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Thirty-One Days of Tuesdays

I love May. It is a time of peace, when spring is in full bloom and summer is just around the corner — a perfect time for chefs to create and be inspired.

Fresh Fruit Pavlova
6 egg whites
250g caster sugar
2 teaspoons corn flour
1 teaspoon white vinegar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Whipped cream for garnishing
Fresh fruits (bananas, passion fruit, strawberries etc.)

  • Preheat oven to 120°C and line an oven tray with foil. 
  •  Brush this with oil and dust with corn flour, shaking off excess. Mark a 20cm diameter circle on foil.
    In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a whisk,   whip the egg whites to soft peaks. Gradually add   the sugar, a little at a time, beating well after each   addition, until the meringue is thick and glossy and   the sugar is dissolved. Add corn flour, vinegar and vanilla and whisk until combined.
  • Spoon the meringue onto the foil covered tray filling   the marked circle. Smooth the meringue sides and   top into what should look like a complete cake shape.
  • Bake in the preheated oven for 90 minutes or until   dry to the touch. Turn off oven. Leave the door open   slightly with the pavlova inside to cool completely.
  • When completely cold, transfer to serving plate. Top   with whipped cream, fresh fruits and serve.

Homemade Vanilla Bean Ice cream

275ml  cream
275 ml milk, (full fat)
2  vanilla beans
6  egg yolks
175g caster sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • Place the cream and milk in a saucepan. Split the vanilla beans and add to the saucepan. Bring to the boil, then turn off the heat and set aside for ten minutes to infuse the vanilla.
  • Place the egg yolks, sugar and vanilla extract into a bowl and whisk by hand until pale.
  • Strain in the milk mixture through a strainer to remove the vanilla pods, directly into the egg mixture. Scrape the vanilla pods of remaining beans before discarding the pods.
  • Mix everything together with a hand whisk and then return to a clean saucepan.
  • Cook over a low heat, stirring, for about five minutes until it is slightly thickened and coats the back of a spoon.
  • Allow the mixture to cool in a large bowl, then refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  • Place the vanilla ice cream base into a plastic bowl and place in the freezer until frozen at the edges. Remove from freezer. Beat with a hand held electric mixer. Re-freeze. Repeat this process two more times. And then allow the mix to freeze for two hours before scooping to serve.

 Homemade Doughnuts
55g unsalted butter, softened
250g caster sugar
1 teaspoon salt
4g vanilla
705g plain (all-purpose) flour
35g baking powder
40g milk powder
110g eggs
300g water

  • Preheat the deep fryer to 190 degrees Celsius.
  • In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment,combine the softened butter, sugar, salt and vanilla, creaming theingredients together, but not over whipping them. In a separate bowlsift together the flour, baking powder and milk powder.
  • Add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture and at the same timeadd the eggs and water. Combine everything to form a smoothdough. Mix for approximately three minutes, scraping down to ensureeverything is combined. Remove the mixture and sit it on a flooredbench for ten minutes.
  • Roll the dough out on the floured bench to 10mm in thickness and cutout with 60mm cutter. Cut the centres out with a 25mm cutter. Allowthe doughnuts to sit for a further ten minutes and then deep fry them.Deep fry on one side until golden brown and then flip over until bothsides are nicely covered.
  •  Remove and toss immediately in sifted icing sugar or cinnamonflavoured caster sugar and serve.

Chocolate Chip Cookies
335g unsalted butter
450g light brown sugar
2 eggs, large
6g vanilla essence 
3g salt
10g baking powder
575g plain (all-purpose) flour
10g cocoa powder 
325g dark chocolate chips

  • Preheat the oven to 175 degrees Celsius.
  •  In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream the softened butter and sugar together until light and pale in colour. Add the eggs one at a time and combine well. Add the salt and vanilla.
  • Sift the cocoa powder and baking powder with the flour and add to the butter mixture. Combine to form a dough. Add the chocolate chips and mix until the chips are well combined.
  • Remove the dough from the mixer and break off walnut sized pieces of dough and squash them onto a parchment paper lined baking tray.
  • Leave space between each dough piece for spreading during cooking.
  • Bake the dough for 12-14 minutes in the preheated oven or until lightly golden brown. Cool cookies on the tray before serving.

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