Tag Archives: trifle

Recipes! Yummy International Bakes

I’m sorry it’s taken me so long to post these. Seeing them all again, I could certainly go for one of each. Before we begin, I hope to see you all at Thursday night’s gathering at Okanagan Crush Pad. Choose from anything in the baking section from page 20 of the Fall Fair Guide. I think I shall be attempting a peach pie.

  • Meeting time: 6:30, Thursday, August 7
  • Location: 16576 Fosbery Rd
  • RSVP: Please email me to let me know if you are coming, so I can give Mike an idea of numbers. 🙂
  • Carpool: I have extra room if anyone needs a ride.

Onto the recipes! We shall start with Kim’s Rhuberry Tiramisu. I had a photo of the pristine dessert before we dived in, but I preferred the one featuring delicious carnage. As you read Kim’s recipe and wonderful description below, hands up who would like a “From Valentine Farm” Guest blog? When it’s not gardening season, of course!

Rhuberry TiramisuServes 12 (but recipe can easily be halved to a more modest size)

Everyone is familiar with traditional Italian tiramisu – a rich dessert composed of cocoa, espresso, mascarpone cheese, whipping cream, lady fingers and, of course, alcohol. It turns out tiramisu is not that traditional after all, but a rather newish dessert dating back to the 70’s – that would be the 1970’s not the 1870’s.

This recipe borrows from that classic tiramisu. There are layers of cream and liquor soaked ladyfingers but that is where the similarity ends. This tirimsu uses raspberries and rhubarb. I bake my rhubarb rather than stew it. Baking yields perfectly cooked fruit that holds its shape rather than disintegrating into a mess o’ rhubarb. Even if you don’t get as far as making the tiramisu, you can simply serve the deliciously good baked rhubarb and call it dessert. Or breakfast.

Baked Rhubarb

4 cups rhubarb, cut into 1-inch pieces
1⁄4 cup sugar
Grated zest and juice of 1 orange
One vanilla bean, sliced lengthwise and cut in half
3 cloves

Preheat oven to 375°. Combine rhubarb, orange juice and zest in a 9×13 inch baking dish.

Rhubarb should cover bottom of pan in a single layer, more or less. Tuck cloves and vanilla bean in the rhubarb and bake for 30 minutes. Cool. Taste for sweetness.

Rhuberry Tiramisu

Baked rhubarb
4 cups raspberries macerated with 1⁄4 cup sugar and 2 tbsp Cointreau
475-g container mascarpone cheese
Grated zest and juice of 1 orange
1⁄2 cup sugar
1 tbsp vanilla
2 cups whipping cream
1 tbsp sugar
3⁄4 cup orange juice
1⁄4 Cointreau (or other orange flavoured liquor)
2 150-g packages ladyfingers

Place mascarpone and grated orange zest in a large bowl. Stir in 1⁄2 cup sugar and vanilla. In another bowl whip cream with 1 tbsp sugar until soft peaks form when beaters are lifted. Gently stir 1⁄4 of the whipped cream into the mascarpone. Then gently fold in the remaining whipped cream ensuring it is well mixed with no streaks of mascarpone.

Mix orange juice with Cointreau in a shallow dish. Using one half the ladyfingers, dip both sides into the juice mixture and use them to line a 9 x 13-inch baking dish. Spread one half the mascapone mixture over the ladyfingers. Spread baked rhubarb over mascarpone. Dip remaining ladyfingers in orange juice mixture and repeat layering – dipped ladyfingers, mascarpone, raspberries. The raspberries will bleed but I like that look. Refrigerate for a minimum of six hours.

Depending on the size of your dish, you may get some overflow as the tiramisu settles. I have found that a standard 9×13-inch Pyrex baking dish is just a wee bit too small for this recipe.

So, you can either put a cookie sheet under your dish to catch the overflow or, while preparing the layers, just eat some of the mascarpone mixture when no one is looking.

Marina’s Quiche Lorraine

This was so well loved, we all quickly devoured it and there weren’t any leftovers to speak of.

Quiche Lorraine

Preheat oven to 375 F
Prepare a 9 inch pie shell of:

Pate Brisée

  • ½ cup chilled butter
  • 3 Tbsp shortening
  • 1 ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup whole wheat flour
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 5 – 6 Tbs cold water

Turn into soft dough, allow to rest in refrigerate from 2 to 36 hours before preparing the pie shell. Brush the pie shell with the white of an egg and prick it well.

