’s an easy enough ice cream to make, since all you need, besides the custard, is a bit of peanut butter and some chocolate chips.

I have to thank my niece Áine for modeling the ice cream! And for those who really know us well, that’s Ivan the ice cream dog’s head in the bottom photo…



• 120g sugar
• 5 egg yolks
• 220 ml cream
• 220 ml milk
• 100 gm peanut butter (chunky)
• 75 g dark chocolate chips.

What to do:

1. Add the egg yolks and beat until thick.
2. Bring the milk to a low simmer.
3. Beat the milk into the egg/sugar mixture in a slow stream.
4. Pour the mixture back into the pan and place over low heat.
5. Stir continuously until the custard thickens slightly (around 65-70C) and just coats the back of a spoon. Don’t over-heat, though, because at around 76C you will scramble the eggs!
6. Immediately remove from the heat.
7. Allow to cool.
8. Combine with the peanut butter (add mix to peanut butter is small amounts, stirring until completely combined).
9. Whip the cream until it has doubled in volume (you should have soft peaks – don’t over-whip).
10. Fold (gently stir) in the custard.
peanut311. Freeze using a domestic ice cream machine, or cover and place in the freezer, adding the chocolate chips when it is somewhat solid.
12. If you’re using a domestic ice cream machine, transfer to a freezer-proof covered container when the ice cream has achieved a semi-solid consistency (around 15 minutes). Place it in the freezer, and continue to freeze until it is solid.

Yield: 8 servings


1. Use a decent peanut butter that’s not too salty (unless you like a salty peanut ice cream!)

2. People can have severe peanut allergies, so make sure anyone you serve it to is not allergic!

3. To pasteurise the eggs, heat the custard to 73C and maintain that temperature for at least 5 minutes. Use a cooking thermometer, though, and keep stirring! If the custard goes any higher than 76C, the eggs will scramble. Immediately cover and place in the freezer until cool.

Technorati tags: