Yesterday was the first real day of spring here in the Netherlands. The temps hit 18C and a coat was no longer necessary. Hubby and I even had our first glass of wine in the garden! I can’t even begin to tell you how much I love the two seasons ahead! Spring and summer mean outdoor meals, crisp wines and markets overflowing with color — not to mention trips to France! We’ll be headed to the beaches of the north in just a few weeks, and I’m hoping we’ll have great weather. I am so looking forward to walks on the beach, seafood and sea air!
The gorgeous weather had me craving one of the most beautiful and light desserts ever: a crisp pavlova topped with crème fraîche, berries and shaving of chocolate. The best thing about this dessert is that it is so easy to make! Whisking those egg whites in a standing mixer is the hardest part — and you’re not even doing the work! Another wonderful thing about this dessert is that you can top it any which way you please. Try different fruits or whipped cream instead of crème fraîche. You’ll love it!
Here’s my recipe:
- 200ml egg white (I used Two Chicks liquid egg white ) PS: not sponsored!
- 250g sugar
- 250g crème fraîche
- 125g fresh raspberries
- 125g fresh red currants
- dark chocolate
- few leaves of fresh mint
Preheat the oven to 150C. Whisk the egg whites in a mixer on medium-high speed. Once they start to hold their shape, gradually add in the sugar. Line a large baking sheet with baking paper. Use a bit of the beaten egg white to hold down the paper (place a small dollop on each corner). Spread the egg white on the baking tray in a rough circle of about 33cm. Bake for an hour and a half at this temperature. After that, reduce the heat to 90C and give the pavlova an extra 15 minutes with the oven door slightly open. Allow to cool. Spread the crème fraîche over the pavlova and garnish with the fruits, shaving of dark chocolate and mint leaves.
I’m feeling a little guilty. Guilty because there simply aren’t enough hours in a day to accomplish everything that needs to be accomplished, or everything that my heart desires. Nevermind the garden which is full of weeds, or the pantry which is a royal mess. Or even the bookshelves in my attic library which are now unceremoniously crammed with magazines instead of only books.
It’s the fact that I do not have enough time to accomplish the things I really enjoy that sometimes gets to me. Like blogging more, accepting more press invites or making more YouTube videos. I know I shouldn’t be complaining. After all, a day doesn’t go by without me feeling incredibly grateful for being able to live my childhood dream — I am a writer! And not a starving one either!
But sometimes — and that’s a reality everyone with their own company faces — things have to be put on hold. If a client calls with an assignment, I will always try to fit them into my schedule (even if that means working weekends). That’s basically what happened somewhere in the middle of June. Not one major client approached me, but at the same time, I also started working as a journalist for another magazine, and boy were the assignments just pouring in! I am SO incredibly glad that I managed two weeks in France! For a while, I thought I would barely have time to breathe!
But what am I going on about, you ask? Well, my YouTube channel. After a long absence, I am ready to get back in front of the camera and bring you more delicious and easy recipes straight from my kitchen and heart! I did decide, however, to not only focus on French food, but to also include a wide variety of foods and kitchens. So expect everything from Latin American food (can’t forget my roots!) to lots of baked treats, quick snacks, weekday lunches, and foods to keep those kids of ours happy (and healthy)!
I do hope you will join me and subscribe to my channel! See you there??
The combination of goat’s cheese, capers and the season’s best green asparagus is simply divine. Serve this tart as a light lunch with a citrussy Riesling.
We’re having a bit of a crazy spring here in the Netherlands (what’s new?); some days are warm and sunny — I dare say almost ‘summery’ — while others are gray, cold, windy and rainy. Like today. I bet I’ll need my thick coat when I walk Pastis in a bit. Uggh…
Isn’t it fun to complain about the weather? People say it’s a ‘Dutch thing’. I’m not sure. What I do know is that I never complained about the weather when I lived in the US. Each season in Jersey was as expected, and summers were hot and lasted forever. I know my parents back home, for example, went through a very rough winter this past year (and had enough to complain about!), while here, we were very much spared. But it’s already getting warm there… and I’m envious as heck!