Sugar Straws

Years ago, I brought homemade puff pastry straws to a local charity event. I had a booth for my cooking school and I displayed the pastries in vases like long-stem flowers.   Once people got wind of my booth, there was a bit of a frenzy — and I had to wrestle the pastries, and […]

Baked Apples

Fragrant. Comforting. Simple. So simple, they hardly merit a recipe — especially when the filling depends on what’s handy in the pantry.  Consider this not a recipe, but a nudge to find inspiration in your own pantry. Crystalized ginger, pecans, dried cherries, raisins, apricots, macadamia nuts … they’ve all been baked into apples at one […]

Ice Cream Hearts

Ahhh, Valentine’s Day.   The grocery stores are decorated with cardboard hearts, half-deflated balloons, cheap chocolate and flowers that might not last the ride home.  It’s enough to make you cringe but my twin daughters love Valentine’s Day.  They rush home from school, scatter their Valentine cards on the floor and read them in a fit of […]

Chocolate Mousse

This cool, rich, melt-in-your-mouth mousse contains only two ingredients: chocolate and cream. I first made this at culinary school as a filling for a decadent Marquise cake — I’ve been making it ever since, with or without the cake. I’ve added pear chips and chocolate leaves for textural contrast and height. A thin cookie perched […]

Homemade Ice Cream

Tossing a carton of ice cream in your shopping cart might be second nature, but making your own can spark your imagination with endless possibilities.  Ice cream, after all, is but a cool ivory canvas, waiting to be flavoured with your favourite ingredients. If you’re wondering if it’s worth the effort, you’ve probably never tasted […]

Berry Good Ice Cream

Strawberries are so sweet and perfect on their own, I hate to mess with them.  Unless there’s an ice cream maker handy, in which case I don’t hesitate to pulverize them beyond recognition for a greater cause: strawberry ice cream. If you’ve never made homemade ice cream, you’re missing out on one of summer’s greatest […]

Lemon Sorbet

For special occasions, I’ll serve these refreshing sorbets in their lemony containers. More often though, I’ll make a jugful of sorbet and serve it in clunky glasses with big straws.  Depending on the crowd, I’ll add a splash of vodka. Sorbets are made in an ice cream maker but if you don’t have one, you […]

Coffee Ice Cream

I  don’t like cream in my coffee but I love coffee in my ice cream. Whether or not you enjoy a cuppa, this ice cream transcends coffee by taming its bitter edge. Start with a basic ice cream recipe and then add a potent coffee syrup.  I’ve tried a rich concentrate of freshly ground expresso […]

Honeydew & Lime Sorbet

As soon as it’s sandal-wearing weather, I dust off my ice cream machine and start tinkering with sorbet (and ice cream) recipes. I’ve made sorbets with everything from grapefruit to cucumbers. Any sweetened fruit (or vegetable) juice works nicely, and it’s fun coming up with your own tasty variations.  Sorbets make refreshing desserts, welcome interludes […]