While a summer Christmas is challenging for traditional Christmas roasts and gravy’s and puddings, South Africans are better-off weather-wise when it comes to Easter culinary inspirations. Think leg of lamb, fish curry and then of course, the baking! The yeasty flavours of the breads, the warm spices, chocolate and dried fruit all make for a beautiful fit to the cooler autumn weather of the Southern hemisphere.
Try our Croissant Cake with stewed apples and berries. It is a lovely cake for a mellow Sunday afternoon, promises to be a hit on any Easter table and, in general, just an awesome dessert – especially if you serve it with our Culinaria Méthode Cap Classique. Made from Chardonnay and Pinot Noir and fermented in the bottle as per the traditional methode champenoise, the wine beautifully complements the flavours of the dessert.
Apple and Berry Custard Croissant Cake
3 apples, peeled, cored and each cut into 12 wedges
⅓ cup water
1 tablespoon caster sugar (to cook the apples in)
5 croissants, halved
2 cups fresh blueberries
¾ cup full-cream milk
1 cup cream
1¼ cup caster sugar (part of the egg, milk and cream mixture)
¾ cup ground almonds
1 teaspoon cinnamon
⅓ cup flaked almonds
1 tablespoon caster sugar (to sprinkle)
Preheat oven to 160 ºC and line the base and sides of a 23-cm spring form cake tin.
Heat water and 1 tablespoon caster sugar in a large frying pan over a medium heat and cook apple wedges until the water has been absorbed and the apples are tender. Remove from the heat and leave to cool.
In a big jug, beat the eggs, yolks, 1¼ cup caster sugar, milk and cream until pale.
In a separate bowl, mix the ground almonds with the cinnamon.
Layer a couple of croissants in the prepared tin, covering the base fully. Sprinkle over half the blueberries, apples and almond mix. Layer up with the remaining croissants, apples, blueberries and almonds, and tear the remaining croissants. Press down gently.
Pour the cream, caster sugar and egg mixture over the croissants, coating everything fully.
Leave to stand for an hour.
Sprinkle with flaked almonds and 1 tablespoon caster sugar and bake for 45 minutes.
The custard might puff up a little in the oven, then sink when it is removed, but it will set into a delicious creamy mix with the croissants.
Leave to cool for at least half an hour before serving with whipped cream and/or vanilla ice- cream. And remember to open a bottle of Culinaria Méthode Cap Classique!
Serves 8 to 10.
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