Ruby Berry Eton Mess

Ruby Berry Eton Mess is a quintessential British dessert. Here we crush crisp yet chewy homemade meringue into fresh summer berries and cherries muddled with a thick mascarpone cream.

A plate of Eton Mess

I am so delighted to share my favourite Eton Mess recipe with you. A couple of summers ago I became obsessed by this ruby berry fruit salad. The juiciest strawberries, sweetest raspberries and succulent cherries hulled and pitted and mixed with honey and lime juice.

I could not get enough of this dreamy fruit salad of all my most favourite fruits and it seemed like I ate it every evening for a week. Then as summer barbecues and guests arrived at weekends I topped the fruit salad with whipped double cream and crushed meringues. Suddenly I had discovered this most delectable ruby berry fruit salad had morphed into my favourite ever version of an Eton Mess.

close up view of a plate of Eton Mess

What is Eton Mess?

Eton Mess is a British summer dessert which has been around in print since the 1890s. It is believed to have originated at Eton College where it is served every June at the annual cricket match against Harrow school.

Crushed meringues, whipped cream and bright summer berries are muddled together to create an easy summer dessert. It is so simple to prepare but no one will ever admonish you for your lack of effort as Eton Mess is always everyone’s favourite.

Is Eton Mess gluten-free?

Of course! That is why our gluten-free buddies are so thankful for it. Come summer the proliferation of Eton Mess on dessert menus means we are not just relegated to the ice cream selection when indulging in a Sunday pub lunch.

strawberries, raspberries, cherries in a bowl

Eton Mess dessert with a twist

Eton Mess is traditionally made with strawberries but really almost any fruit can be thrown into the mix. In this ruby berry version we use three of the best red summer fruits:

  • Strawberries
  • Raspberries
  • Cherries

These red summer fruits are macerated for a couple of hours in lime juice and honey to really bring out their amazing flavours.

Mascarpone Double Cream

The other twist to this Eton Mess recipe is to add mascarpone when you are whipping the double cream into soft billowing clouds.

The mascarpone adds more depth of flavour to the cream, a little richer and more luxurious.

A dash of vanilla extract and smattering of icing sugar is also included which means you will really have to restrain yourself from eating this mascarpone cream all the way up before adding to your Eton Mess.

Other twists:

You can use any soft summer fruit in an Eton Mess and then get really creative with how you prepare the fruits. Why not try…

  • Balsamic Strawberries – use all strawberries then instead of macerating the fruits in the honey and lime juice, switch the lime for 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar.
  • Boozy Eton Mess – or swap the lime juice for your favourite tipple. I especially recommend amaretto, a dry sherry like Fino or even limoncello.
  • Ginger Eton Mess – use finely chopped stem ginger along with your ruby berries. You can even use the ginger syrup instead of the honey when macerating.
  • Ice Cream Eton Mess – I have to include this version as there was a pub we used to have our Sunday lunch in which would always include strawberry ice cream in their Eton Mess as well. It’s not traditional but by gum does this twist take it up a notch.

process shot of Eton Mess

Top tools tricks

Now, I am not one for a lot of unnecessary kitchen gadgets. I have limited space in my kitchen and so the last thing I want to do is clog it up. That said there are a couple of little toys that I cannot survive summer food prep without:

  • Strawberry huller
  • Cherry pitter

These gadgets are one trick ponies but if you like a lot of strawberries and cherries when the season comes around then they are invaluable. They both work very well, don’t cost much and don’t take up much space.

Can Eton Mess be made in advance?

Absolutely! That is why this dessert is so genius. The meringues can be made the day before. You can also prepare the fruit and leave it to macerate the day before. Even the mascarpone cream can be whipped up in advance. Keep all of the components separate in the fridge and then assemble just before serving.

How long does Eton Mess keep?

If all the components are kept separate then you could make a couple of days in advance. If they are mixed together though the meringues will begin to dissolve after a few hours so I advise to assemble at the last minute.

Can you make this dessert even easier?

Yes! You don’t have to make your meringues from scratch. If you are pressed for time or just don’t have the inclination then no-one will have a clue that you didn’t whip those egg whites.

Having said that making your meringue for Ruby Berry Eton Mess could not be easier if you did want to make the (minimal) effort. Since the meringues are going to be crushed up in the final dish then you don’t have to worry if your meringues are not insta-perfect.

How to make meringues for Eton Mess

This recipe produces individual meringue kisses that are crisp on the outside then chewy on the inside. They will give the best texture to your Eton Mess.

