Lemon Cream Mini Pavlovas

Lemon Cream Mini Pavlovas
Print Recipe
    Servings Prep Time
    8 people 30-40 minutes
    Cook Time Passive Time
    80 minutes 1+ hours
    Servings Prep Time
    8 people 30-40 minutes
    Cook Time Passive Time
    80 minutes 1+ hours
    Lemon Cream Mini Pavlovas
    Print Recipe
      Servings Prep Time
      8 people 30-40 minutes
      Cook Time Passive Time
      80 minutes 1+ hours
      Servings Prep Time
      8 people 30-40 minutes
      Cook Time Passive Time
      80 minutes 1+ hours
      Ingredients
      Mini Pavlovas
      Lemon Cream
      Servings: people
      Instructions
      Mini Pavlovas
      1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a large baking tray with parchment and mark out 8-3" circles. Flip parchment over.
      2. Combine egg whites and cream of tartar. Whip until soft peaks are starting to form. Gradually add sugar, about a tablespoon at a time. Scrape the sides of the bowl and continue to whip on high speed until stiff and glossy, about 6-7 minutes using a stand mixer.
      3. Add vanilla and whip to combine.
      4. Sift cornstarch over the meringue and fold to combine.
      5. Fit a large piping bag with your desired tip, I used a Wilton 1M.
      6. Fill the piping bag with meringue and squeeze a dab of meringue onto the corners of the parchment to stick it to the baking tray. This will help keep the parchment from moving while you pipe. Place the baking tray on a slightly damp kitchen towel to prevent the tray from moving. Fill in the traced circle, creating a base. Continue to pipe along the edge of the base for two turns, creating a basket.
      7. Place the tray in the oven on the middle rack and immediately turn oven temperature to 225°F. Bake for 80 minutes, turn off the oven and allow meringues to remain undisturbed in the oven until completely cool. Meringues will be firm and hollow sounding with a slight bit of tackiness and chew in the bottom layer.
      Lemon Cream
      1. Combine all ingredients except butter in a medium saucepan. Heat over medium-low heat, stirring constantly until mixture thickens, about 7-8 minutes. Whisk in butter until smooth.
      2. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly before covering with plastic wrap directly on the surface. Allow to cool completely and chill until ready to use.
      3. When ready to assemble pavlovas, which should be no more than 2 hours in advance, whip heavy cream until stiff. Fold whipped cream into lemon curd and fill meringues generously. Top with fresh blueberries and serve.
      Recipe Notes

      -Using egg whites at room temperature will result in more volume.

      -If unable to use castor or superfine sugar, simply grind regular granulated sugar in a mini coffee grinder for about 10 seconds.  Even this is not true castor sugar, it breaks down the sugar enough for better absorption into the meringue.

      Chocolate Pots de Créme

      Chocolate Pots de Créme
      Print Recipe
        Servings Prep Time
        6 people 30 minutes
        Cook Time Passive Time
        40 minutes 3+ hours
        Servings Prep Time
        6 people 30 minutes
        Cook Time Passive Time
        40 minutes 3+ hours
        Chocolate Pots de Créme
        Print Recipe
          Servings Prep Time
          6 people 30 minutes
          Cook Time Passive Time
          40 minutes 3+ hours
          Servings Prep Time
          6 people 30 minutes
          Cook Time Passive Time
          40 minutes 3+ hours
          Ingredients
          Servings: people
          Instructions
          1. Preheat oven to 325°F.
          2. Combine cream and milk in a medium saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Remove from heat and stir in chocolate. Allow chocolate to sit for a few minutes and then stir until chocolate has melted and the mixture is smooth.
          3. In a medium bowl whisk together egg yolks and sugar. Whisk in an approximate 1/4 cup of the chocolate mixture until combined, repeat with another 1/4 cup and then slowly whisk in the remaining hot mixture. Whisk in espresso powder and salt.
          4. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve and allow to sit for 10 minutes, then skim off any foam on the surface.
          5. Pour evenly among six 3/4 cup ramekins. Arrange ramekins in a 9"x13" baking pan and add enough boiling water to come up the ramekins halfway. Cover entire pan with foil and bake on centre rack for approximately 40 minutes until the edges are set but centers still jiggle when shaken.
          6. Remove from oven and remove custards from pan. Allow to rest for 10-20 minutes and then chill until cold, about 3 hours.
          7. Serve with fresh raspberries and lightly sweetened whipped cream.
          Recipe Notes

