Thursday, 18 August 2011

Positively, Perfectly, Pink

Just so you know, I am officially done with winter. The other week brought positively spring-like weather to Sydney and I am sure I speak for all Sydney-siders that I hoped that it will stay like that. The sky was blue, the air was sweet, and the rain that seemed to go on forever (and ruined my plants, no, I am still not over it) had cleared. There was no need for a jacket. Strawberries smelt (and still do) so intense and .... pink.

It's a funny way to describe the smell of a punnet of strawberries but there you go, its how I felt like describing them during those few days when spring came early. 
In my girly, pink, springtime mood, rhubarb also caught my eye, the perfectly tart foil to the strawberries' sweetness, its shiny pink stalks looking like boiled sweets when cut.

I found this recipe for a rhubarb compote here on one of my favourite blogs, I Made That. Honestly, this is an amazing recipe and was easily adapted to include strawberries.They were roasted with vanilla sugar and Cointreau into sweet, soft submission, to be used as you fancy.

I recently purchased the Nigella Quick Collection app for my iPhone and decided to make her shortcakes and together with the compote and some vanilla marscapone cream, I think that this could be a perfect addition to any tea party, or if the weather should grow cold again, at least these can tide you over until Spring. 

Rhubarb and Strawberry Shortcake with Mascarpone Cream
Made directly from the Nigella Quick Collections App and found here

Rhubarb and Strawberry Compote:
Adapted from this recipe at I Made That
This makes an awful lot of compote, but it is lovely on toast or ice-cream once the shortcakes have long been demolished.
1 kg rhubarb cut into small dices
Approx 4 punnets of strawberries chopped to approx the same size as the rhubarb
2 cups sugar
2 vanilla beans
½ cup Cointreau

  1. Carefully split the vanilla beans down the centre and scrap out the seeds. Add the seeds to the sugar and mix. Reserve the vanilla pods.
  2. Add all ingredients including the vanilla pods in a bowl and stand for half an hour to macerate.
  3. take 2 fairly deep baking trays and divide the mix between them. Cover with foil
  4. Bake at 160C for approx 30 to 40 minutes until the fruit is soft but still holds its shape.
  5. Take one pan out of the oven and set aside to cool down. Continue baking the second pan for another 10 to 15 mins until it has intensified in colour and has cooked down further. Take the second pan out to cool.
  6. Strain the liquid from both pans into a saucepan and reduce on a high heat until you have a syrup.
  7. Put the fruit into a large bowl and mix through the reduced syrup.
  8. Will keep for up to a week in an airtight container in the fridge.
Mascarpone Cream
125g mascarpone cheese
½ cup thickened cream
2 tbs caster sugar
2 tsps vanilla extract
Add all ingredients together and whisk until firm.


  1. Hello there! First time here, and it was lovely to stumble on this colorful spring recipe. We've been having the usual dodgy Melbourne weather lately, so I understand your need for winter to be over! I bet a batch of this really cheered you up!

  2. Delicious! Would you believe I've cooked with rhubarb just once? Seriously!

  3. Yasmeen - Hey there! Good to meet you. Thanks for the lovely comment.

    John- No way! I bet it was something awesome.;)

  4. Love the Aussie twist on an American classic!

  5. Ohhh MY! This is a must try recipe! I love how beautiful it looks! :-) Spring is almost here... just a few more days!!! :-)

  6. I am so over this weather! just got soaked again...
    here's to an afternoon of baking. thanks for the lovely recipe

  7. On a similar season-related note, I just ordered a pink plastic folder rather than a blue one because it was more 'Spring-y'. Now I need one of your beautiful shortcakes to go with it.

  8. love the use of allieration...

    mhh the strawberry and rubarb chutney looks sooo hearty!

  9. I absolutely love rhubarb it's one of my favourites. I too have the app it's really great :)
    Winter begone!!

  10. This would be perfect for a lazy afternoon tea on the weekend. Or anytime really!

  11. This looks wonderful! Lucky you, to be leaving winter behind. I'm just about to say goodbye to summer!

  12. Aghh, I’m with you. So over this winter LOL This is the perfect way to brighten up your day. Love the deep red colours.

  13. Yum! Just bought a box with 24 punnets from the markets this morning :D

  14. Can you post me some??? This is making my mouth water!


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