Monday, 9 May 2016

A Delicious Nordic Desert Recipe

I find it too easy to get into a boring old rut with cooking, always making familiar, tried and true recipes, mainly because I feel confident they will turn out well but also because I'm a bit lazy. However, when I'm in the mood I like to experiment and try something new.  This weekend I was asked to a dinner party to farewell lucky friends who are off to live on their vineyard.  I offered to make the desert.  As luck would have it I am in the middle of a creative period so scanned my recipe books for inspiration.  My London based daughter in law had sent me a Nordic recipe book for Christmas, apparently all things Nordic are very fashionable in London right now, so that was my first "go to" for a new recipe. This one caught my eye because it bears  my name.  I'm pleased to say there were plenty of oohs and aahs around the table at the dinner party, everybody seemed to enjoy it as much as I did.  I now know this will become one of my favourites for special occasions (yes, I know it has a lot of sugar in it but it is a "now and then" desert) and here it is:

MIRIAM'S RHUBARB MERINGUE SHORTCAKE

Ingredients

100 grams softened, unsalted butter
65 grams caster sugar
2 eggs, separated plus one extra egg white
125 grams plain all purpose flour
1 teaspoon of baking powder
3 tablespoons of milk

Filling

3 to 4 stalks of rhubarb trimmed and cut into small pieces
1 and a quarter teaspoons ground cinnamon
85 grams of caster sugar
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
30 grams of slivered almonds

A loose bottomed 10 inch flan tin, greased. (I didn't grease mine and the flan came out no trouble)

Method

Preheat oven to 180C or Gas mark 4

Cream the butter and sugar together in a food processor until pale and creamy.  Add the egg yolks one at a time mixing well. In a separate bowl mix the flour and baking powder together, then add half the flour mixture into the butter mixture, blending well. Add half the milk, mix well and then add the second half of the flour mixture and the remaining milk and mix well. Press this mixture into the flan tin, evenly covering the bottom and sides.

Filling: mix the rhubarb, cinnamon and 2 teaspoons of the caster sugar together and spread evenly over the shortcake base.
Whisk the egg whites until they are firm and hold soft peaks then gradually add the rest of the sugar and beat until thick and glossy.  Stir in the vanilla extract and pile the meringue on top of the shortcake.  Don't smooth it out, keep it in little peaks.  Place in the oven.  After 10 minutes quickly sprinkle the almonds over the top without removing the flan from the oven and continue to cook for another 25 to 30 minutes.

I served this with a thick vanilla bean custard but you could also serve it with cream or ice cream.  It is delicious.  I am so pleased my name caught my eye!

This recipe is an adaption of the recipe in NORDIC BAKERY COOKBOOK by Miisa Mink.

I can't wait to try other recipes in the book now.