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Dessert

Plum Strudel with Cinnamon Streusel

Pflaumenstrudel mit Zimtstreuseln

Today I am presenting the German answer to American pies: strudel! Strudel is a very elastic dough, which is rolled up to a log and contains lots and lots of fruit filling. When I served this plum strudel with cinnamon streusel to my guests, I could barely manage to see any of it as it was gone so quickly. Just as pies, this strudel is a “healthier” version of a cake as the ratio of unsweetend dough to lots of fruit filling simply is genious. If you are into fruity cakes and like pies, you will definitely also enjoy strudel, give this beauty a try.

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Suspiro Limeño or Peruvian Caramel Custard with Meringue

Suspiro Limeño peruanischer Karamellpudding mit Baiser

Today I am going to introduce you to suspiro limeño or suspiro de limeña, which is a caramel custard from Peru with delicious meringue on top. This dessert was invented by the wife of the Peruvian poet Jose Galvez who gave it the picturesque name “sigh of a lady from Lima” when she served it to him the first time. The dessert has two components. Number 1 is the custard, which is similar to dulce de leche and number 2 a delicious meringue with a dash of alcohol.  Once you dig into this decadent dessert, I am sure you will understand why he described it as a sigh, it is so creamy, light, and sweet, it simply melts in your mouth. The meringue is almost like marshmallow, there is nothing else you can ask for.

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Apricot Dumplings with Caramelized Bread Crumbs

Marillenknödel mit Topfen

It is high season for apricots and for that reason I was in the mood for something with apricots. These apricot dumplings are an Austrian dessert also very popular in the south of Germany. Since I am a huge lover of apricots, I decided to make these. Unfortunately, I don’t have that many apricot recipes on this blog yet. You may enjoy these apricot turnovers or this delicious apricot tart. Homemade apricot jam is also delicious on this famous Austrian chocolate cake Sachertorte. Needless to say that it was about high time to introduce these apricot dumplings with caramelized bread crumbs on the blog finally. Marillenknödel mit Topfen Continue Reading…

Black Forest Eclairs

Recipes that have a story to tell are my favorite recipes. That’s definitely the case for these black forest eclairs. The reason for me making eclairs after a while again was because a blogger colleague of mine named Julia (her German blog is called Julia bakes) was hospitalized and eager to eat some proper eclairs. Obviously the hospital didn’t provide such a treat so Julia asked if anyone was willing to bake her some. Since I live in the same city and had some time off before starting to work again, I volunteered. Baking eclairs for her reminded me of the fact that my husband is a huge lover of eclairs. For that reason I have been whipping up eclairs more regularly again. These black forest eclairs are definitely one of my favorite flavor combinations.

Schwarzwälder-Kirsch-EclairsI do admit that eclairs take a while, but the good thing is you can prepare the cherry filling in advance. Since these eclairs are based on the famous black forest cake, I added chocolate shavings to the whipped cream. So imagine an eclair filled with lots of delicious cherry filling, topped off with whipped cream and chocolate shavings and then being dipped in chocolate ganache. Sounds like music to my ears.

Schwarzwälder-Kirsch-EclairsChoux pastry, the dough the ecalirs are made with, is not difficult to make. I honestly don’t know why so many people are intimidated by it. If you ask me, I find it easier than working with than yeast. What you should keep in mind when preparing choux pastry? Do NOT open the oven door while they are baking. The eggs need a consistant environment, so don’t be tempted to check and open the door. Just like cheese cake, choux pastry likes a humid environment, so my little trick is to put a container with water on the bottom of the oven. And secondly, you need to be sure to bake them long enough. The outside should be crunchy and the elcairs easy to cut through. That way it will be easier also to hold up all the filling and for them to stay fresh longer.

The ony part that is a little tricky is knowing how many eggs you need to add to the dough. But if you have a glossy dough that is pipepable, you got the right consistency and boy, I can tell you that home-made and from scratch eclairs are simply the best. A light and fluffy dough which is filled with cherries and complemented by whipped cream with chocolate shavings and chocolate ganache, I don’t know what else to ask for. Are you going to give these beauties are try?

Black Forest Eclairs

Serves: Around 16-20 eclairs
Prep Time: 30min Cooking Time: 30-35min

These Black Forest Eclairs have a regular houx pastry, are filled with a super fruity cherry filling and are then topped of with whipping cream with chocolate shavings and some extra chocolate glaze.

Ingredients

  • Eclairs
  • 250 grams of water
  • A pinch of salt
  • 50 grams of butter
  • 150 grams of all-purpose flour
  • 3-5 eggs, size M at room temperature

  • Cherry Filling
  • 1 can of cherries of 800 grams
  • 50 grams of regular sugar
  • 1 tablespoon of lemon juice
  • 25 grams of tapioca starch or cornstarch

  • Whipped Cream
  • 300 grams heavy cream
  • 25 grams of regular sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract, see here how to make your own
  • 100 grams of chocolate shavings

  • Chocolate Ganache
  • 100 grams of heavy cream
  • 100 grams of semi-sweet chocolate

Instructions

1

For the eclairs heat water, salt and butter in a pot and let the butter melt completely. Change temperature to low and add all the flour at once while still stirring. Stir until a ball forms. Be sure to move the ball around for about one or two minutes, there should be a thin white layer on the bottom of the pot. Move dough ball to a bowl and let cool off.

2

Add first egg. Beat in one egg at a time. First the dough will appear crumbly. Depending on the size of the eggs, you will have to beat in between 3-5 eggs. The right consistency is reached if the dough slowly drops off a spoon and looks glossy.