Put together:

  • 2 cups of milk
  • 3-4 eggs
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/8 tsp pepper
  • nutmeg
  • chopped chives and dill

Sprinkle the bottom of the pie shell with:

  • ½ cup of grated cheese
  • pieces of broccoli or spinach

Put the custard mixture over it. Bake 35 to 40 minutes or until the top is golden brown, enjoy!

Lory’s Cherry Clafoutis

Inspired by the simple cherry desserts from the Limousin region of France, this baked custard can be served warm or at room temperature. Feel free to use pitted or unpitted cherries.

Cherry Clafoutis


  • 1 pound fresh cherries, stemmed and pitted, or frozen pitted cherries, thawed, drained
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1⁄4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted
    3/4 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
  • 3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 375°F. Generously butter shallow 1 1/2-quart glass or ceramic baking dish.

Blend all ingredients (except cherries) in blender until smooth. Pour in to baking dish. Arrange cherries in custard.

Bake clafoutis until custard is set and top is golden brown, about 45-55 minutes. Cool slightly then run a knife around pan sides to loosen clafoutis (if using a cake pan). Dust top with powdered sugar; cut into wedges and serve warm.

Vanora’s Gâche Mélée (pronounced in local patois as Gosh May-lah)

This would be sooooo good in the winter with a good cup of tea.

From Vanora: I could not find the traditional recipe from my grandmother, and so what follows is a recipes built from several I found on the web, none of which were exactly what I wanted. The original recipe called for Guernsey butter (Guernsey milk is distinctive in having a different protein, carotene and fat profile than other milks) or suet, neither of which I had on hand. The end result was more of a cross between a pudding and a cake, and wasn’t anything like I remember from childhood!
Gache Melee
Grease a shallow baking tin 7 ins square.
Rub 1/4lb butter or suet into 1/2lb plain flour until like breadcrumbs
Mix in ½ tsp salt, ¼ tsp of nutmeg, ¼ tsp of cinnamon, ¼ tsp of mixed spice (optional).

Peel, core and quarter 1½ lb cooking apples. Drop the quarter pieces into a large bowl with ½ lb demerara sugar. Roughly chop the apples into the sugar (leaving them as quite large chunks) with a sharp knife – the juices will run and be directly absorbed by the sugar.

Stir the apple and sugar mixture into the dry ingredients. Add 1 beaten egg, and mix.
(Add water if necessary if batter is too thick.)
Pour into prepared tin. Level the top and sprinkle with a little more sugar and cinnamon if desired, for a crunchier top.
Bake in preheated oven 350°F for 30-40mins depending on depth of the mixture, until the top is a deep golden brown.

Serve warm with thick cream or ice-cream.
(Note: I actually used a larger baking dish than 7″ and there was enough batter for it still to be quite deep.)

Wendy’s Thüringen Frucht Kuchen

I cheated (We don’t care). I used a boxed cake mix (Still very delicious). Made the cake and then called my German mother-in-law and asked her for a German name (Das ist sehr gut).


So, to the cake mix (I used French Vanilla but any kind will do), I added 3 eggs, 1/3 cup of melted butter, 1 can of chopped peaches drained, I cup of the juice from the peaches, 1/3 cup of sour cream, and raspberries.

Mix cake mix with eggs, butter, sour cream, and juice. Fold in fruit. Pour into a greased bunt pan. Cook at 350 degrees for about 40 minutes. Check if it is done by inserting a knife to see if it comes out clean.

While still warm, pour your favorite Summerland Sweets syrup. I used apricot. Once cooled, drizzle melted cream cheese frosting on top.

CrepesLaura’s Crepes with Raspberry and Rhubarb Sauce

Once again I am annoyed at myself for not capturing a photo of this dessert at the height of awesome, that is, drenched in this amazing sweet-and-tart sauce. So good.

  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 2/3 c. flour
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 c. milk

Throw it all in blender. Let sit for 1/2 hour. Then proceed to cook as crepes. 1/4 c batter into hot, lightly greased 8″ skillet. Cook til underside is lightly browned. Topping: Cook rhubarb and raspberries together with some sugar and cornstarch.