          -If you do not use boiling water to start with the cooking time will be longer.

          -You can also use good quality semi-sweet chocolate, however bittersweet results in a richer custard.

          -Do not skip the straining as it ensures a smooth custard.

          -Can be made up to 2 days in advance, covered and chilled.

          Minty Hot Chocolate

          Minty Hot Chocolate with whipped cream in blue mugs resting on a white tray lined with a checkered blue and white napkin.
          Minty Hot Chocolate
          Print Recipe
            Servings Prep Time
            1 litre 10 minutes
            Cook Time
            7 minutes
            Servings Prep Time
            1 litre 10 minutes
            Cook Time
            7 minutes
            Minty Hot Chocolate with whipped cream in blue mugs resting on a white tray lined with a checkered blue and white napkin.
            Minty Hot Chocolate
            Print Recipe
              Servings Prep Time
              1 litre 10 minutes
              Cook Time
              7 minutes
              Servings Prep Time
              1 litre 10 minutes
              Cook Time
              7 minutes
              Ingredients
              Servings: litre
              Instructions
              1. Whip half a cup of heavy cream with the powdered sugar until soft peaks form. Keep chilled until ready to use.
              2. In a small saucepan combine milk, remaining heavy cream, and sugar. Whisk over medium heat until mixture comes to a simmer. Remove from heat and add chocolate. Whisk until chocolate has melted and mixture is smooth. Stir in peppermint extract.
              3. Divide among serving mugs and top with whipped cream and a candy cane.

              Apple Galette with Almond Pastry

              Apple Galette with Almond Pastry
              Print Recipe
                Servings Prep Time
                8 slices 50-60 minutes
                Cook Time Passive Time
                40 minutes 1+ hours
                Servings Prep Time
                8 slices 50-60 minutes
                Cook Time Passive Time
                40 minutes 1+ hours
                Apple Galette with Almond Pastry
                Print Recipe
                  Servings Prep Time
                  8 slices 50-60 minutes
                  Cook Time Passive Time
                  40 minutes 1+ hours
                  Servings Prep Time
                  8 slices 50-60 minutes
                  Cook Time Passive Time
                  40 minutes 1+ hours
                  Ingredients
                  Pastry
                  Filling
                  Servings: slices
                  Instructions
                  Pastry
                  1. In a large bowl combine flour, almond flour, sugar and salt. Cut butter cubes into the dry ingredients using a pastry cutter or a knife until the flour is crumbly with small bits of butter.
                  2. Drizzle water and vinegar over flour mixture and toss with a fork until dough just starts to come together. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and work gently to bring everything together and the dough has smoothed out.
                  3. Roll dough into a ball and then flatten into an approximate 6" disk. Cover with plastic wrap and chill for at least one hour.
                  Apple Filling
                  1. Peel and core apples and then cut them into thin slices. Drizzle slices with the lemon juice as you slice to prevent oxidization.
                  2. To the apples add the sugar, flour, cinnamon and nutmeg. Toss to combine.
                  3. In a small bowl whisk together egg and milk.
                  4. Preheat oven to 375°F.
                  5. On a lightly floured surface roll dough to an approximate 13" circle adding a sprinkle of flour to the top and bottom as you go to prevent it sticking.
                  6. Trim dough to a neat 12" circle by using a plate or pie plate as a guide (see note). Roll dough onto your rolling pin and transfer to a large parchment-lined baking tray.
                  7. Pile filling in the centre and spread out towards the edge leaving a 1 1/2" border of plain dough.
                  8. Fold the dough edge up and over the filling, crimping slightly as you go around. Sprinkle the apples with dots of butter. Brush the pastry with egg wash and sprinkle with coarse sugar if desired. Bake in preheated oven for 40 minutes until the pastry is golden and apples are tender.
                  9. Remove from oven and allow to cool for at least 10 minutes before slicing into wedges and serving with ice cream.
                  Recipe Notes

