It's getting chilly here in Australia. Here is some dessert inspiration to make the most of the season's product. Along with some of the last fruits of summer, such as figs and all manner of plums, root vegetables – like celeriac and parsnips – are starting to appear, as well as new-season apples and pears.
Autumn pavlova with sticky sauce
Recipe by Taste
Finish off your Autumn barbecue with this impressive pavlova with sticky sauce.
• 4 egg whites
• 1 cup caster sugar
• 3/4 teaspoon white vinegar
• 2 x 10cm-long strips orange rind
• 1/2 cup orange juice
• 1 tablespoon lemon juice
• 2 tablespoons golden syrup
• 300ml thickened cream, whipped
• 3 ripe figs, quartered
• 250g seedless red grapes, halved
1. | Preheat oven to 120°C/100°C fan-forced. Mark a 19cm circle on a sheet of baking paper. Line a large baking tray with prepared baking paper, pencil-side down.
2. | Using an electric mixer, beat egg whites in a bowl until soft peaks form. Add sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, beating until sugar dissolves. Beat in vinegar until combined. Spoon mixture onto circle on prepared tray. Using a palette knife or spatula, shape mixture into a round. Bake for 1 hour 30 minutes or until firm. Turn off oven. Cool completely in oven with door slightly ajar.
3. | Meanwhile, combine orange rind, juices and syrup in small saucepan. Heat over high heat. Bring to the boil. Boil for 6 minutes or until syrupy and reduced to ¹⁄³ cup. Remove and discard rind. Set aside to cool.
4. | Transfer meringue to a serving plate. Top with cream. Decorate with the figs and grapes. Drizzle with syrup. Serve immediately.
Passionfruit Coconut Slice
Recipe by Gourmet Traveller
This do-ahead dessert keeps in the freezer for up to a month, making it the perfect stand-by sweet. This recipe is topped ours with tangy passionfruit for a fragrant tropical note, but mango, banana or pineapple would also work well.
• 70 gm desiccated coconut
• 75 gmmacadamia nuts, soaked in cold water for 1 hour, drained
• 75 gmcashew nuts, soaked in cold water for 1 hour, drained
• 400 ml coconut cream 125 gmcoconut oil, melted
• 70 gmrice malt syrup
• 1 tspvanilla bean paste
• Passionfruit pulp and finely grated lime rind, to serve
• 75 gmdesiccated coconut
• 75 gmmacadamia nuts
• 75 gmcashew nuts
• 35 gmcoconut crunch
• 100 gmpitted dates
• 40 gmcoconut oil, melted 40 gm rice malt syrup
1. | For coconut crust, grease a 20cm x 30cm cake or slice tin and line it with baking paper. Process coconut and nuts in a food processor until finely chopped, add coconut crunch and dates and process until combined. Add coconut oil, rice malt syrup and a pinch of salt, process to combine, then press into the base of the tin and refrigerate until firm (1-2 hours).
2. | Process coconut and nuts in a food processor until finely chopped, then add half the coconut cream and process until smooth. Add coconut oil, rice malt syrup, vanilla and remaining coconut cream, and process until smooth. Spread mixture over crust, smooth top and place in freezer until firm (1-2 hours). Cover and freeze until required. Remove from freezer 15 minutes before serving.
3. | To serve, cut slice with a hot, wet knife into 3cm x 10cm fingers and top with passionfruit pulp and lime rind.
Caramel Blunt Cake
Recipe by Warren Mendes
Drizzle of your way to the perfect celebration cake with this Caramel Blunt Cake
• 250g unsalted butter, at room temperature
• 1 firmly packed cup (250g) brown sugar
• 1 cup (330g) dulce de leche (a thick caramel made from condensed milk)
• 1 tsp vanilla bean paste
• 4 large eggs, at room temperature
• 3 cups (450g) plain flour
• 2 tsp baking powder
• 1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
• 1 cup (250ml) buttermilk, at room temperature
• 3/4 cup (165g) caster sugar
• 2/3 cup (165ml) pure (thin) cream
1. | Preheat the oven to 170°C and grease a 26cm bundt cake pan.
2. | Using a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat butter and sugar on medium speed until thick and pale.
3. | With the motor running, gradually add dulce de leche, vanilla, then eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition.
4. | In a separate bowl, sift the flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and 1/2 tsp salt.