Process shot of meringues

  1. Pour two egg whites into an extremely clean mixing bowl and whisk until almost firm.
  2. Keep whisking and gradually pour in 100g caster sugar. The egg whites will turn beautifully glossy and begin to firm up.
  3. Whisk for about 5-8 minutes until the egg whites form stiff peaks when you drag the whisk through.
  4. Scoop the meringue into a piping bag fit with a 1M piping tip. Pipe out 12 meringue kisses or stars onto a baking tray lined with greaseproof paper.
  5. Bake in an oven pre-heated to 140°C for 45 minutes.
  6. Turn off the oven and leave the meringues in there for a further hour.

Meringue kisses

Can you make Eton Mess with frozen fruit?

Yes you can. Just add the frozen fruit directly into the macerating liquid, give it a stir and place in the fridge the same as before. Do you know what, if the fruit is still a little freezy when you serve it then all the better. This frozen fruit version won’t hold the body of the fruit as well as the fresh version but it will still be delicious.

A plate of Eton Mess

If you are looking for more summer desserts then cast your eye at the following recipes:

Blackberry Lemon Pudding
Strawberry Pink Peppercorn Cheesecake
No-Bake Frozen Chocolate Cherry Pie
Strawberry Gooseberry Crumble
Mango Lime Pudding
Coconut Cherry Clafoutis

If you make this Ruby Berry Eton Mess then please leave a comment below and/or give the recipe a rating. If you then go on to use this recipe as a launch pad for your own baking creation then I’d also love it if you’d share it and tag me on Instagram. It is so lovely for me to see your versions and variations of my recipes.

Ruby Berry Eton Mess

Ruby Berry Eton Mess is a quintessential British dessert. Here we crush crisp yet chewy homemade meringue into fresh summer berries and cherries muddled with a thick mascarpone cream
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time45 mins
Fruit macerating time2 hrs
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: British
Keyword: Cherry Eton Mess, Easy dessert, Eton Mess, Eton Mess Recipe, Summer Dessert
Servings: 6 people
Calories: 346kcal
Author: Georgina Hartley

Ingredients

Fruit

  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • Juice of ½ lime
  • 200 g strawberries hulled and halved
  • 200 g cherries de-stoned and halved
  • 125 g raspberries

Meringues

  • 2 egg whites
  • 100 g caster sugar

Mascarpone Cream

  • 200 ml double cream
  • 125 g mascarpone
  • 20 g icing sugar
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Fresh mint leaves to decorate

Instructions

Fruit

  • Whisk together the honey and lime juice in a large mixing bowl until the honey has dissolved in the lime juice.
  • Tip the prepared fruit into the bowl and toss together so they are all coated in the juice.
  • Place the bowl in the fridge and leave to marinate for a couple of hours.

Meringues

  • Pour two egg whites into an extremely clean mixing bowl and whisk until almost firm.
  • Keep whisking and gradually pour in 100g caster sugar. The egg whites will turn beautifully glossy and begin to firm up.
  • Whisk for about 5-8 minutes until the egg whites form stiff peaks when you drag the whisk through.
  • Scoop the meringue into a piping bag fit with a 1M piping tip and pipe out 12 meringue kisses or stars onto a baking tray lined with greaseproof paper.
  • Bake in an oven pre-heated to 140°C/120°C fan/gas mark 1 for 45 minutes.
  • Turn off the oven and leave the meringues in there for a further hour.

Mascarpone Cream

  • Pour the double cream into a large mixing bowl and whisk by hand until the cream has slightly thickened.
  • Add the mascarpone, icing sugar and vanilla extract and whisk until smooth. The cream should be thick but still loose enough that it can drop easily from a dessert spoon.

Assembly

  • Serve two meringue kisses per person. Place on a plate and crush gently with the back of a spoon.
  • Spoon over some mascarpone cream, then add the fruit.
  • Drizzle over the macerating juice from the fruits and scatter with fresh mint leaves if you like.

Notes

Make Ahead - All the components of the Eton Mess can be made up to two days before. Keep the fruit and the mascarpone cream separately in the fridge. The meringues should be kept in an airtight tin. Assemble the Eton Messes directly before serving.
Mascarpone Cream - I recommend hand whisking the double cream. It turns from light and billowy to stiff and heavy very quickly so you want utter control when you are whisking. Always under whisk if you are unsure.

Nutrition

Calories: 346kcal | Carbohydrates: 35g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 22g | Saturated Fat: 14g | Cholesterol: 67mg | Sodium: 42mg | Potassium: 198mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 30g | Vitamin A: 16.1% | Vitamin C: 33.4% | Calcium: 6.6% | Iron: 2.2%

This post is not sponsored but some of the links within the post are affiliate links which means if you decide you want to use these link to make your purchases then Amazon gives me a small commission at no cost to you whatsoever. I will only recommend products I use in my kitchen and love. To learn more about how the data processing works when using these Amazon affiliate links then please visit my privacy policy page.

PIN THIS POST TO READ LATER!

