blueberry tarts

its all about flavour for me, I guess all those years of being a chef has made
me  a slave to it, as well as texture,
and taste, and aroma ….I go on. But what’s this no sugar thing? I can’t do that,
although I wanted to give an alternative a go .Last week on a photo shoot for a
web based client, she used an unprocessed sugar, called panela…. so I thought
I would give it a run!

wanted to re create a Portuguese tart and use fresh fruit along with the panela.
It worked a treat!

doubled decked the pastry and sprinkled it with panela and my favourite type of
sweet spice -cinnamon. ( I once wanted to name my first born cinnamon! ) The colour
of the panela is almost coffee like and the flavour has a caramel edge.  Doubling the pastry and hiding the sweet &
spice in between the layers really gives a flavour boost to these little
beauties.  Its just a quick roll out, to
make the layers a little thinner. If you don’t own a rolling pin, a smooth
bottle will do.

reckon you could substitute your favourite fruit in here no problem. Cook them
slowly at 170 degrees that way there’s lots of custard. Definitely eat these while
they are hot straight out of the oven. Enjoy with a coffee I think, and hey
they have blueberries, eggs and dairy in them, could almost past them off as breakfast!




time 15 minutes

time 20-25 minutes


oil spray

2 sheets
frozen  puff pastry, thawed

tsp cinnamon powder

Tbsps panela sugar, plus 1/3 cup panela sugar extra

egg yolks

1 egg

Tbsp cornflour

vanilla bean, scraped

pure cream ( the runny one ) 

punnet blueberries


Preheat oven to 170 C. Spray x 12 hole 1/3 cup capacity muffin tin with cooking
oil spray.

Lay one sheet of the pastry on a clean work surface and sprinkle with combined
cinnamon and sugar, place remaining sheet on top.


a rolling pin, lightly dusted in flour, roll out pastry to till the size approx 30 cm x 30 cm. Or about 2-3 mm thick.

Using a 10 cm cookie cutter, cut 9 circles out, and gently ease into tin.  Re roll scraps and cut 3  more circles out.Gently ease into prepared tin.  Refrigerate while you make the custard.

4 In
a bowl place eggs, extra sugar, corn flour, vanilla bean and pour in cream,
whisk to combine.To make it easier and avoid the mess, transfer
the mixture into a jug,then
divide evenly  into each pastry case. 

5 Sprinkle
with blueberries and cook for 20-25 minutes till custard is set and they go all
puffed and golden on top. Depending on your oven you may need a little longer,
give them a little shake, or lightly
press your fingers into the centre at around the 20 minute mark.
Continue cooking them if the middle is a little soft still.


Dust with icing sugar to serve

smoked salmon with capers & lime

This is the quickest party plate you will ever make- its take 10 minutes and your done !  Next time your asked to bring a plate make this your go to one.

serves 4-6  prep time 10 minutes 

400g smoked salmon

1 small eschallot, finely chopped

1 Tbsp baby capers

2 snips micro herbs

sea salt & cracker pepper

1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil 

½ cup sour cream

2 tsp horseradish cream

1 tsp Dijon mustard

 1 lime cut into cheeks to serve ( don’t throw the middle away ) 

 crusty bread to serve 

1 Place salmon in one layer on a large flat platter. ( I like to cut out the blood line, cause it doesn’t look that pretty, plus I don’t want to eat it !  ) Sprinkle with eschallot,capers,micro herbs salt & pepper and olive oil.  

2 Combine sour cream with horseradish cream and Dijon mustard. Squeeze the  middle of the lime over the salmon just before serving. Serve with slices of crusty bread and lime cheeks.

3 Slice a rustic bread stick and place on a tray lined with baking paper  in the oven on 180c. for 8-10 minutes till crisp and lightly golden . Drizzle with olive oil and serve with salmon. 

This is also delicious with dill sprigs if you don’t have micro herbs or cant find any.  

white chocolate cheesecake

Cheesecake is one of my loves and this baked cheese cake is my all time favourite, its defiantly not one to have every day, but special occasions or entertaining calls for something as spectacular as this. Its got a slight tang from the sour cream, which only helps to cut through the beautifully creamy and velvety texture that is the middle of this cheesecake. Its best served at room temperature, and maybe a few berries in season to top it off.

 white chocolate cheesecake-

prep time- 20 minutes

cooking time- 1 hour 5 minutes

serves- 12


12 granita biscuits, broken  ( or any other sweet biscuit )

60g butter, melted

2 x 250g cream cheese, softened

¾ cup caster sugar

250g sour cream

1tsp Vanilla bean paste ( or vanilla extract )

2 eggs

300ml thickened cream,  lightly whipped

100g white chocolate, melted

pine nut praline-

1 cup caster sugar

100g pinenuts

1 Preheat oven to 160c or 140c fan forced. Grease and line the base of a 20 cm spring
form tin with baking paper. In a food processor blitz biscuits till a fine
crumb, add butter and pulse till they come together. Press into prepared tin.

2 Wash processor and combine cream cheese, sugar and beat till smooth, add sour cream, vanilla, and eggs and process till just combined. Spoon into prepared case and
bake for 45-50 minutes till still slightly wobbly. Top the cheesecake with
whipped cream and drizzle with melted chocolate.

3 Line an oven tray with baking paper and lay pine nuts in a single layer.  Heat sugar and ¼ cup water in a small saucepan over medium high heat for 10-12 minutes till bubbling. Reduce heat and simmer for a further 5 minutes or till golden in colour. Once the desired colour has been achieved removed from heat and gently and slowly pour over the pine nuts in an even fashion, covering all the nuts, allow to cool completely. Crush the pine nut praline and sprinkle over the cheesecake.

 sizzle tip- If you don’t have a food processor, simply put the biscuits in a thick plastic bag and crush with a rolling pin.For the cream cheese mixture, beat with electric hand beaters, or a  kitchen top mix master.

sizzle save – The pine nut praline will keep in an airtight container up to a week. Use as a topping for pavlovas, muffins, fruit salads, ice cream, anything for some extra