Saucy chocolate and coconut puddings

Mini self-saucing chocolate and coconut puddings.

While some may not share my sentiments I actually love the school holidays. No lunch boxes, no school runs, and just generally no rushing. Yes, it does mean that productivity grinds to a halt and there is the ever present risk of cabin fever, but how wonderful it is to have a short break from the regular routine and enjoy some quality time with the little ones. We have managed to do a couple of fun outings so far, but when it is cold outside we love to huddle into the kitchen and cook or bake (i.e. make a huge mess!) together.

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Apple and raisin oaty crumble with vanilla custard

This is a little something I whipped up over the weekend and an absolute classic as I am sure you will agree! There is something very comforting and homely about preparing and eating this particular dessert and I love the heavenly combination of spiced apple, crunchy oat crumble and creamy vanilla custard.

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Pear, rosemary and almond praline tart with chocolate and Amarula sauce

Pear and almond praline tart with chocolate ganache
The 5th challenge in the Freshly Blogged competition had all the bloggers excited because it was a sweet challenge for a change. Personally, I was thrilled as this was just what I had been hoping for! The ingredients list was a cook’s dream, with a myriad of recipe options to choose from: Amarula cream, dark chocolate, pears, blanched almonds and cream crackers. The challenge also stipulated that the dish had to include a custard based recipe. The hardest part of the challenge was deciding what dish to make! In the end I decided on a pear and rosemary tart, filled with almond praline pastry cream and served with a chocolate Amarula drizzling sauce.

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Spiced guava and coconut crumble (with video)

Here in Cape Town the nights are getting longer, mornings are getting chillier and we can no longer deny that winter has arrived! While I love our beautiful summers I can’t say I mind this time of year too much, after all, it’s an excuse to unpack my scarves, light a fire and enjoy some of my favourite winter dishes that warm from the inside out.

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