Monday, 26 October 2015

Lemon desserts class

Crave Cooking School is a purpose built cooking school and production kitchen in Lyall Bay. We've attended several excellent classes at Crave (knife skills, fish filleting and bread making) but I don't seem have blogged about them. Clearly, they've coincided with some of my busiest writing times at work, meaning I'd used up my daily word quota by the time it came to blogging about them!

On Saturday, we went to a lemon dessert baking class hosted by Luke Crawford from Neo Cafe and Eatery. I love baking with lemons and we used beautiful Meyer lemons from Twisted Citrus in sunny Gisborne.

Meyer lemons
There were three dessert items on the menu for this hands-on class. We began by making sweet pastry and lemon custard filling for a lemon tart. Sour cream lemon tart is a family favourite of ours and these individual tarts followed a similar process. Now, I don't have much patience for blind baking using beans, ceramic balls or rice and have always pricked the pastry several times with a fork instead. It turns out I was on the right track, but brushing the pastry with an egg wash will seal any holes made by the fork. Bam!
Lemon tart
Next up was lemon syllabub. (To be honest, I had to google syllabub beforehand. I've decided it's similar to ambrosia in texture, calories and flavour profile.) Wow! If ever there was a decadent dessert that is deceptively simple, lemon syllabub is it. If you google the ingredients, you'll see that it's pretty much cream, sweet wine, sugar and lemon rinds. We had individual servings of syllabub for first afternoon tea.

Finally, it was onto something a little trickier: lemon soufflé. The process was very different to the chocolate soufflé I make. This is not a recipe that can be refrigerated prior and is best prepared immediately before cooking. There is something incredibly fun about watching a recipe rise and rise in the oven then delicately settle into its final form. After a few soufflé attempts, I've decided that this dessert is not as scary as I'd feared and the results are worth the careful attention the recipes require.
Second afternoon tea: lemon soufflé
Thanks to the team (Luke, Marco and Lucy) for an enjoyable afternoon of baking, learning and eating. We'll be back again soon.

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