Buttermilk Pancakes with Apples and Maple Syrup

Buttermilk Pancakes with Apples and Maple Syrup

These buttermilk pancakes with apple and maple syrup are thicker, North American-style pancakes. The addition of the  buttermilk in the pancakes and the topping of sweet dessert apples, all smothered with maple syrup, make this a delicious dessert.

Buttermilk Pancakes with Apples and Maple Syrup

4 servings (12 pancakes)
  • Preparation time: about 20 minutes
  • Standing time: 20 minutes
  • Cooking time: 30–40 minutes

  • Ingredients
  • For the pancakes
  • 225 g (8 oz) plain/all-purpose flour (1¾ cups)
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 55 g (2 oz) caster/superfine sugar (¼ cup)
  • 170 ml (6 fl oz) buttermilk (¾ cup)
  • 2 eggs, large (U.K.)/extra large (N.A.), beaten
  • 140 ml (5 oz) milk (⅔ cup)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 40 g (1½ oz) butter (3 tbsp)
  • For the apples
  • 3 dessert apples
  • 40 g (1½ oz) butter (3 tbsp)
  • 1 tbsp icing/powdered sugar

  • To serve
  • maple syrup
  • crème fraîche

  • Method
  • Sift the flour and baking powder into a bowl and mix in the sugar.

  • Make a well in the centre and add the buttermilk, beaten eggs, vanilla extract, and most of the milk.

  • Gradually whisk the flour into the wet ingredients, adding enough extra milk to make a smooth, fairly thick batter.

  • Set aside to stand for 20 minutes.

  • Meanwhile warm 6 plates in the oven.

  • Now peel, core and thickly slice the apples.

  • Melt the butter in a large frying pan/skillet and add the apple slices in a single layer. Dust with the icing/powdered sugar and cook over a medium heat for 2–3 minutes on each side until golden. Tip onto a warmed plate, cover with foil, and keep warm in the oven while cooking the pancakes.

  • For the pancakes, melt the butter in a large, heavy gauged frying pan (skillet). Pour into a small bowl and use this to smear the pan between cooking each pancake using a wodge of kitchen paper,

  • Now wipe the pan clean with kitchen paper and then turn up the heat to get the pan really hot.

  • Reduce the heat to medium and then grease the pan with a little of the melted butter. (It should be lightly greased, not running with butter.)

  • Add 3 tablespoonfuls of batter and cook for 1–2 minutes until bubbles appear on the surface of the pancake and the underside is golden. Turn and cook for a further minute. Lift out onto a warmed plate, cover loosely with foil. and pop the plate back in the oven. Repeat using the remaining batter until there are 12 pancakes.

To serve

  • Pile three pancakes on each plate and top with the apple slices.Pour over maple syrup and serve with a spoonful of crème fraîche.
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Updated: January 30, 2020

Salmon and Prawn/Shrimp Filo Pie

Salmon and Prawn/Shrimp Filo Pie

This is one of my favourite fish pies which is really good to serve to guests as it looks so scrumptious and different when baked. Filo pastry keeps it light and is used in a decorative way as a topping. The herby cream cheese filling which is added to cubes of salmon and prawns/shrimp is so smooth and delicious too.

Salmon and Prawn/Shrimp Filo Pie

6 servings
  • Preparation time: 45 minutes
  • Cooking time: 30 minutes
  • Resting time: 12 minutes

  • Ingredients
  • 3 -5 sheets filo* pastry
  • 40 g (1½ oz) butter, melted (3 tbsp)
  • 450 g (1 lb) salmon, skinned and cubed
  • 200 ml crème fraîche
  • 200 g cream cheese, softened
  • 2 eggs, medium (U.K.)/large (N.A.)
  • 2 tbsp fresh dill or tarragon, chopped
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 115 g (4 oz) large prawns/shrimp


  • *filo pastry is also known as phyllo pastry

To serve

  • Serve with a green salad.