Carmen’s Orangenstabchen (Orange Sticks)

The term “Orange Sticks” does not do justice to these buttery, orangey, chocolatey sticks of goodness. I only got to eat one of these. Perhaps Carmen could be convinced to make them as an additional Good Omens treat. Mmmmmmm?


For the Batter:

  • 300g Softened Butter
  • 150g Powdered Sugar, sifted
  • 1 tsp vanilla bean paste
  • Pinch of Salt
  • Zest of 1 Orange
  • 4 Egg Yolks
  • 300g Flour, Sifted
  • 3 tbsp. Orange Juice

Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Line baking trays with parchment.

In a large bowl, mix butter on high speed with mixer until fluffy. Add the powdered sugar, vanilla, salt, and orange zest until a dough forms. Slowly add egg yolks. On the slow setting of the mixer alternate adding the orange juice with the flour until all combined. Scraping down the sides of the bowl with a spatula when necessary.

Scrape the batter into a large piping bag fitted with a large star tip. (About 1/2 inch size, not the regular small ones) Could also use a cookie press if you have for a different form. With the piping bag, pipe 6cm long strips onto the baking tray. Leave a 1/2 inch between each cookie. One the tray is full, bake for 8-10 minutes, until lightly browned. Continue with the rest of the batter.

Once cookies are baked and cooled, sandwich Nutella between each pair of cookies. Refrigerate for a few minutes to harden. Melt some chocolate and then dip the ends of the sandwiched cookies in the chocolate. Place back on the parchment covered trays and refrigerate until harden.

Chantelle’s and Jennifer’s Dutch Speculaas Cookies

This goes to show that even when two bakers bake using the same recipe, the bakes won’t turn out the same, changed as they are by the bakers’ creativity. Chantelle opted for the more traditional looking Speculaas (also sometimes spelled Speculoos, otherwise known as Dutch Windmill or Biscoff cookies), while Jennifer, diving into the “bakes from abroad” theme, decided to create a “bake of broads.” They’re little ladies- get it!? Ha! Either way, they were delicious and wonderful with a cup of tea (which is how I consumed the leftovers I had snagged).

Dutch Windmill Cookiesbakes of broads

  • Ingredients
    1/2 cup (1 stick or 113 g) cold unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons (75 g) white granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup (165 g) packed dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground white pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 3/4 cup (235 g) all purpose flour

Special equipment
Baking sheet
Parchment paper or silpat
Stand mixer
Rolling pin
Springerle rolling pin, speculaas mold, cookie cutters or sharp knife

1. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper of a silpat.

2. Cut the butter into 1/2 inch cubes. Place in the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Add the sugars, baking soda, salt, and spices. Cream butter and dry ingredients together on medium speed for 30 seconds or until the batter is uniform in color. Scrape down the sides with a large spatula and add the vanilla extract and egg and beat on medium speed until incorporated (about 30 more seconds). Scrape down the sides again and add the flour. Beat on medium speed until incorporated (about 30 more seconds)

3. Split the cookie dough in half. If you using the springerle rolling pin, roll the dough out until 1/2 inch thick with a plain rolling pin. Liberally dust the springerle pin with flour then roll over the dough, pressing firmly to make a 1/4 inch thick cookie dough, with imprint. Cut the dough along the springerle grid lines with a sharp knife or pizza cutter and place on the baking sheet. If using a traditional speculaas cookie mold, roll the dough until 1/2 thick with a plain rolling pin. Lightly spray the mold with cooking oil, then liberally dust with all purpose flour (knocking out any loose flour once you’ve dusted it). Press the dough into the mold, remove excess dough of the back of the mold and then carefully unmold it onto the baking sheet. If using a cookie cutter, roll the dough out until 1/4 inch thick with a plain rolling pin and cut out cookies and place on the baking sheet.

4. Place the baking sheet in the refrigerator for 30 minutes. 10 minutes before the time is up, preheat the oven to 375˚F. Bake the cookies in the oven 9-11 minutes or until the cookies look golden brown on the edges. Let cool on the baking sheet for 10 minutes before moving the cookies to a wire rack to cool to room temperature. The cookies will harden as they cool.

Summer_TrifleGerri’s Summer Trifle

Look at this monster of a trifle (click for bigger version). Oh, someone give me a spoon.

