Show Stopper Summer Desserts

This week we bring you ultimate summer show stopper summer desserts followed by this season’s finest wines and spritzers to accompany them. Delight your guests this summer with mouth-watering lemon and blueberry cake, indulgent chocolate and raspberry cake and fresh summer fruit pavlova, all of which promise to be a firm favourite this season. We then explore four of the most refreshing wines and spritzers available this summer, including refreshing red sangria, summer citrus spritzer, Californian pinot grigio and New Zealand sauvignon blanc.

Lemon and Blueberry Cake
Time: 1hr 30 minutes
Serves: 10

Ingredients
75g melted butter
200g caster sugar
1 squeezed lemon
2 eggs
200g plain flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
Half a tsp of salt
120ml milk
2tbsp lemon zest
150g fresh blueberries
2tbsp lemon juice
4tbsp caster sugar

Method
Heat oven to 180C. Then grease and flour a loaf tin.

In a medium bowl mix flour, baking powder and salt then set aside.

In a large bowl cream together the butter and 200g of sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs and beat well before stirring in the juice of 1 lemon. Add the flour mixture and milk bit by bit swapping one for the other. Fold in the zest of 1 lemon and blueberries and pour into the loaf tin.

Bake for approximately 60-70 minutes until cooked through. You can test this by inserting a skewer through the cake and it should come our clean.

For the drizzle, mix 4tbsp of sugar with 2tbsp lemon juice and pour evenly over the cake while it is still warm. Serve with fresh single cream.

Chocolate and Raspberry Cake
Serves: 10
Time; 1hr 20 minutes

Ingredients
225g unsalted softened butter + extra for greasing
250ml semi skimmed milk
2tsp vanilla extract
50g cocoa powder
100g soft dark brown sugar
225g caster sugar
3 free range eggs
300g self-raising flour
1tsp baking powder
1tsp bicarbonate of soda

Icing and Filing
100g soft cream cheese
25g unsalted butter
1tsp vanilla extract
200g icing sugar
150g fresh raspberries
3 heaped tbsp. raspberry conserve
100g melted dark chocolate

Method
Heat the oven to 160C. Grease the base of a deep 20-cm cake tin with butter. Cut a circle of greaseproof paper and line the bottom of the tin.

Warm the milk and vanilla extract in a saucepan until hot (without letting it boil) and add the cocoa powder and brown sugar and mix until dissolved.

Beat the butter and caster sugar, then mix in the eggs and some of the flour. Sieve the rest of the flour, baking powder and bicarbonate of soda and mix. Stir the flour mixture in wth the milk, pour into the tin and back for 50 minutes.

Leave the cake until almost cooled, then tip out onto a cooling rack. When completely cooled, cut the cake in half through the middle, so you are left with two discs the same shape and size.

Then make the icing by beating the soft cheese, butter and vanilla extract, then gradually adding enough icing sugar to make a thick and creamy consistency.

Spoon half the icing onto the bottom cake half and scatter over half the fresh raspberries. Spread the conserve over the base of the top half and sandwich the two halves together. Top the cake with the rest fo the icing and raspberries then drizzle over the melted chocolate with a drizzle bottle so to give a marbled effect over the top down the sides of the cake. Then place in the fridge and place of a decorative place or stand to serve.

Summer Fruit Pavlova
Bursting with fresh summer berries and cream, this is the ultimate summer show-stopper dessert for that extra wow factor.

Ingredients
Meringue
6 large free range egg whites
300g caster sugar
Pinch of sea salt

Filling
400g fresh summer berries
200ml double cream
200ml natural yoghurt
2tbs caster sugar
1 vanilla pod, deseeded
2 springs of fresh mint leave

Method
Heat oven to 150C. Put the eggs whites into a large clean down and whisk at medium speed until firm peaks begin to form.

Gradually add sugar and a pinch of salt and then turn the mixer up to the highest setting and whisk for a further 7-8 minutes until the meringue is a smooth, white and glossy consistency. Please note do not over whisk or the meringue will collapse.

Line tow baking trays with baking paper and divide the mixture between them so they are evenly distributed. With a spatula, carefully spread the mixture to into a circle about 20cm in diameter. Place both trays in the oven and bake for 1 hour until meringues appear fluffy in the middle and slightly golden.

Halve or quarter the large strawberries and leave the smaller ones whole so that they are all roughly equal in size. Mix them with the raspberries, blueberries and any other summer berries desired.

Whip the cream with sugar until it forms soft peaks, then stir in the yoghurt and fold in the vanilla seeds, Spoon half the cream on top of the meringue halves and smooth over evenly. Sprinkle half od the berries over the cream. Ten places the other half on top and gently press it down to sandwich them together.

Spread the remaining cream over the top and sprinkle with the remaining berries, followed by scattered fresh mint leaves. Enjoy!

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