  • You will need a 20cm (8 in) loose-bottomed flan tin, 3.75cm (1½ inches) deep, buttered, and a baking tray/sheet. Also a deep sided frying pan/skillet.

  • Method
  • Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F) gas 6.

  • Pop the baking tray/sheet in the oven to heat up while preparing the pie.

  • Now bring some water to the boil in the frying pan/skillet. It will need to be deep enough to cover the salmon. Then add the salmon and bring back to the boil. Immediately remove from the heat, cover the pan/skillet and leave for the water to poach the salmon, about 2–3 minutes, until it is just cooked. If the prawns/shrimp are uncooked, they can be cooked in the water at the same time as the salmon.

  • With a slotted spoon, remove the fish and leave on a plate to cool completely.

  • Meanwhile, beat together the crème fraîche, cream cheese, eggs, herbs, and seasoning until the mixture is smooth.

  • You are going to need five sheets of the pastry which will be large enough to line the flan tin and overlap the edge. Brush one sheet with melted butter, then lay a second sheet on top, rotating it slightly so the edges don’t line up. Brush this sheet with melted butter. Now lay a third sheet on top, again rotating it slightly, and brush with butter. Lay the fourth sheet on top, slightly rotated.

  • Lift these pastry layers and line the flan tin, gently pressing the pastry down into the tin, and leaving the edges extending over the rim. Brush the top layer of pastry with melted butter.

  • Brush the remaining piece of pastry with melted butter and put to one side so it doesn't dry out.

  • Mix the cold salmon cubes and prawns/shrimps with the cream mixture and tip into the flan tin.

  • Now bring the edges of the pastry up over the the filling around the edge, leaving it roughly scrunched up.

  • Tear the remaining piece of pastry into long strips. Scrunch these up and use them to cover the exposed filling.

  • Place the flan tin on the hot baking sheet and loosely cover with foil. Then bake in the oven for 25 minutes.

  • Remove the foil and continue to bake for a further 3–5 minutes until the pastry is crisp and turning golden in colour.

  • Remove from the oven and let rest for 10 minutes for the filling to set.

  • Now carefully lift the pie from the tin but leave on the base. Let it cool for 2 minutes then gently slide off the base onto a serving plate.

  • Serve cut into wedges along with a green salad.


  • – Filo pastry dries out very quickly, so keep it covered until needed to be used.
  • – As the pastry does not contain any fat it can be refrozen. Remove the packet from the freezer to thaw, keeping it covered. Then when the pastry is needed, unroll it and remove the 3 or 5 sheets, depending on the size of the sheets. Now carefully roll the remaining pastry back up, return it to its wrapping and place back in the freezer.
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Updated: December 16, 2019

Raspberry Mousse with Blackberry Coulis

Raspberry Mousse with Blackberry Coulis

Raspberries are used to make this lovely creamy mousse and then an easy-to-make blackberry coulis is poured around the outside. Just top with dollop of crème fraîche and a fresh blackberry.

Raspberry Mousse with Blackberry Coulis

6 servings
  • Preparation time: 35 minutes
  • Setting time: 4 hours or overnight

  • Ingredients
  • For the mousse
  • 225 g (8 oz) fresh raspberries (2 cups)
  • 55 g (2 oz) icing/powdered sugar (½ cup)
  • 142 ml carton double/whipping cream or heavy cream (⅔ cup)
  • 1 tbsp powdered gelatine
  • 1 tbsp kirsch (optional)
  • For the coulis
  • 170 g (6 oz) blackberries
  • tbsp icing/powdered sugar

To serve

  • crème fraîche


  • You will also need 6 ramekin dishes.

  • Method
  • For the mousse
  • Line the dishes with cling film/plastic wrap, pressing well down into the edges and letting it hang over the rim.

  • Using the back of a spoon, push the raspberries through a sieve to remove the seeds. To make sure you get all the raspberry sauce, scrape off any remaining sauce from the underside of the sieve using a clean spoon.