A plate of Eton Mess with text overlay

Strawberry Pink Peppercorn Cheesecake {gluten-free}

Strawberry Pink Peppercorn Cheesecake sees in the bounty of early summer spiked with the fruity pepperiness of pink peppercorns.

Strawberry Pink Peppercorn Cheesecake

During the last few days of my pregnancy I was at the farmer’s market and was offered a taster of cheesecake. Since I was avoiding all sugar due to my borderline gestational diabetes I had to decline. I don’t know whether it was the fact that I hadn’t let any sugar pass my lips for a good month or that I am a sucker for cheesecake anyway but the thought of this humble taster haunted my dreams. I threw a fist to the sky and declared that the very first Sunday after I had the baby I was making a beeline to the farmer’s market to buy up every single last slice of cheesecake they had on offer and devouring it there and then.

Strawberry Pink Peppercorn Cheesecake

Well it didn’t quite happen like that but since Beau’s birth I have been back to the farmer’s market and treated myself to the odd slice of cheesecake. So much so that Sunday Cheesecake has now become an unfortunate habit. I really should know better than to form food habits as they are so hard for me to break.

Strawberry Pink Peppercorn Cheesecake

Cheesecake in particular is danger zone territory as it would perhaps be my number one dessert. It definitely grabs second place behind cake for my favourite sweet treat. I can rarely have it out and about though as they don’t often come gluten-free. Which is crazy. So few eateries offer a gluten-free dessert and when they do it’s usually something incredibly boring like poached pears and the inevitable ice cream option.

Strawberry Pink Peppercorn Cheesecake

How do you make a gluten-free cheesecake crust?

It’s so easy to make gluten-free cheesecake without compromising on any taste or consistency. All you do is just use gluten-free biscuits as the base. Now I’m very aware that not all gluten-free biscuits are created equal. Most shop bought gluten-free biscuits are in fact diabolical, too sweet and crumbly.

However gluten-free supermarket offerings are getting better and my favourite brands of gluten-free biscuits, Prewett’s and Nairn’s, are actually just as good as any wheat based biscuit. So basically, pick your brand, bearing in mind that supermarket’s own are rarely much cop. Having said that, your biscuits are soaked in delicious butter then layered beneath thick creamy cheesecake and a mound of whipped cream so any lack of biscuit quality is heavily masked.

Strawberry Pink Peppercorn Cheesecake

To bake or not to bake

There are two main types of cheesecake, one is a no-bake, quickly assembled job without eggs, just cream cheese, cream and sugar. Or the other, which we always knew growing up as New York Cheesecake, which includes eggs and is baked. I love both.

No-bake cheesecake is a bit lighter in consistency but I will happily accept any on offer with unabashed glee. Don’t get involved in a discussion about their respective merits though with Luke who is unfairly derogatory about baked cheesecakes and does not see them as worthy of his time.

This Strawberry Pink Peppercorn Cheesecake is baked though and thinking that would mean I could have at it all to myself, I still found Luke sneaking into the fridge the next day to cut himself several illicit slivers. I even thought the pink peppercorns would dissuade Cole due to their ‘spiciness’ but then I forgot they are red so they only enticed him further.

Strawberry Pink Peppercorn Cheesecake

The delicate spiciness of the pink peppercorns is the real star attraction of this cheesecake, paired sublimely with this season’s brand new strawberries. The colour of the cheesecake is intoxicating and their spiky hit unexpected.

What are Pink Peppercorns?

Pink peppercorns are dried berries from the Baius Rose plant but not strictly peppercorns, as they are actually from the cashew family, rather than being derived from the genus Piper. But they achieved the moniker of peppercorn due to their appearance and their sweet peppery flavour.

Strawberries can take a bit of spice so their pairing works beautifully. The amount of pink peppercorns I’ve included in the batter of the cheesecake is subtle, but the dusting of peppercorns on top can be turned up a notch if you need something spicier.

Strawberry Pink Peppercorn Cheesecake

Freeze-dried strawberry powder

To give the cheesecake a good strawberry flavour we use freeze-dried strawberry powder which is a baking essential these days. Freeze-dried fruit powders are absolutely invaluable to add an intense flavour profile. It’s a godsend ingredient in baking, like in this Chocolate Raspberry Cake, Strawberry Sweet Pesto Cake or Raspberry Matcha Cake. However I also use it in smoothies, porridge and my one of my favourite breakfasts – coconut yoghurt mixed with strawberry powder and almond butter. In fact that last option might be worthy of a blog post of its own. So delicious.

Strawberry powder has all the intense flavour of strawberries, in fact more so, but without any of the liquidity of fresh strawberries which messes around with the consistency of the bake. It is an invaluable ingredient for cake batter or buttercreams. And since the powder lives merrily in the larder for a good length of time it means I always have amazing tasting strawberry yoghurt to hand, strawberry season or no.