From Gerri: A trifle can be with anything – basically cake of some kind – I used pound cake and lemon loaf, soaked overnight in Limoncello or you could use Cointreau, brandy or your favourite liqueur. I made an egg custard in a double boiler with 1 cup milk, 1 cup whipping cream, 1 cup sugar, pinch of salt, 2 vanilla pods, split open and all this over boiling water until hot but NOT boiling. Meanwhile, beat the egg yolks until pale yellow, slowly pour in 1 cup of the hot mixture into the yolks, stirring vigorously all the while and then return egg & milk mixture to the pot, continue to cook about 15 minutes until mixture starts to thicken – but do not allow to boil or it will curdle. When mixture coats the back of a spoon, cool on counter and then in fridge until cold.

Whip 1 cup cream, start with cake layer, add fruit in next layer, layer of custard, a layer of whipped cream and then start over with the cake, etc and then whip another 2 cups of whipping cream with sugar and vanilla to pile on top.

Dorthea’s Vichyssoise

When surrounded by so much sweet stuff, it is a treat to dip into something savoury and fresh like this. From “Mama Never Cooked Like This” by Susan Mendelson, founder of The Lazy Gourmet.


— Basic Onion – Potato Stock —

  • 3 potatoes, peeled and chopped
  • 1-1/2 cups onion, chipped
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 tsp salt

Puree potato and onion in a blender, then add to salted water and simmer for 45 minutes.
(Dorthea’s note: I put the chopped onion and potato in boiling water and cook for 1/2 hour, then use an immersion blender to puree the stock, then let it cook for another 15 minutes or so. I also add a bit more salt.)
The Vichyssoise:

  • 4 leeks, chopped
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 3 tbsp butter
  • 4 cups basic onion-potato stock
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cup light cream
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • chives

(Dorthea’s note: I have successfully used almond milk instead of milk, and nonfat or lowfat yogurt instead of the light cream and the heavy cream.)

Saute the leeks and onion in butter until soft. Add 4 cups of onion-potato stock, milk, and light cream, and mix thoroughly with a whisk. Refrigerate until cool.

Before serving, add heavy cream and garnish with chives.

Christine’s Apricot Platz

(Apparently the blueberry version of this is even more glorious).

From my grandma Anna Braun Regehr who probably got it from her grandma 🙂

apricot platzCake Base

  • 1/2 cup softened butter
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 & 3/4 cup flour
  • 2.5 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup sour milk (soured with vinegar) or buttermilk


  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup butter

For cake base: beat butter and sugar till combined, beat in eggs. Combine dry ingredients in a small bowl and stir them into the batter alternating with the milk till combined. Spread in a 10×15 inch pan. (You can also use 9×13 – cake will just be a bit deeper!)

Top with fruit – single layer fairly close together – for apricot I used about a dozen smaller apricots which I sliced in quarters. Any kind of fruit works – apples, blueberries, plums, peaches, rhubarb if you like it tart, or mixed fruit.

For topping combine flour and sugar, mix in butter till crumbly. I use a mini food processor for this. Sprinkle over the fruit.
Bake 350 for about 30 – 35 min. Top should be golden and cake baked through.

If the top doesn’t seem to be browning well, I’ll give it a moment under the broiler at the end as my oven is very slow. If you used a 9×13 leave it a bit longer or check with a toothpick to make sure cake is baked through.

Platz is best served the day it is baked as the sugar topping will be crunchier. The next day is still good but the topping will not be crispy anymore.

Sandra’s Danish Rice Pudding with Raspberry Currant Sauce
If you want to be very traditional, insert a whole almond in the pudding and award a prize to the lucky recipient.

Danish Rice Pudding

Ingredients (serves 8)

  • ½ cup sugar
  • ½ cup water
  • 2 envelopes unflavoured gelatin
  • ½ teaspoon milk
  • 1 ½ cups cooked rice
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 cup chilled whipping cream

Heat sugar, water, gelatin and salt in 2-quart saucepan, stirring constantly, until gelatin is dissolved, about 1 minute. Stir in milk, rice, and vanilla. Place saucepan in a bowl of iced water, stirring occasionally, until mixture mounds slightly when dropped from a spoon, about 15 minutes.