  • Now sift the sugar and add to the sauce. Stir until until the sugar has dissolved and the sauce is smooth.

  • Whisk the cream until it forms soft peaks and then fold into the raspberry sauce. Set to one side.

  • Now sprinkle the gelatine over 3 tablespoons of water in a small bowl and leave for 3 minutes for the gelatine to become spongy.

  • Pour some boiling water into a dish that is just larger than the bowl of gelatine and then sit the bowl of the gelatine in it. Make sure there is only enough water to come halfway up the sides of the smaller bowl. Leave for 2 minutes for the gelatine to dissolve.

  • Stir to make sure all the gelatine has dissolved and the mixture is completely smooth. You want to make sure there are no lumps. Remove the bowl of gelatine from the water and let it cool for a couple of minutes.

  • Now slowly stir into the creamy, raspberry sauce until it is well incorporated.

  • Then add the kirsch, if using.

  • Divide the mixture amongst the ramekin dishes. Cover the dishes and refrigerate for at least 4 hours, or overnight.
  • For the coulis
  • Reserve 8 blackberries for decoration. (If the blackberries are large, just reserve 4.)
  • Push the remainder through a sieve to remove the seeds.

  • Sift the sugar and stir into the blackberry sauce until it has dissolved and the sauce is smooth.

  • Now pour into a jug, cover, and refrigerate until the mousse is ready.

To serve

  • Invert the ramekins on to small serving plates and carefully peel away the cling film/plastic wrap.

  • Then pour the blackberry coulis around the outside of the mousse.

  • Put a dollop of crème fraîche on the top and decorate with the reserved blackberries.
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Updated: August 31, 2019

Summer Fruit Tartlets

Summer Fruit Tartlets

I just love the fruits of summer. Here a mixture of strawberries, raspberries, blueberries and redcurrants top a crème fraîche filling to make a very light tart. Although any favourite summer fruits can be used.

Summer Fruit Tartlets

6 tartlets
  • Preparation time
  • For the sweet pastry: 30 minutes
  • For the filling: 8–10 minutes
  • Cooking time:
  • For the sweet pastry: 12 minutes
  • Chilling time for the sweet pastry: 20 minutes

  • Ingredients
  • For the sweet pastry
  • 145 g (5 oz) plain flour/cake and pastry flour (1 cup)
  • pinch of salt
  • 85 g (3 oz) cold butter, diced (⅜ cup, or ¾ stick)
  • 1 tbsp caster/superfine sugar
  • 1 egg, large (U.K.)/extra large (N.A.), yolk only
  • For the filling
  • 250 ml tub crème fraîche
  • 2 tbsp icing/powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 170 g (6 oz) mixed summer fruit (1 cup)

  • Method
  • For the sweet pastry
  • You will need 6 x 10 cm (4 inch) tartlet tins.
  • Sift the flour and salt into a bowl.

  • Rub in the butter until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Then mix in the sugar.

  • Add the egg yolk, sprinkle over 1 tablespoon cold water and mix to a firm dough. Add a little more water if necessary.

  • Wrap in cling film/plastic wrap and chill for 20 minutes.

  • Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F) (gas 6).

  • Roll out the pastry thinly. Then cut rounds, each 3.8 cm (1½ in) larger than the tartlet tins, re-rolling the pastry until there are six rounds.
  • Line the tartlet tins, gently pressing the pastry down into the edges of the tins. Roll the rolling pin over the top of each tin to remove the excess pastry. Then prick the base, using the tines of a fork, to allow air trapped underneath to escape.
  • Lay the tins on a baking sheet and cover with baking parchment. Pop in the oven for 10 minutes and then remove the baking parchment and cook for a further 2 minutes to crisp up.

  • Remove from the oven and leave to cool for a couple of minutes before carefully removing the cases from the tins to completely cool on a wire rack. They will be delicate until completely cold.