5. | Reduce speed to low, then add one-third flour mixture to the bowl, then one-third buttermilk.
6. | Repeat, alternating between flour and buttermilk until smooth and combined.
7. | Pour into cake pan and bake for 45 minutes or until a skewer inserted comes out clean. Cool cake in pan for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
8. | Meanwhile, for the caramel sauce, place sugar in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add 2 tbs water and stir until sugar dissolves.
9. | Cook for 8 minutes or until a dark caramel forms, then add cream and 1/2 tsp salt. Stir to combine, then remove from heat and set aside to cool completely.
10. | Pour caramel sauce over cake to serve.
Apple Almond Muffins
Recipe by Fool Proof Living
These gluten-free and naturally sweetened apple almond muffins are perfect for the chilly mornings of autumn to accompany your coffee.
• 1 cup rolled oats
• 1 cup almond flour/meal
• 2/3 cup buckwheat flour
• 2 tablespoons arrowroot powder (corn or potato starch would work as well)
• 1 ½ teaspoon baking powder
• ½ teaspoon baking soda
• 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, more for sprinkling in the end
• ½ teaspoon sea salt
• 10 fresh Medjool dates, pitted and chopped
• 2/3 cup unsweetened fat-free plain yogurt, at room temperature
• 1/3 cup coconut oil, melted and cooled
• 3 large eggs, at room temperature
• 2/3 cup unsweetened applesauce, divided
• 3 medium size apples, peeled and cored – divided
1. | Pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees. Spray a 12-cup muffin time lightly with oil spray and fill each cup with muffin liners.
2. | Place rolled oats in the bowl of a food processor and process until it is fine, 45-50 seconds. Add in the almond flour, buckwheat flour, arrowroot powder, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. Pulse 6-7 times to make sure that they are completely mixed. Transfer the dry ingredients into a large mixing bowl. Wipe the bowl of the food processor with a paper towel. Do not wash.
3. | Place the dates, yogurt, coconut oil, eggs, and 1/3 cup of the applesauce in the bowl of your food processor. Process until smooth, 40-50 seconds. You may have to stop the food processor and scrape the bottom of the bowl a few times to ensure that the dates are not sticking to each other.
4. | Gently fold in the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients.
5. | Grate 2 of the apples and fold them (with their juices) into the batter. Slice the third apple thinly and set aside.
6. | Drop a heaping tablespoon of the muffin batter into each muffin tin. Divide the rest of the reserved applesauce amongst 12 muffin tins (each should be around 1-teaspoon applesauce). Cover each muffin tin with the rest of the batter.
7. | Top each muffin batter with 3 thin slices of apple like you see in the images. Gently press them down.
8. | Sprinkle each muffin with a little bit of cinnamon.
9. | Bake for 20-22 minutes.
10. | Let them cool for at least an hour before serving.
Apple & Blueberry Bread & Butter Crumble
Recipe by Phoebe Wood
Is it a crumble? Is it bread and butter pudding? Who knows. All we know is it’s delicious.
• 50g unsalted butter
• 6 Granny Smith apples, peeled, chopped
• 1/2 cup (125ml) maple syrup
• Finely grated zest of 1 lemon
• 2 tsp vanilla bean paste
• 250g fresh or frozen blueberries
• 1 tbs cornflour
• 1/2 cup (125ml) pouring custard
• 2 thick slices store-bought brioche
• Pure (thin) cream, to serve
• 30g rolled oats
• 60g plain flour
• 25g caster sugar
• 50g cold unsalted butter, chopped
1. | For the crumble, place all the ingredients in a bowl with a pinch of salt and, using your hands, roughly rub the butter into the dry ingredients until it resembles coarse crumbs. Place in the freezer until ready to use.
2. | Place the butter, apple, maple, lemon zest, vanilla and half the blueberries in a saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, for 15 minutes or until apple is tender.
3. | Transfer 1/3 cup (80ml) cooking liquid to a small bowl. Add cornflour and stir until smooth. Return to pan with remaining 125g blueberries and stir to combine. Pour into a 22cm ovenproof pan. Cool slightly.
4. | Preheat the oven to 200°C.
5. | Place custard in a bowl and soak brioche for 30 seconds each side. Arrange over apple mixture. Scatter with crumble and bake for 25 minutes or until golden.
6. | Cool slightly, then serve with cream.