Friday, September 21, 2012


Although I love the cool crisp weather that we are starting to feel in the air, there are many things I will miss about summer...

Ice cream dates
Watching fireflies in Union Square
Sleeping with the windows open
Walks on the High Line
Iced coffees at Blue Marble
Heirloom tomato salads
Escaping to Fire Island
Patio dining
Rooftop cocktails
Coral-pink sunsets

This key lime tart will bring a taste of summer to the table no matter the time of year. After I tried it for the first time one summer in Key West, I haven't let a summer pass without making it since.

What's on your 2012 summer list?
  • 1 1/4 cups crushed graham crackers (or digestive biscuits)
  • Pinch of ginger powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon key lime zest
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 6 tablespoons salted butter (room temperature)
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 1 can sweetened condensed milk (14oz)
  • 1/2 cup freshly squeezed key lime juice (approx 15 key limes)
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
  • Key lime zest for sprinkling at the end
  • Preheat the oven to 350F (175C)
  • Pulse the graham crackers in a food processor or bash them in the plastic bag until they resemble bread crumbs. Mix the crushed crackers with the room temperature butter, sugar, ginger and key lime zest.
  • Add the mixture to a 9 inch tart pan and press the crumbs into the pan evenly and well. Bake in the oven at 350F for 7-10 mins until lightly golden brown.
  • In another bowl, whisk together the egg yolks and key lime juice, condensed milk and vanilla until very smooth. Pour this mixture into golden tart crust. Bake for 15 mins in the oven at 350F
  • After baking sprinkle the top of the pie with some key lime zest. Allow the pie to cool for 15 mins and then refrigerate for 2 hours.

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Tuesday, August 21, 2012


I love the birthday cake trend right now with sprinkles in the batter; they add color and fun to a simple sponge. I also love how “birthday cake” has now become a prominent flavor in ice cream and other desserts. Who can resist that vanilla cake batter flavor with sprinkles?

Some more of my summer recipes: Cherry Clafoutis, Lemon-Syrup Tea CakePeach & Blueberry Pie, Lemon Tarts, Plum Cake, Strawberries & Cream Fairy Cakes.

Victoria Sponge Birthday Cake 
(makes 1 cake)
  • 1 cup butter (room temperature)
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 tablespoon grated lemon zest
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour (well sifted)
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 cup of colorful sprinkles (plus extra for decoration)
  • 1.5 cups heavy whipping cream (double cream)
  • 1 tablespoon confectioners sugar (plus extra for dusting on top)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup raspberry jam (or strawberry)
  • Preheat the oven to 350F. Spray a 9-inch round cake pan with oil and then dust lightly with flour.
  • In a large bowl whisk together the butter and sugar until fluffy. Beat in the eggs, vanilla, salt, and lemon zest. Sift in the flour and baking powder, whisk until smooth. Mix in the sprinkles.
  • Add the batter to the prepared pan and bake for 30-35 minutes or until golden and an inserted skewer comes out clean. Allow the cake to cool on a rack.
  • For the filling, whisk together the heavy cream, confectioners sugar and vanilla extract until the cream is whipped to soft peaks.
  • Cut the cake in half horizontally and spread each inner side with raspberry jam. Then dollop the whipped cream onto the lower half of the cake and spread out evenly.  Add the top half of the cake on top of the cream, jam side down.
  • Dust the top of the cake with confectioners sugar and more sprinkles.

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