  • For the filling
  • Sift the sugar into bowl and add the crème fraîche and vanilla extract. Stir to combine.

  • Fill the pastry cases and level the tops.

  • Wash and pat dry the fruit. If using strawberries, halve or quarter them so they are of a similar size to the other fruits.

  • Top the filling with the fruit.

  • Serve immediately. If left too long, the filling will begin to soften the pastry.
Print Recipe

Updated: July 30, 2019

Raspberry Cream Dessert

Raspberry Cream Dessert

A very smooth dessert that is quick to prepare. Frozen raspberries are folded into a creamy raspberry mixture that is then left to set.

Raspberry Cream Dessert

8 servings
  • Preparation time: 15 minutes
  • Refrigeration time: The individual serving dishes will take about 1 hour and the large serving dish will take about 3 hours

  • Ingredients
  • 1 pkt raspberry jelly/jello
  • 2 tbsp caster/superfine sugar
  • 150 ml (5 fl oz) soured cream (⅔ cup)
  • 300 ml (10 fl oz) double/whipping or heavy cream (1¼ cups)
  • ½ lemon, juice only (1½ tbsp)
  • 450 g (1 lb) frozen raspberries (4 cups)
  • crème frâiche to serve

To serve

  • You will also need a large glass serving dish or 8 individual glass dishes.

  • Method
  • Bring some water to to the boil.

  • If using a packet jelly in the UK, pour 150 ml (5 fl oz) of the boiling water into a bowl. Separate the jelly into its sections and add to the bowl, stirring until the jelly has melted. Then stir in 150 ml (5 fl oz) of cold water.
  • If using jello in North America, pour 120 ml (4 fl oz) (½ cup) of boiling water into a bowl. Add the jello, stirring to dissolve and then stir in 120 ml (4 fl oz) (½ cup) of cold water.
  • Add the sugar to the jelly, stirring to dissolve.

  • Then, using a balloon whisk, whisk in the sour cream until it is well mixed in.

  • Now in a separate bowl, whisk the cream until soft peaks form and then fold this into the jelly mixture until fully incorporated.

  • Stir in the lemon juice.

  • The raspberries do not have to be fully thawed but they do need to be separated. Gently stir these into the jelly mixture.

  • Pour into the large bowl, or divide amongst the individual glass dishes, and refrigerate to set.

  • When ready to serve just dollop a spoonful of crème frâiche on the top.
Print Recipe

Updated: May 19, 2019

Strawberry Pavlova

Strawberry Pavlova

This gorgeous dessert was allegedly first made in Australia in 1935 for the Russian dancer Anna Pavlova. This version has a twist by adding framboise to the strawberries and introducing crème fraîche to the whipped cream to reduce the richness of the cream.

Strawberry Pavlova

6 –8 servings
  • Preparation time: 30 minutes
  • Cooking time: 1 hour 15 minutes

  • Ingredients
  • 3 eggs, large (U.K.)/extra large (N.A.), whites only
  • 170 g (6 oz) caster/granulated sugar (¾ cup + 2 tbsp)
  • 1 tbsp cornflour/cornstarch
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp white wine vinegar
  • 450 g (1 lb) strawberries (about 3 cups)
  • 3 tbsp framboise (raspberry liqueur)
  • 284 ml (9 fl oz) carton double/whipping or heavy cream (1⅛ cups)
  • 180 ml crème fraîche (⅞ cup)

  • Method
  • Draw a 20 cm (8 inch) circle on a piece of baking parchment. Turn it over and lay on a baking tray/sheet.
  • Preheat the oven to 130°C (250°F) (gas ½).

  • Add the egg whites to a grease-free bowl and whisk until stiff peaks form. (You should be able to turn the bowl upside down without the egg whites falling out!)

  • Then add the sugar one spoonful at a time, whisking well between each addition, until the meringue is stiff and glossy.