Beat whipping cream in a chilled bowl until still. Fold whipped cream into a rice mixture. Pour into ungreased 1 ½-quart mould. Cover and refrigerate until firm, about 3 hours. Unmold and serve with Raspberry Currant Sauce.

Raspberry Currant Sauce

  • 1 package (10 ounces) frozen raspberries, thawed.
  • ½ cup currant jelly
  • 1 ½ teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1 Tbsp cold water

Heat raspberries (with syrup) and jelly to boiling Mix water and cornstarch, stir into raspberries. Heat to boiling, stirring constantly. Boil and stir 1 minute. Cool. Press through a sieve to remove seeds if desired.

Olive Oil Cake with ApricotsSophia’s Olive Oil and Moscato Cake with Apricots

This is a Middle Eastern recipe is from Crazy Water Pickled Lemons by Diana Henry.

I was really pleased with this recipe – the cake is light and the syrupy apricots make it all the better.

You just have to be careful not to over bake the apricots. Trust me on that one.


  • 5 eggs
  • 3 ½ oz superfine sugar
  • 5 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 5/8 cup Moscato or another dessert wine
  • 3 ½ oz all-purpose flour, sifted
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 2 egg whites
  • ½ tsp cream of tartar
  • Icing sugar for sifting

For the Apricots

  • 20 large apricots
  • 1 5/8 cups white wine
  • 1 vanilla pod, or 1 ½ tsp good vanilla extract
  • 6 oz superfine sugar

1. Butter an eight-inch spring form cake pan and line the base with baking parchment. Separate the eggs and beat the yolks together with half the sugar until pale and thick. Add the olive oil and the Moscato. Fold in flour and salt.

2. Beat the rest of the sugar with all the egg whites and the cream of tartar until they hold medium peaks. Fold into the egg and flour mixture and pour into the cake pan. Bake in an oven preheated to 350 F for 20 minutes, then turn down to 300F and bake for another 30 minutes. Turn off the oven, cover the cake with a circle of buttered paper, and leave it in the oven for a further 10 minutes. Remove and let the cake cool in its pan.

3. Halve the apricots and remove the stone. Put them in a single layer, skin-side up, in overlapping circles, in an ovenproof dish. Pour on the wine. Slit the vanilla pod along it’s length, scrape out the seeds and add these to the wine, along with the pod.

4. Spoon the sugar over the top and bake in an oven preheated to 350F for 20 minutes. The apricots should be soft and slightly caramelized on top.

5. Sift some icing sugar over the cake and serve with the apricots, either chilled or at room temperature, with cream or mascarpone on the side.

Lisa’s Gougères (cheese puffs)

I didn’t get a chance to try one of these, and I’ve been filled with dismay and regret ever since. The recipe is called “Gougères Françoise Potel” and is found  in Bistro Cooking by Patricia Wells: 200 Recipes Inspired by the Small Family Restaurants of France.

I love the description at the start of the recipe:

Françoise Potel is a lively and energetic Burgundian lady, who along with her intense and serious husband, Gérard, makes a lovely, voluptuous, Volnay wine. Each time I’ve visited their lovely estate, she’s offered warm-from-the-oven cheese puffs. These are great appetizers and go especially well with the red Burgundian wines. 

cheese buns


  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 pound (4 oz.; 120g) unsalted butter, chilled and cut into small pieces
  • 1 cup minus 1 1/2 tablespoons (130g) unbleached all-purpose flour, sifted
  • 4 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup (2 oz.; 60 g) freshly grated imported French or Swiss Gruyere cheese

Combine salt, butter and 1 cup (25cl) of water in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil over high heat, stirring all the while with a wooden spoon.

Quickly remove the pan from the heat and add all of the flour at once. Beat vigorously with a large wooden spoon to create a smooth dough. Reheat for 1 minute over medium heat, stirring all the time, to allow the dough to dry out just a bit.

Quickly transfer the dough to the bowl of an electic mixer. Add all of the eggs and half of the grated cheese and beat at medium speed until the eggs and cheese are thoroughly incorporated into the dough. The dough should still be warm.

Preheat oven to 425 F (220 C).

