desserts

Serradura with strawberries in port

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One of the easiest but tastiest desserts you will ever make. This Portuguese-origin dessert is ingenious and literally means sawdust, named after the finely ground rich tea biscuits used to make its layers. The combination with strawberries in port is a match made in heaven and I discovered it just in time for the strawberry season.

Ingredients
Feeds 4

250g thick cream
7-8 rich tea biscuit ground to fine dust
7 T condensed milk
1 t vanilla essence

220g sliced strawberries
50g caster sugar
1/2 t allspice or pimento berries ground
1 star anice pod
1/2 t vanilla extract
Small handful finely chopped basil , preferably Thai basil.
Enough port to cover the strawberries , about 50Ml

Preparation

Grind biscuits to fine dust in a blender.

Whip cream to soft peaks.

Add vanilla extract and condensed milk, mix and whip again to soft peaks.

Layer four small glasses or containers with biscuit dust, a layer of whipped cream, biscuit and cream. Make layers thin.

Place in the fridge.

Slice and chop the strawberries in half.

Finely chop and basil and add to the strawberries in a bowls or container that has a lid.

Add the sugar, spices and vanilla essence and mix.

Add enough port to the strawberries to just about cover them, mix and set aside.

Cover with lid and place in the fridge for at least an hour.

Lia’s tips:

About four hours is an ideal time to set the strawberries aside. The strawberries get soggier the longer you leave them.

A child’s non alcoholic version is delicious with maple syrup.

The first time around the cream whips really quickly so take care not to make it too stiff.

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Mexican biscuits

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These biscuits will make you dance and yelp ‘άndele άndele!’ like Speedy Gonzales!

I tasted these in Laugharne at a restaurant called the Ranch and could not wait to get back to bake.

Ingredients

Makes around 50 pieces

70gr sugar
210gr salted butter
300gr flour
100gr walnuts, coarsely ground
Zest of one orange
1 Tbsp (spiced) rum

Preparation

Keep the butter in a warm room before creaming with the sugar.

Add the walnuts, zest and rum and knead dough with your fingers.

Shape the dough in mini ovals, 3cm wide and 4cm long.

Bake in 170 Celsius/gas mark 3 to 4. The biscuits must remain pale once baked.

Cool down. Enjoy with hot chocolate, coffee or a glass of red wine.

For a different flavour try pistachio nuts with lime.

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