Cheesecake marbled brownies

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These extraordinarily chocolate-y, cheesecake-y, gooey brownies are the best way to say Thank You, a big THANK YOU in fact. Don’t waste them on something like ‘Thanks for watering my plants’ or watching the dog or some such. They are epic, chocolate-cheesecake brownie nirvana, and only those make an adequate gesture for something big, something so wonderful and delightful like two little boys, for example, delivered healthily and for us being looked after so well, even mollycoddled every minute we have been in the hospital.

If you are not a brownie purist but enjoy a cheesecake version as well, then these are it, I mean they, perfection, nirvana, heaven with (chocolate) knobs on. I never buy chips but chop (good) chocolate and find delight in the odd-sized rubble, especially when I hit the jackpot with a chunky nugget on my piece. Hence the Jackson Pollock look of my brownie slab. A slight reduction of the sugar amount results in a less sweet version but these are in fact sweet, decadent and rich, so no kidding oneself that it’s health food – but cut in little morsels they are not only a big Thank you but the panacea for fraught nerves of overtired people.

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Brown butter ebelskiver

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Æbelskiver are spherical, pillow-y Danish pancakes (south of the Danish border in northern Germany they are known as Pförtchen or poffertjes in the Netherlands) and these two bite-sized marvels were all the rage when we lived in California. Mine come with a nutty brown butter crust and a heavenly soft & light vanilla pancake centre. Being not really on the sweet side they become truly irresistible with a dusting of icing sugar and a sprinkle of dark bitter cocoa powder Continue reading

Finger cookies

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Happy Halloween!

I’ve made these for our first proper Halloween in California and am, as I was then, still totally smitten with these weird cookies with their red varnished fingertips peeking out in-between the sweets in the bowl. They are totally charming and a mighty quick Halloween treat to make, so here’s the recipe for you to create some severed fingers in no time before the door bell rings. Continue reading

Fig tart – tarte aux figues

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Look for the German recipe at the end; Deutsches Rezept am Ende

Figs are abundant and at their absolute best right now. Here, dark purple figs from Turkey with their ruby red interior dominate the fruit displays and this cake, while Black Mission figs were my preferred choice when living in CA – naturally. Figs can either be very bland with woolly flesh or wonderfully sweet, ripe & bursting with flavour. And exactly those with a dark red jewel heart must be seeked out for this super easy & tasty tart, that can be thrown together in seconds. Most of the few ingredients might already be in your fridge and larder or can be stocked easily for an instant fruity cake fix. Continue reading

Lemon verbena sorbet

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If life gives you lemon verbena, make sorbet: This is a perfect summer treat, a refreshing citrus sorbet where the emphasis is on the floral lemon verbena while lemon juice & zest provide a citric lift.

Once tried, there might be no going back from lemon verbena. It used to be impossible hard to find though has now reappeared together with other forgotten or neglected heirloom plants, fruits & vegetables that are ‘rediscovered’ daily. The shrub grows easily in a planter on a balcony or terrace and is luckily quite hardy so that ours comes back every spring for this super summer-cooler. Its essential oils are useful as insect repellents, too but I am not sure how many scoops of sorbet are required for that particular benefit. Great justification, if needed.

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Blueberry Bundt Cake

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Das deutsche Rezept für diesen Blaubeerenkranz ist natürlich unten.

It’s blueberry season (yippee) and we are lucky to live close to a blueberry farm where we I pick up large baskets every Saturday to last us through the week – impossible to have breakfast without them! Flush with an abundance of blueberries as the result of overzealous berry shopping – Is there really a better way then have them in a cake? Continue reading

Yoghurt-vanilla ciambella

Yoghurt cake

Need a foolproof (really), quick & easy recipe for a delicious cake; a cake that is a veritable looker i.e. veerry prrretty? One, that does not even ask you to run out to get special ingredients that by some weird coincidence are not in your larder. The recipe requires only things that most people have at home at any given time: yoghurt, eggs, oil, sugar, flour, vanilla and lemon. Which means you could get started on this one right this instant: because you really would like some slightly lemony & vanilla scented cake ASAP. Or there are VISITORS APPROACHING the door & ringing the bell – gosh, we have no cake in the house & they look hungry (and so are we…); I am getting carried away.

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