Strawberry Pink Peppercorn Cheesecake

For the base of the batter recipe I turned to Ottolenghi, whose cheesecakes really do exemplify the genre. His recipe for Caramel and Macadamia Cheesecake in his original Ottolenghi cookbook holds a special place in my heart as it won me my very own Bake Off title, at our in-house competition at the production company I worked for at about eight years ago. So I used the essential ingredients in that batter for adaptation here.

Strawberry Pink Peppercorn Cheesecake

I finished off my cheesecake with a beautiful cloud of unsweetened whipped double cream as I love the contrast between the lightness of the cream and the creaminess of the cheesecake. Then I dusted the top generously with more crushed pink peppercorns and strawberry powder. Also, not to be missed on top are the fresh strawberries which are finally in season and we should certainly take advantage of.

Strawberry Pink Peppercorn Cheesecake

I photographed this cheesecake whilst the royal wedding was playing in the background. It’s amazing how food memories can capture a moment and editing these photos this morning I was suddenly whisked back into the fairytale world of romantic carriages, a gleaming white dress, antique tiaras, incredibly floral displays, diddy bridesmaids and celeb spotting. I’m sure this memory is now set in stone and whenever I make this Strawberry Pink Peppercorn Cheesecake in the future I will cast a thought to Harry and Meghan.

Strawberry Pink Peppercorn Cheesecake

Strawberry Pink Peppercorn Cheesecake {gluten-free}

Strawberry Pink Peppercorn Cheesecake sees in the bounty of early summer spiked with the fruity pepperiness of pink peppercorns.
Prep Time1 hr
Cook Time1 hr
Total Time3 hrs
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: gluten-free strawberry cheesecake, strawberry pink peppercorn cheesecake, strawberry pink peppercorn cheesecake recipe
Servings: 8 people
Calories: 658kcal
Author: Georgina Hartley

Ingredients

  • 70 g unsalted butter
  • 160 g gluten-free oat biscuits*
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 600 g cream cheese
  • 125 g caster sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 70 g sour cream
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
  • 50 g freeze-dried strawberry powder + ½ teaspoon extra for sprinkling
  • teaspoons pink peppercorns + ½ teaspoon extra for sprinkling crushed
  • 300 g double cream
  • A handful of fresh strawberries for decorating

Instructions

  • Pre-heat the oven to 170°C.
  • Melt the butter in a small saucepan and leave to cool for a few minutes just so the butter is warm rather than hot which helps your biscuit base from becoming too greasy.
  • Whizz up the biscuits and salt in a food processor then with the mixer still on pour in the melted butter until it combines with the biscuit to become a thick sandy texture.
  • Press the biscuit base into an 8 inch springform tin using the bottom of a glass and push the base slightly up the sides of the tin.
  • Bake for 8 minutes, remove from oven and leave to cool whilst you make the filling.
  • Turn oven down to 140°C
  • To make the cheesecake batter, beat the cream cheese and sugar until smooth.
  • Add the sour cream, vanilla extract, lemon juice, strawberry powder and pink peppercorns.
  • Add eggs one at a time until just blended. Don’t overmix.
  • You need to bake the cheesecake in a water bath so wrap the outside of the cake tin with tin foil to avoid water seeping in. I used 3 sheets for extra security, making sure they overlapped each other to completely cover up the sides of the cake tin.
  • Place the tin in a large roasting dish then pour the batter on top of biscuit base, smoothing the surface.
  • Pour boiling water into the large roasting dish around your cheesecake tin. It should reach an inch up the side of the tin.
  • Carefully place the roasting dish in the oven and bake the cheesecake for about 60 minutes.
  • Turn off the heat and leave the oven door ajar for a further 60 minutes before you remove the cheesecake.
  • Take out the oven, leave to cool to room temperature then place in the fridge for at least 4 hours or overnight to chill.
  • To remove the cheesecake from the tin, run a knife around the edges of the cheesecake before you carefully release the latch of the springform tin. Use a cake lifter to slide underneath the base of the cheesecake to separate it from the tin and slide back onto a serving plate.
  • Whip the double cream until thick and floppy but so that it holds its shape a little then dollop on top of the cheesecake, swirling to the edges with a palette knife.
  • Dust the strawberry powder and the crushed peppercorns over the top. Then finally arrange fresh strawberries in the centre.