  • Next, sprinkle over the cornflour/cornstarch, vanilla extract, and vinegar. Whisk briefly, just enough to combine everything. The meringue will soften a little.

  • Put a dab of meringue in the four corners of the baking sheet and press the baking parchment down. (This will prevent it from slipping.) Now, using a metal spoon, spoon the meringue evenly within the marked circle. Then, using the back of a spoon, make a slight dip in the centre of the meringue which will hold the strawberries. Bake for 1 hour 15 minutes. The meringue should be firm at the edges and slightly soft in the centre. Leave to cool.

  • Meanwhile, wash the strawberries, gently pat dry and hull. Halve any that are large so they are all fairly equal in size. Place them in a large bowl and add the framboise. Gently toss together until the strawberries are coated and then leave to marinate.

  • Once the meringue has cooled, whip the cream until soft peaks form. Now, beat the crème fraîche, which will loosen its stiff consistency, and then gently fold into the cream.

  • Carefully peel the baking parchment from the meringue and place it on a serving plate. Add three quarters of the strawberries to the cream mixture and, just using a few strokes, gently fold through. Spoon into the centre of the pavlova. Now decorate the top with the reserved strawberries and drizzle over any strawberry juice.

  • Serve immediately.
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Updated: July 31, 2018

Salmon Quiche

Salmon Quiche

This salmon quiche is filled with a base of chopped rocket/arugula before flaked salmon is added and covered in creamy crème fraîche. Perfect for a lunch served with a green salad.

Salmon Quiche

8 servings
  • Preparation time: 15 minutes plus 30 minutes for the pastry case
  • Chilling time: 40 minutes for the pastry case
  • Cooking time: 25 minutes plus 20 minutes for the pastry case

  • Ingredients
  • For the shortcrust pastry
  • 225 g (8 oz) plain flour/cake and pastry flour (2 cups less 2 tbsp)
  • pinch of salt
  • 55 g (2 oz) butter, chilled and cubed (¼ cup, or ½ stick)
  • 55 g (2 oz) lard, chilled and cubed (¼ cup)
  • 3 tbsp ice cold water

  • For the filling
  • 55 g (2 oz) rocket/arugula
  • 140 g (5 oz) cooked salmon fillet OR
  • 1 tin/can wild red pacific sockeye salmon, drained and any skin and bones removed
  • 2 eggs, large (U.K.)/extra large (N.A.)
  • 240 ml (8 fl oz) crème fraîche (1 cup)
  • salt and ground black pepper


  • 23 cm (9 inch) quiche tin (a solid tin with a loose base)

  • Method
  • For the pastry
  • Sift the flour and salt into a mixing bowl. Rub in the butter and lard until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Sprinkle over the water and gently bring together. Tip onto a work surface and lightly knead into a ball. Wrap in cling film/wrap and chill for 20 minutes.

  • Roll out the pastry onto a floured work surface slightly larger than the quiche tin. Lift carefully into the tin, pressing the pastry down into the edges using the edge of your index finger. Run the rolling pin over the top of the tin to remove the excess pastry. Prick the base using the tines of a fork and return to the refrigerator to chill for a further 20 minutes.

  • Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F) gas 6

  • Line the pastry case with baking parchment and fill with baking beans. Bake in the oven for 15 minutes then remove the baking beans and parchment. Return to the oven for a further 5 minutes.

  • Remove from the oven and leave to cool.

  • For the filling
  • Reduce the oven temperature to 180°C (350°F) gas 4

  • Remove the pastry case from its pan and carefully transfer to a baking sheet.

  • Roughly chop the rocket/arugula, discarding any thick stalks, and spread over the base of the pastry case.

  • Flake the fish and scatter on top of the rocket/arugula.

  • Now beat the eggs and crème fraîche together, using a hand held electric mixer, until combined. Then season. Gradually pour into the pastry case.

  • Bake for 30 minutes until the mixture has just set.
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