Satisfy Sugar Cravings In A Jiffy

Desserts don’t have to be complicated to make to be delicious. Turn to these quick, no-fuss recipes for a delectable treat

Portrait of Tammy Strobel
"This easy tiramisu does not contain raw eggs, is quick to make and still yummy!"
For recipe, see page 77

Last-Minute Desserts That Impress

Whip up a sweet treat in less than an hour with these quick and easy recipes 
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The log needs to be made the night before or on the morning of the day you’re going to serve it, to allow the flavours to develop and the biscuit to become rich and cake-like.


Prep 25 mins (+ refrigeration time) | Serves 6-8 600 ml thickened cream

½ cup (125 ml) orange-flavoured liqueur (see liqueur substitution tip)
250 g packet chocolate ripple biscuits

1 tsp cocoa powder

1. In an electric mixer or using handheld beaters, whip the cream until firm peaks form.

2. Place the liqueur in a small bowl. Dip one biscuit into the liqueur and submerge it for 5 secs. Allow the excess liquid to drain from the biscuit. Spread the biscuit with about a tbsp of cream. Dip a second biscuit into the liqueur for 2 secs and sandwich it with the first. Stand the two biscuits on their edge, on one side of a 35 cm-long serving platter.

3. Dip a third biscuit in liqueur for 5 secs and spread it with another tbsp of cream. Join it to the other two biscuits. Repeat this process, forming a log shape. Cover loosely with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 3 hours.

4. Just before serving, carefully spread the cream all over the outside of the log. Dust with the sifted cocoa. To serve, cut on the diagonal so that all the beautiful layers are visible.
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You can use Grand Marnier, Cointreau or triple sec, or substitute with orange juice.


Prep and Cook 15 mins (+ cooling and refrigeration time) | Serves 6

200 g dark chocolate
600 ml thickened cream
¼ cup (55 g) caster sugar
2 tbsps orange-flavoured liqueur (see liqueur substitution tip)
670 g jar bottled morello cherries
½ cup (160 g) cherry jam

30 g Flake chocolate bar

1. Melt the dark chocolate in a bowl over a saucepan of barely simmering water. Remove from heat and cool for 5 mins.

2. Whip the cream, sugar and liqueur in a bowl with an electric mixer until soft peaks form.

3. Reserve ¼ of cream mixture for decoration, and refrigerate. Stir ¼ of remaining cream mixture into chocolate, and fold this chocolate mixture through cream mixture. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour.

4. Stir cherries and jam in a small bowl. Spoon half the mousse into bases of four serving glasses. Top with half the cherry mixture. Repeat layers. Decorate with reserved cream; crumble Flake chocolate bar over the top.

Using bottled cherries and cherry jam eliminates the need to make your own compote, and you can also make this dessert even if it’s not cherry season. If you want this dessert with the traditional Black Forest addition of kirsch, you can use it in place of the orange liqueur.
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Prep 20 mins (+ refrigeration time) | Serves 6-8

300 ml thickened cream
2 tbsps brown sugar
2 tsps vanilla extract
250 g tub mascarpone cheese
1¼ cups (310 ml) coffee, cooled (or instant coffee granules or espresso)
⅓ cup (80ml) coffee-flavoured liqueur (or use Kahlua, Tia Maria or Marsala)
250 g packet Savoiardi sponge finger biscuits
30 g dark chocolate

½ cup (40 g) flaked almonds, toasted

1. Using an electric mixer or electric hand beater, whip cream to soft peaks. Add sugar and vanilla to the mascarpone and stir through before combining with the cream.

2. Combine coffee and liqueur in a bowl. Dip each biscuit in and allow to soak each side for a couple of seconds before draining and placing in the base of a medium serving dish. Cover base of the dish, then top with half the mascarpone mixture. Repeat process with remaining biscuits and mascarpone.

3. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours. Before serving, grate chocolate over the top and scatter with some flaked almonds.
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Prep and Cook 30 mins | Serves 4

500 g strawberries, hulled, sliced
¼ cup (55 g) caster sugar
1½ tbsps lemon juice
 ¾ cup (110 g) plain flour
3 eggs, beaten lightly
1½ cups (375 ml) milk
30 g butter

Double cream or vanilla ice cream, to serve

1. In a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, stir together strawberries with sugar and juice. Bring to boil; boil for 2 mins, shaking pan occasionally.

2. To make the crepes, place the flour in a medium bowl and add beaten eggs and milk. Whisk well to ensure there are no lumps.

3. Heat a 25 cm (top measurement) frying pan over medium-high heat. Grease pan with some of the butter. Pour just under ¼ cup batter into the base of the pan and quickly swirl to make a thin circle. Cook for 1 min, then flip and cook for a further 30 secs. The crepe should be golden brown. Transfer to a plate; cover to keep warm.

4. Repeat with the remaining butter and batter until all is used. You may need to turn the temperature down slightly as you go, as the pan gets hotter the longer you cook.

5. To serve, fold the crepes into quarters and arrange two on each plate. Spoon the strawberry sauce over the top, and serve with cream or ice cream.
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Prep and Cook 45 mins | Serves 4-6

2 sheets frozen puffy pastry
1 egg, beaten lightly
2 medium (300 g) Pink Lady or Jazz apples, peeled, sliced thinly Juice of 1 lemon
20 g butter, melted
1½ tbsps raw or Demerara sugar
¼ tsps ground cinnamon
2 tbsps apricot jam

Cream or vanilla ice cream, to serve

1. Preheat oven to 220 C (200 C fan-forced). Line an oven tray with baking paper.

2. Using a plate that is a similar size to a pastry sheet, cut a circle in both sheets of puff pastry. In one of the sheets, cut a second smaller circle, so there is a 2 cm-wide ring of pastry. Reserve centre pastry for another use. Brush the edge of the pastry circle with a little of the egg and place the ring on top. Brush the top of the ring with egg as well.

3. Toss the apple in lemon juice in a large bowl. Arrange the apples inside the pastry ring. Brush the apples with butter, and then sprinkle with sugar and cinnamon.

4. Bake the tart on the lowest shelf of the oven for 25 mins or until the pastry is golden, and the apple is soft. You may freeze this if you’re making ahead.

5. Microwave the jam in a microwaveproof jug or bowl on high for 20 secs or until warm; brush over the apple.

6. Serve the apple tart hot with cream or ice cream.