Notes

*I used Nairn’s Gluten-Free Biscuit Breaks Oats & Syrup
Recipe for the cheesecake adapted from the Caramel and Macadamia Cheesecake in the Ottolenghi Cookbook

Nutrition

Calories: 658kcal | Carbohydrates: 33g | Protein: 9g | Fat: 55g | Saturated Fat: 30g | Cholesterol: 243mg | Sodium: 471mg | Potassium: 194mg | Sugar: 21g | Vitamin A: 39.4% | Vitamin C: 0.9% | Calcium: 12.9% | Iron: 6.8%

SHOP THE RECIPE

I would be nowhere without my Magimix 4200XL Food Processor – Satin for making the crust for this recipe. I have easily had it over ten years and I use it nearly every day for whipping up dips, pestos, nut butters, nut and oat flour and making my breadcrumbs. The Magixmix is an impressive piece of kit which even survived being dropped when we moved into our house (although it did have to have the motor replaced but that wasn’t too expensive). I put all the attachments in the dishwasher and they come out brilliantly clean but it also gives just great results. I love my Magimix and along with my Kitchenaid is the piece of equipment I use most often in my kitchen.

Recently I have been using a lot of products from Realfoodsource.com and have been really happy with their service and quality of ingredients. I was excited when I found out they also stocked freeze-dried fruit powder and so for this recipe I really would recommend using RealFoodSource Certified Organic Freeze Dried Strawberry Powder 100G. I am not sponsored by them, I just really love their products.

I don’t think you can go wrong with ingredients from Whole Foods and I used these Peppercorns Pink 250g to make this Strawberry Pink Peppercorn Cheesecake.

The links above are affiliate links so if you decide to buy anything using the links given then I will get a small commission from Amazon at no cost to you. To learn more about how the data processing works when using these Amazon affiliate links then please visit my privacy policy page.

Strawberry Gooseberry Crumble {gluten-free}

Strawberry Gooseberry Crumble is a marriage of the best of this year’s sweet and tangy berries under a crisp and slightly chewy crumble topping.

Strawberry Gooseberry Crumble {gluten-free}

Gooseberry season is pretty much over but I am hoping you hoarded as many as I did during their too short lifespan this year and stashed them in the freezer to make this crumble.

Strawberry Gooseberry Crumble {gluten-free}

I feel like I have been eating Strawberry Gooseberry Crumble all summer and I have to tell you I am not getting bored of it. The combination of sweet juicy strawberries with their tangy gooseberry brethren is so perfect that this is the pudding that I have been serving up warm with ice cream most Sunday evenings after our roast dinner. Luckily there is always some left for Mondays and Tuesdays but it would be a sin to warm it back up as there is even more joy to be had when the crumble is cold.

Strawberry Gooseberry Crumble {gluten-free}

Strawberry Gooseberry Crumble {gluten-free}

I came up with the recipe last year and meant to post about it then but time got away with me and so it was first on my hitlist this summer. However, the gluten-free crumble topping has proved a little elusive. The main reason being that I wanted to shy away from using rolled oats which is how I’ve been making my crumbles lately. But this time I wanted something more authentic to the crumbles we used to enjoy when I was a child.

Strawberry Gooseberry Crumble {gluten-free}

Strawberry Gooseberry Crumble {gluten-free}

I cracked the code though. A crispness on top with a slight chew thanks to the sweet rice flour and the use of brown sugar with the roughly chopped almonds giving a pleasant crunch. The crumble topping is generous, there is much more crumble than fruit but again, that was always the way when we were younger.

Strawberry Gooseberry Crumble {gluten-free}

I macerate the gooseberries and strawberries for a few hours in sugar which preserves the shape of the fruit during the bake so they don’t fall into a mushy slump. Then I mix the fruit with a bit of cinnamon and ginger and a couple of tablespoons of tapioca pearls which absorbs the excess fruity liquid at the bottom of the crumble and forms an almost jelly. This jelly is the crown jewel of the crumble and I defy you not to drag your spoon at the bottom of the dish seeking out more whilst the crumble is cooling and you have already had your fill.

Strawberry Gooseberry Crumble {gluten-free}

If you have fallen short of gooseberries this year then you don’t have to wait until next year as wild blackberries would make an ideal replacement. They have the same tartness which would pair very well with the last of the season’s strawberries.

Strawberry Gooseberry Crumble {gluten-free}

Strawberry Gooseberry Crumble {gluten-free}

Strawberry Gooseberry Crumble is a marriage of the best of this year’s sweet and tangy berries under a crisp and slightly chewy crumble topping.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time35 mins
Total Time4 hrs 50 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: British
Keyword: gluten-free strawberry crumble, strawberry gooseberry crumble, strawberry gooseberry crumble recipe
Servings: 8 people
Calories: 388kcal
Author: Georgina Hartley

Ingredients

  • 400 g strawberries
  • 300 g gooseberries
  • 50 g caster sugar
  • 2 tablespoons tapioca pearls
  • ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract

Crumble Topping

  • 80 g sweet rice flour
  • 60 g gluten-free oat flour
  • 25 g tapioca flour
  • 80 g almonds roughly chopped
  • 150 g light brown sugar
  • 125 g unsalted butter
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon ground ginger
  • ¼ teaspoon salt

