Sep 262010

[singlepic id=137 w=500 h=333 mode=watermark float=left] We went mulberry picking the other day.  Foraging in local parks and community land is fun, free and easy if you know what you’re looking for.  We’ve been waiting for these mulberries to ripen for what seems like an eternity, but this weekend we were fortunate.  It did require some dexterity on J’s part, as the bushes had been stripped on the easily accessible side, so all the remaining ripe berries were overhanging the creek.  We persevered and ended up with about 500g of mulberries.  Not really enough to make jam, but the perfect amount for mulberry pie.

You’ll have to excuse the picture of the pie – it was delicious, but I haven’t quite mastered my pastry yet.  This pastry is extremely short, which means it was very crumbly and quite difficult to roll out.  I do think it’s worth the extra time and energy to make your own pastry, however if that’s too intimidating, store-bought will also work.

If you don’t have access to wild mulberry bushes, other types of berries would work well.  You might need to adjust the sugar levels depending on the natural sweetness of the berries.  Strawberries are in season in Brisbane at the moment and they are deliciously sweet.  I would probably reduce the sugar if using them.

[recipe-show recipe=mulberrypie]

Sep 052010

[singlepic id=122 w=500 h=333 mode=watermark float=left]This recipe is from a blog I recently discovered called “Citrus and Candy”. If this recipe is anything to go by, the author is some kind of diabolical pastry-chef genius.  Also, I would love to be able to take photo lessons from her!

Imagine rich chocolate ganache.  Add in a homemade pie shell.  Then consider the additional of caramelised banana…and raisins (or in my case, sultanas) soaked in rum.  Now do you see what I’m talking about?  This recipe is larger-than-life.  As a result, it’s a little bit time consuming, and a little bit fiddly.  No element is particularly hard, but it takes time.  And the recipe stretches over two pages.  So, this is not a quick dish to throw together before a bbq – it’s a labour of love.  But it’s worth it.

As the recipe is so long, I won’t attempt to reproduce it here.  If you’re interested, click here.  One thing to note – prepare the pastry first as this is the most time consuming element.   You can even do this the night before to save some stress on the day.

If you can’t be bothered making it, you might have to just ask me very nicely to bring it along when you next have a dinner party…