                  -The pastry does not have to be a perfect circle. If you'd like a nice rustic look you can leave it as you roll it as long as it is an approximate 12"-13" in diameter and 1/8" thick.

                  -If you like a neater look you can also arrange the apple slices in a concentric circle.  I'm partial to piling the apples in as they fall.

                  Graveyard Brownie Bites

                  Graveyard Brownie Bites resting on crumbled cookie dirt scattered with sculls and bones.
                  Graveyard Brownie Bites
                  Print Recipe
                    Servings Prep Time
                    36 mini brownies 60-80 minutes
                    Cook Time Passive Time
                    12 minutes 60 minutes
                    Servings Prep Time
                    36 mini brownies 60-80 minutes
                    Cook Time Passive Time
                    12 minutes 60 minutes
                    Graveyard Brownie Bites resting on crumbled cookie dirt scattered with sculls and bones.
                    Graveyard Brownie Bites
                    Print Recipe
                      Servings Prep Time
                      36 mini brownies 60-80 minutes
                      Cook Time Passive Time
                      12 minutes 60 minutes
                      Servings Prep Time
                      36 mini brownies 60-80 minutes
                      Cook Time Passive Time
                      12 minutes 60 minutes
                      Ingredients
                      Servings: mini brownies
                      Instructions
                      1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
                      2. Prep 36 non-stick mini muffin tin cups by either spraying generously with non-stick spray or greasing and flouring. See note.
                      3. Chop the semi-sweet chocolate and measure out 4 ounces. In a large bowl combine the 4 ounces of chocolate with the butter and microwave at 30-second intervals until melted, stirring often.
                      4. Whisk in the sugar, eggs, and vanilla until fully combined.
                      5. Sift in the flour, cocoa, baking powder, and salt directly into the bowl. Whisk to combine just until the dry ingredients are incorporated.
                      6. Scoop the batter into prepared mini muffin cups using a level 2 tbsp scoop.
                      7. Bake on the centre rack for 12 minutes. Remove to a cooling rack and allow to cool completely in the pan.
                      8. Meanwhile, prepare the tombstones but slicing each cookie wafer into thirds, tapering the bottom slightly inward toward the center piece to create a tombstone shape. Reserve the side pieces that have been cut off.
                      9. Crush reserved cookie wafers that have been cut off the sides to a fine crumb that resembles dirt and set aside.
                      10. Dust each tombstone piece with a small amount of powdered sugar by rubbing the sugar lightly onto the cookie wafer.
                      11. Melt the remaining 3 ounces of chopped chocolate in a small bowl in the microwave using 30 second intervals and stirring often until melted.
                      12. Remove brownie bites from the pan and spread the tops with a small teaspoon of melted chocolate. Immediately sprinkle with crumbled cookie wafers and press lightly to adhere.
                      13. Push a tombstone wafer into each brownie bite, cutting a small slit in the brownie if needed to push in far enough to hold in place.
                      14. Decorate with candy bones, spiders, or worms as desired. Drizzle with red decorating gel to mimic blood. Serve and enjoy!
                      Recipe Notes

                      - I have used both pan preparation methods with similar results.  The key is to allow the brownie bites to cool completely in the pan before trying to remove them.  Loosen the tops from the pan with a sharp knife if necessary. Twist the brownie lightly to loosen and the brownie should pop out.