Instructions

  • Hull the strawberries and top and tail the gooseberries then tip into a large bowl and toss with the caster sugar.
  • Cover the bowl with cling film and leave for at least 4 hours to macerate (overnight is okay).
  • Pre-heat the oven to 170°C.
  • Pour the fruit and the juice into the bottom of a baking dish and stir in the tapioca pearls.
  • Sprinkle the ginger, cinnamon and vanilla extract over the fruit and stir in.
  • In a separate bowl mix the flours, almonds and sugars together then rub in the butter until it starts to clump together. I used the paddle attachment of a food processor for ease in this step but don’t take the crumble too far or it will be too sandy.
  • Cover the fruit with the crumble topping then place in the oven for 35-40 minutes until the top of the crumble is golden brown and the fruit is bubbling up from within.

Nutrition

Calories: 388kcal | Carbohydrates: 53g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 19g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Cholesterol: 34mg | Sodium: 82mg | Potassium: 282mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 27g | Vitamin A: 10% | Vitamin C: 48.2% | Calcium: 6.7% | Iron: 7.1%

Shop The Recipe

There are not a lot of kitchen gadgets that I think are worth the space in the kitchen but I do so love my strawberry huller. It is cute and takes the stem off my strawberries with barely any strawberry waste. I use the Chef’n StemGem Strawberry Huller which has been brilliant. The image is an amazon affiliate link so if you purchase through this link then I will get a small commission at no cost to you but will go towards funding this blog.

Strawberry and Stem Ginger Sangria

Strawberry and Stem Ginger Sangria is sweet and spicy, a delightfully refreshing cocktail for a summer’s day.

Strawberry and Stem Ginger Sangria

This gorgeous sangria simply bursts with bright British strawberries and zingy stem ginger. The strawberries and stem ginger are pureed with a dash of syrup and citrusy lime then topped up with a lovely fruity red wine and a splash of bourbon.

Strawberry and Stem Ginger Sangria

For a Non-Alchoholic Version

The non-alcoholic version is a wonderful alternative if you like or require your drink a little softer. Just make the strawberry and stem ginger base as per the method below, then instead of mixing it with red wine and bourbon, top with soda water. A pretty fantastic virgin cocktail by anyone’s standard.

Strawberry and Stem Ginger Sangria

I think we’re all going to need a little bit of sweet and spicy sangria this bank holiday as by all accounts the heatwave is pawing the ground ready to charge and everyone knows in the UK you have to grab the bull by the horns – this might be the only few days of summer we’re going to get!

Other Recipes You May Like…

If you need a recipe for Homemade Stem Ginger in Syrup, then check out this post.
Or maybe you might like to try your hand at Homemade Pimms?

If you make this Strawberry Stem Ginger Sangria then please leave a comment below and/or give the recipe a rating. If you then go on to use this recipe as a launch pad for your own baking creation then I’d also love it if you’d share it and tag me on Instagram. It is so lovely for me to see your versions and variations of my recipes.

Strawberry and Stem Ginger Sangria

Strawberry and Stem Ginger Sangria is sweet and spicy, a delightfully refreshing cocktail for a summer's day.
Prep Time10 mins
Total Time10 mins
Course: Drinks
Cuisine: British
Keyword: cocktail, sangria, stem ginger, strawberry
Servings: 6 people
Calories: 151kcal
Author: Georgina Hartley

Ingredients

  • 2 balls stem ginger plus 1 tablespoon of the syrup
  • 300 g strawberries hulled
  • Juice of 2 limes
  • 1 bottle red wine
  • 60 ml bourbon

Instructions

  • Place the stem ginger, syrup, strawberries and lime juice in the blender and whizz up until smooth.
  • Pour into a large jug along with the red wine and bourbon and stir together.
  • Serve over plenty of ice.

Notes

Rioja is a lovely red wine to use for Sangria.

Nutrition

Calories: 151kcal | Carbohydrates: 8g | Sodium: 5mg | Potassium: 235mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin C: 35.6% | Calcium: 1.8% | Iron: 4.3%
Strawberry and Stem Ginger Sangria

Strawberry Honey Cake

A beautiful summer inspired Strawberry Honey Cake.

Strawberry Honey Cake.
It was an exciting moment this week when I found the first of the British strawberries in the supermarket. I love their newly prolonged season, especially since I never get bored of a strawberry. As Spring moves into Summer the taste of the strawberries evolve meaning you get a little bit of something different as the seasons progress.

Strawberry Honey Cake

These strawberries I took home this week were sweet and juicy. It was excellent forward thinking on my part that I had picked up a couple of punnets as the first one was unashamedly eaten during the prepping stages of baking this cake.