Spoon the dough into a pastry bag fitted with a 1/2 inch (1.5cm) tube. Depending upon the size of your pastry bag, this may have to be done in 2 batches. Squeeze into round 2-inch

Jean’s Cranachan Trifle

I did get to dig into Jean’s Scottish Cranachan Trifle, which I piled on a homemade oatcake. You have to pace yourself with oatcakes – you’ll be nibbling away and suddenly BAM! you’re so full you can’t move.

From Jean: I don’t have a recipe as such. Cranachan is usually put into individual glasses, but I made it as a trifle because it was easier to move. Toast a handful of oats (I used regular ones) in a frying pan carefully until you can smell them. Whip a couple of cups of whipping cream to which you add about 3/4 of the toasted oatmeal, a good splash of scotch, a bit of honey and a couple of handfuls of fresh raspberries. Layer with more raspberries on the bottom, top with the whipped cream mixture and sprinkle with remaining toasted oatmeal. Decorate with additional raspberries and a sprig of mint. I had no measurements – just went with what looked good!

If you aren’t confident enough to wing it à la Jean, BBC Goodfood also has a good Cranachan Trifle recipe worth trying.

Scottish Crannachan


And that’s what we ate in July. Whew!


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Filed under cookies, Recipes

Irish meetup recipes, and a new event!

I hope everyone has recovered from the sugar rush following our most excellent Irish-themed meetup last month. Now, are you all ready to do it again?

Summerland Baker’s Special Event: Baking with Ancient Grains

  • Where: True Grain Bread, 10108 Main Street
  • When: Thursday, April 24th, 6:30pm
  • What: This is your chance to try something new with one or more of the many incredible ancient grains out there. True Grain carries varieties like organic spelt and emmer flour. True Grain is one of the only bakeries in BC to mill their own flour on site, and we’ll learn about where they source their grain and also see the mill in action!
  • Reserve your place! There is a lot of interest for this event – please email me to confirm your spot on the 24th.

On with the Irish Recipes!

Irish cream bundt cake

Christine’s Irish Cream Bundt Cake

This kind of drizzle that combines Baileys and butter should be invited to all parties everywhere.


Baileys Trifle
Jennifer’s Bailey’s Trifle
First, the cake: Black Bean Chocolate Cake – Flourless and Gluten Free!

Notes from Jennifer: For the trifle assemblage I just made pudding with half milk, half Baileys. Layered with cake bits, then Whipping cream on top sprinkled with shaved chocolate.

Irish Soda Bread

Lisa’s Irish Soda Bread

Lisa says this recipe was very easy to make, which is encouraging, since it was so delicious, especially with Lisa’s own homemade peach jam. The recipe even comes with a video for extra encouragement!

Chocolate Guinness Cake

Sophia’s Chocolate Guinness Cake

My friend Paula’s sister makes her a chocolate Guinness cake every year for her birthday and I always wanted to try one. I shouldn’t have made it into layers though – it is supposed to just be a single cake with the cream cheese icing, in order to look like a pint of Guinness. Oh well – it is still lovely and moist. Thanks Nigella for this recipe.
Irish proverbs and cupcakes

Heritage cupcakesGerri’s Heritage Cupcakes
Gerri is a baker with flair. Not only is the recipe one that she has been making since she was small, but we all loved the addition of the wee Irish proverbs, including “Never bolt your door with a cooked carrot,” and “If you want praise, die. If you want blame, marry.”

From Gerri: You can tell it’s from the ‘50’s as it has jello in it!!!

Grease two 8” layer tins and heat oven to 350F
½ cup butter
1 cup sugar
1 3 oz package lime jello powder
Beat well in 2 eggs

Add 1 tablespoon lime zest
Combine 2 ¼ cups flour with 2 ½ tsp baking powder & 1 tsp salt
Add alternately to the butter/egg mixture with 1 cup + 2 tablespoons milk
Put in layer pans or in cupcake holders
Bake until cake taster comes out clean

Make a paste with 5 tablespoons flour and 1 cup of milk
Beat lumps out until smooth and cook over med heat until mixture is “boiling” (it will be very thick but make sure flour is well cooked so there is no taste of flour left)

After it is cooked, dump the paste in a piece of plastic wrap, wrap up tightly and chill in fridge until cold all the way through – very important. I usually leave it overnight.