3

Preheat oven to 220 degrees Celsius and place a large ovenproof container with water on the bottom of your oven. Prepare a baking sheet with parchment paper and pipe stripes of about 2 centimeters in width and 12 cm in length on the baking sheet. Leave space between each as they will puff considerably. You can wet your fingers with some water to smooth away any inconsistencies. Bake eclairs on medium rack for 10min, reduce temperature to 180 and bake for another 15-20min. The crust should be a little darker and crunchy. Do NOT open the oven door as otherwise the eclairs will shrink. Cut eclairs in half while still warm.

4

For the cherry filling drain cherries while keeping the juice. Take about have the juice and bring to a boil with sugar and lemon juice. Stir tapioca starch with some water until you see no lumps. Once the juice is boiling, add the tapioca and stir for about one to two minutes, until it become thick. Add the cherries and set aside.

5

For the whipping cream whip the cream with all ingredients except for the chocolate shavings for about four minutes or until stiff. Fold in chocolate shavings.

6

For the chocolate ganache heat the heavy cream, once almost boiling, take off heat and add chocolate in chunks. Stir until chocolate is completely melted.

7

Spoon cherry filling on the bottom of each eclair and either dollop or pipe on the whipped cream. Dunk the top part of the eclair in the chocolate ganache and place on top. Eclairs taste best on the same day they were made. However, you can keep them chilled for a few days in an airtight container.

Notes

Eclairs taste best on the day they were made. If kept chilled in an airtight container, they can be eaten for a few days.

Schwarzwälder-Kirsch-Eclairs

Simple and Delicious Strawberry Shortcakes

Erdbeer-Shortcakes

I recently moved from the north of Germany from Hamburg to the south to Munich and I am impatiently waiting for spring to finally start. It is the end of March almost and I found snowdrops and crocus flowering, not really spring yet if the heralds of spring are only blossoming. The daffodils still need more time. Just this fact made me realize that winters are definitely milder in Hamburg. The nights simply are not as cold and the change in temperature is not as drastic. I mean, I took the picture with the snowdrops you see below in mid-March. Don’t think that would be possible in Hamburg. But regardless if spring is here, we can invite spring to our plate, can’t we? At least I wanted to do that by preparing these simple and delicious strawberry shortcakes. I love the fact that it really doesn’t take a lot of time to make them. Served with whipped cream and some fresh strawberries, let’s have this beautiful dessert!

Schneeglöckchen in MünchenShortcake originates from the UK and was already served in the Middle Ages. It is similar to shortbread as you also make crumbs from flour, sugar, and butter. But here you add buttermilk, not water or an egg, the buttermilk makes this shortcake nice and fluffy. Shortcake is a rather plain type of cake, not really sweet, but that’s when the fruit and the whipping cream come in, shortcake is the perfect companion to fresh strawberries and some sweetened whipping cream!

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The best Canadian Nanaimo Bars

Nanaimo Bars

Have you every heard of Nanaimo bars? These translate to a no-bake bar with a nutty base, which is mixed with graham crackers and melted butter, a vanilla custard in the middle layer, and then topped off with delicious chocolate. I’m telling you, you are going to love this Canadian treat, at least I fell in love with it and I don’t even like coconut that much, but in this nutty base combined with walnuts, it is a dream come true. Ah, just look at this deliciousness!

Nanaimo Bars

I was fortunate enough to spend a gap year in Canada after high school. Don’t ask me why, but Germans LOVE Canada. And there is a lot to love. So much untouched nature, such friendly people, and in general a very wonderful place to be in. Canadians are in general extremely polite and friendly, but if you tell them they are basically the same as Americans, they get offended and will talk about all the differences, such as Tim Hortons (the “Starbuck/Dunkin Donuts” version of Canada), their beloved queen, and, of course, the fact that they have public health insurance.

Be it as it may, conversations you are definitely going to have is about food. Canadians love their food. I don’t think I have ever eaten more salmon than during my gap year in British Columbia, it was sold EVERYWHERE. And the famous maple syrup, yes, I have actually seen Canadian pour it on their bacon, mashed potatos as well as into their coffee. So needless to say that of course I had to try Nanaimo bars. Nanaimo bars are originally from British Columbia, from Victoria Island. The base usually contains coconut flakes, graham crackers and melted butter. Since I live in Germany and pecans are a little harder to find, I went with walnuts, but I believe you can use any nut as a wonderful addition to this mix.

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Mushroom Meringue

Pilze aus Baiser

I have to admit, I love fall, especially if you check the ground of a dark forest, you will find mushrooms, just like the ones I am presenting today. No, I am kidding, you won’t find these mushrooms in the forest, they are actually made from meringue. However, I do find that they do look very much like their original, don’t you think? I am sure these mushrooms are going to be a show-stopper. And the best thing is, they are basically made from two ingredients. You beat egg whites with sugar, which you then pipe into mushroom caps and stems, you glue it all together with chocolate, and then dust them off with cocoa powder, voilá!Pilze aus Baiser Continue Reading…

Colombian Milhojas: Custard Puff Pastry with Whipping Cream

Milhojas aus Kolumbien

Sometimes there are recipes that are particularly dear to me. These milhojas from Colombia are one of those. Reason for posting this recipe is the fact that we managed to eat milhojas when we were in Spain. Among the many delicious things I am still dreaming about are these milhojas. Milhojas consist of puff pastry, which is filled with vanilla custard, whipping cream and dulce de leche. Below you will see a picture of the milhojas we ate in the bakery Panetteria de Tirso in Madrid, Spain:

milhojas aus der pannetteria de Tirso Continue Reading…