Strawberry Honey Cake

I couldn’t help but pair this cake with honey, I have been collecting local honey from all the little farm shops and farmer’s markets I have been visiting these past few months so I have quite the larder full. I chose a light clear floral honey for the cake and baked it into the batter along with some sour cream to add density and offset the sweetness. I then topped the cake in the same way, a simple buttercream which I then imbued with more of the honey and sour cream.

Strawberry Honey Cake

Strawberry Honey Cake is a perfect teatime treat, enjoyed out in the garden with the distant sound of a lawnmower buzzing in the background. Although it did lead me to contemplate what a sorry state my garden is actually in at the moment and fret over the grassless lawn and ghostly pots of long gone plants so it wasn’t the perfect idyll.

Strawberry Honey Cake

I regret not drizzling my finished cake with honey as well before I took the photos, the idea only came to me as I was tucking into the cake afterwards. The extra drizzle really lifted the strawberries and accentuated the honey so make sure you don’t forget it like me.

Strawberry Honey Cake

A beautiful summer inspired Strawberry Honey Cake.
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time1 hr
Total Time1 hr 20 mins
Course: Cake
Cuisine: British
Keyword: strawberry honey cake, strawberry honey cake recipe
Servings: 10 people
Calories: 513kcal
Author: Georgina Hartley

Ingredients

  • 170 g unsalted butter room temperature
  • 100 g caster sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 120 g honey
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 270 g plain flour *for gluten-free see below
  • teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 200 g sour cream
  • 150 g strawberries hulled and chopped into quarters

Honey Buttercream:

  • 100 g unsalted butter
  • 165 g icing sugar
  • 50 g honey
  • 50 g sour cream
  • pinch of salt

Instructions

  • Pre-heat the oven to 170°C and line and grease a 9 inch loaf tin.
  • Cream the butter and sugar together for a few minutes until pale and fluffy
  • Add the eggs one at a time until fully combined.
  • Pour in the honey and mix well, then the vanilla extract.
  • In a separate mixing bowl whisk the flour, baking powder and salt together.
  • Add 1/3 of the flour to the rest of the cake batter, mixing well. Then follow with half the sour cream, mix it in then another 1/3 of the flour, the rest of the sour cream then the last third of the flour. Mix until the batter has just combined.
  • Pour nearly all of the cake batter into the baking tin.
  • Puncture the batter with the chopped strawberries in a single layer before spreading on the very last of the cake batter to cover the strawberries.
  • Place in the oven and bake for 60-70 minutes. Cool the cake on a wire rack completely before icing.
  • For the honey buttercream beat the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy.
  • Pour in the honey, sour cream and a pinch of salt and mix until completely combined.
  • Using a palette knife spread the buttercream thickly on top of the cake.
  • Decorate with strawberries and drizzled honey.

Notes

* For a gluten-free version of the cake, substitute the plain flour for a blend of:
60g sweet rice flour
45g oat flour
35g millet flour
20g potato starch
15g tapioca flour

Nutrition

Calories: 513kcal | Carbohydrates: 63g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 28g | Saturated Fat: 17g | Cholesterol: 104mg | Sodium: 154mg | Potassium: 170mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 42g | Vitamin A: 17.6% | Vitamin C: 10.9% | Calcium: 7.1% | Iron: 9%

Homemade Pimms

Nothing brings in summer like a cool refreshing glass of Pimms. This Homemade Pimms is delicious and great fun to have a bash at.

Homemade Pimms

Last week I had a helluva time fine tuning my Homemade Pimms recipe let me tell you. Exhausting taste testings were happening at all hours of the day just so I could get the recipe extra right. It was essential that these taste testings happened in the garden as well, when the sun was just so, to guarantee the drink would work perfectly in an authentic environment. Even when I was ultra sure that the balance of sweetness from my cucumber, lemon verbena and mint syrup was exactly correct and the blend of the gin, vermouth, orange curacao and aperol complimented each other impeccably, well, then started the road testing of all the mixers. I cannot tell a lie, it was a very trying week, and did not at all involve getting terribly merry in the middle of the working week for kicks. It was extremely hard work. You can thank me later.

Homemade Pimms

Pimms is the best-known brand of summer fruit cup and it has become synonymous with the cocktail. It was invented in 1823 by James Pimm at The Oyster Bay in Lombard Street, London and was the first mass-produced summer fruit cup. Before then pubs and households just used to make their own blend, consisting of an alcohol base, usually gin, infused with herb and fruit extracts, then topped with a mixer to create a long drink. These days we are completely reliant on trusty old Pimms to herald our barbecues, sports days and of course Wimbledon, and why not, it’s a best seller for a reason.