Cream 1 cup butter with
1 cup icing sugar
1 3 oz pkg of lime jello powder
1 tsp lime zest

Beat until very smooth with an electric mixer and then add the paste mixture from the fridge slowly so it incorporates well and is smooth. Beat all until light and fluffy.

Mint MacaronsJean’s Irish (Mint) Macarons

Jean gets a gold baking star for her tenacity in the face of the terrible trio: a difficult recipe, a broken oven and a rain storm. Since making these, Jean reports another success with coffee-flavoured cookies with a mocha filling, made for a friend who was under the weather. Nom!

1 1/4c. almond meal
1 3/4c. icing sugar
Combine these in a food processor and sift out any larger lumps.
4 large egg whites (I used commercial egg whites)
1/2c. granulated sugar
1/2 t. cream of tartar
1/8 t. peppermint extract
Green food colour

Whip the egg whites ,sugar, cream of tartar until soft peaks. Adding the sugar gradually. Add extract and food colour and whip to very stiff peaks.

Fold the almond mixture into the egg whites-folding no more than 40 times. Pipe onto parchment paper in circles about 1-1 1/2 inches.(I drew circles on the underside of the parchment to use as templates) ((I used my piping bag with no attachment to get a nice smooth circle)) Bang the cookie sheets on the counter a couple of times-this breaks any air bubbles inside the cookies.

NOW VERY IMPORTANT: allow the cookies to rest on the counter for at least 20 minutes-can be more if you’re doing multiple sheets. Bake in an oven 300′ for 20 minutes( turn the sheet 1/2 way through) Cool on a wire rack about 5-10 minutes and then lift off. They will keep for several days in an airtight container or freeze for later use.

Ganache Filling:
200g. semi-sweet chocolate
100g. heavy cream.
Heat the cream to light simmer and pour over chocolate to melt it. Let sit on the counter to cool. Spoon filling on the bottom of one cookie and top with a second cookie. (I didn’t put any flavouring in ganache)

Irish Curd Pie with Sour Cherry JellyKim’s Irish Curd Tart

I loved this, served with homemade sour cherry jelly. The tart reminded me of my great-grandmother’s cheesecake, which was made with quark. Similar texture and light flavour. Comfort food and great with a cup of strong tea.

From Kim: This is an old Gaelic recipe. It looks like there are lot of steps but not really.

I made the crust one day and completed the pie the next day. I found pressed cottage cheese, made in Grand Forks, at Quality Greens in Penticton. This is a nice light “cheese” cake.

Pie Crust
1 ¼ cups flour
1 tablespoon sugar
½ teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons cold, unsalted butter cut into small chunks
about ¼ cup cold water

2 cups pressed cottage cheese
¼ cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
¼ teaspoon salt if the pressed cheese is unsalted (mine was)
1 whole lemon, zested
3 large eggs, separated

1 large egg, beaten
1 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted
1 tablespoon sugar
2 tablespoons flour

Pie Crust: Mix together flour, sugar and salt. Cut in butter with your fingertips. Add 3 tablespoons of cold water. Stir to moisten – you may have to add more water. Knead briefly on a lightly floured surface. Shape into a flat disk, slip into a plastic bag and refrigerate while you make the filling.

Filling: Separate eggs and beat the egg whites until fairly stiff. By hand, beat together cottage cheese, sugar, butter, salt and lemon zest. Stir in egg yolks. Fold in egg whites.

On a lightly floured surface, roll out pastry to a 10 inch round and lay it in tart pan and do whatever you do to crimp the edges. Brush pastry shell with beaten egg and refrigerate. Melt butter for topping. Mix remaining beaten egg with melted butter, sugar and flour.

Pour filling into pastry shell. Don’t worry if it seems pretty full – it doesn’t rise much. Starting in the centre of the tart, pour topping in a spiralling circle moving outward to the edge of the shell. Don’t worry if the topping doesn’t reach the edge. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes until golden. Cool. Serve with fresh fruit or fruit preserves.

Jan’s Irish Cream Bread and Butter Pudding Irish Cream Bread and Butter Pudding

Does anything sound more comforting on a cold night than this? This recipe comes all the way from Jan’s cousin in Ireland!

Have slices of bread buttered place buttered side downwards in a pyrex dish, sprinkle currents & raisins or one of them over the bread.