Homemade Pimms

It has been very important for me to get a good homemade version of the summer cup on the go. It’s absolutely quintessential this time of year and should you run out mid-barbecue it can incite riots amongst even the most polite members of middle England. A social gathering throughout the months of May-September would not be worthy of this country should Pimms not be involved and the great thing about it is how healthy it is. You should stuff as much fruit into your huge plastic jugs as you possibly can as then it has the added benefit of counting as part of your five a day, and that’s not even being facetious, like when you’re swigging back the sunny d and claiming it’s all for the greater good. In the early 1800s when summer cups were at the most popular they were sold as having health benefits, and I don’t see why we need to quibble, they all lived to a ripe old age back then didn’t they?

Homemade Pimms

Making your own Pimms is extremely easy; it begins with an infused sugar syrup. All you need to do is add equal quantities of sugar and water in a saucepan and heat until the sugar has dissolved, then tuck in mint leaves, lemon verbena and cucumber, which are the quintessential flavours to a summer cup. Simmer for a couple of minutes then take off the heat to infuse for an hour or so. This sugar syrup is then the base to which you add the alcohol, it just takes the edge of the potent concoction and sparks up notes of summer before you have even mixed it with all the fruit. The recipe for the syrup below is slightly too much for the amount of summer cup I made, I would have reduced the quantities for you, but making extra is a huge boon as I have been experimenting with this syrup in my drinks left, right and centre. It turns out it is pretty versatile, but the most successful use of it has been drizzling a bit in the bottom of a glass of prosecco to make the most summery bellini you could ever imagine. It’s definitely worth making the syrup for this purpose alone.

I didn’t want my Pimms to be as sweet as the commercial stuff so I was a bit restrained when adding the sugar syrup. I also achieved a more personal blend by adding a splosh more gin that a traditional recipe might include and also a little spritz of aperol which just grabs you just at the end.

Homemade Pimms

Now, the main issue I have when drinking Pimms out and about is not the drink itself but the mixer that it generally paired with – commercial lemonade. It’s just too sweet for me and I can usually just about manage a whole glass before I’m done. I much prefer the taste of the other traditional mixer, ginger ale, but even that can be a bit sweet towards the end of the glass, particularly when you have reached the booze soaked strawberries. After my trials and tribulations going through all the mixers last week I had two absolute standouts. My preferred mixer was half ginger ale (preferably Fever tree) and half tonic water (ditto). Or, my personal favourite, if you want to go completely off piste, was when I paired the summer cup with iced tea. For me, it had the perfect levels of sweetness and refreshing vitality. I find the best ratio of any of your preferred mixer is 1 part summer cup to 3 parts mixer.

The final step is to make a huge jug of the stuff, fill with ice and a fruit salad of your choice, but the absolute necessities to include are cucumber, strawberries and fresh mint. The latter of which you must leave whole, there is nothing worse that picking bits of chopped mint out of your teeth when you’re trying to have a civilised conversation. Although feel free to add any other fruit you fancy as anything else is just fruity gravy.

Homemade Pimms

I urge you to experiment with your own summer cup this summer and you’ll grow even more fond of this most cherished British summertime tradition.

Homemade Pimms

Nothing brings in summer like a cool refreshing glass of Pimms. This homemade version is delicious and great fun to have a bash at.
Prep Time20 mins
Total Time20 mins
Course: Drinks
Cuisine: British
Keyword: homemade pimms, homemade pimms recipe
Servings: 3 servings
Calories: 590kcal
Author: Georgina Hartley

Ingredients

For the cucumber mint syrup:

  • 250 ml water
  • 250 ml white sugar
  • ½ cucumber
  • tiny handful lemon verbena
  • 2 sprigs apple mint

For the Pimms:

  • 300 ml Gin
  • 200 ml Red Vermouth Martini Rosso
  • 100 ml Orange Curacao Triple Sec
  • 1 tbsp Aperol
  • 200 ml summer cup syrup

For mixing:

  • Either lemonade, ginger ale, tonic water or iced tea

For serving:

  • Strawberries, mint leaves and cucumber
  • Slices of orange, apple, lemon and other fruits are optional

Instructions

  • To make the syrup, heat the water and sugar in a small saucepan until the sugar has completely dissolved.
  • Add the other ingredients and bring to a gentle simmer. Simmer for 5 minutes.
  • Remove from the heat and set aside the saucepan to cool and the flavours to infuse for 1-2 hours. Strain then decant the syrup into a jar, you won’t need all of it for the recipe.
  • Mix 200ml of the syrup with the alcohol, stirring it all together well. Decant into a jar until you are ready to drink it.
  • Make up with 1 part summer cup to 3 parts mixer, plenty of ice and lots of mint, cucumber and chopped fruit.
  • The summer cup will keep happily in your drinks cabinet for the whole of the summer, not that mine lasted the week.

Nutrition

Calories: 590kcal | Carbohydrates: 64g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 3mg | Sodium: 74mg | Potassium: 68mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 11g | Vitamin A: 1.5% | Vitamin C: 1.9% | Calcium: 0.7% | Iron: 0.6%