Then place another layer of buttered bread over the fruit buttered side up again a layer of dried fruit followed by a layer of buttered bread buttered side up. Depending on size of dish this should be sufficient.

Now beat two eggs and add hot milk to eggs, add sugar and pour this over the bread. It should be nice and moist. Place dish in hot oven and bake it comes out golden brown. Serve with Custard

Irish Night

Laura’s Current Squares

Three cheers for Laura for heading straight to her kitchen to bake even though she had just returned home from California. She whipped this together using simple ingredients, proving that a stubborn baker will drag deliciousness out from wherever it is hiding, no matter the circumstances.  Unfortunately I was so excited with all the cake arriving, I didn’t get a proper close-up! But you can see them on the left side of the above photo.

Apparently these are also sometimes called “Fly graveyards.” Luckily, they don’t taste like it! Click here for the recipe.


Jan’s Potato Biscuits (Fadge)
Jan brought some Roger’s Syrup as a sweetener for these, but I loved them just as they are. Potatoes are awesome, and these Moorish little biscuits prove it.

1 cup mashed potato
3 tablespoons melted butter
1 egg
1 cup flour
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon of baking powder
Mix well. Pat down to ½ inch. Cut with small glass. Bake 400 F til golden.

Jan’s notes: This is a good way to use leftover mashed potatoes, but I used (4 or 5) boiled, peeled potatoes and added a fourth tablespoon of butter. I put everything in the food processor, progressively mixing in the order listed above. I also used a gluten free flour mixture to keep the biscuits celiac friendly. Serve sweet or savory.

Chocolate grasshopper cheesecake

Chantelle’s Chocolate Grasshopper Cheesecake

Apparently, a dangerous part of making this cheesecake is that the crust does not require the entire box of cookies, and so it is necessary to “assist” the process of emptying the packet while the cake is baking. Your secret is safe with us, Chantelle. Oh, wait – this is a public blog. Oops.

30 fudge mint cookies, crushed (about 1 3/4 cups)
2 tablespoons butter or margarine, melted

4 oz semisweet baking chocolate
3 packages (8 oz each) cream cheese, softened
1 cup sugar
4 eggs
1/3 cup green crème de menthe liqueur*
Topping and Garnish, if desired

Sweetened whipped cream
Crème de menthe thin rectangular candies for garnish, unwrapped, cut in half diagonally


  1. Heat oven to 300°F. Wrap foil around bottom and side of ungreased 9-inch springform pan. In large bowl, mix crust ingredients with fork until crumbly. Press in bottom and 1 inch up side of pan. Bake 12 minutes. Cool 30 minutes.
  2. In small microwavable bowl, microwave chocolate on High 45 to 60 seconds, stirring once halfway through microwaving, until melted. If necessary, continue to microwave on High in 15-second increments, stirring until smooth. Set aside.
  3. In large bowl, beat cream cheese and sugar with electric mixer on medium speed, scraping bowl frequently, until smooth and creamy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating until smooth after each addition. Stir in liqueur. Pour filling evenly over crust.
  4. Drop 8 to 10 tablespoonfuls melted chocolate randomly onto filling, allowing chocolate to sink into filling. With table knife or small spatula, cut through chocolate and filling to swirl for marbled design.
  5. Bake 1 hour 10 minutes to 1 hour 20 minutes or until set 2 inches from edge of pan. Remove from oven; run knife around side of cheesecake to loosen. Return to oven; turn oven off and open door slightly. Cool cheesecake in oven 1 hour. Remove from oven to cooling rack; cool at room temperature 1 hour. Refrigerate 3 hours.
  6. To serve, remove side of pan. Spoon whipped cream into decorating bag with large star tip; squeeze bag to pipe cream around top edge of cheesecake. Garnish with candies.

*One teaspoon peppermint extract and 4 to 6 drops green food color can be substituted for the crème de menthe liqueur.
*This decadent dessert is the perfect do-ahead because it needs to be chilled at least 3 hours before serving.
*For easy cutting, dip your knife into hot water.

Irish Tea Cake
Both Wendy and Leah made traditional Irish Tea Cakes, but they were both slightly different. Here is the recipe for Leah’s.Leahs irish tea cake

Leah’s Irish Tea Cake

Wendy's Irish Tea Cake

Wendy’s Irish Tea Cake


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