Monday, 12 May 2008
Making a right Malaysian Mess!
Contrary to what the title says, I didn’t mess anything up. Well, not in the literal sense anyway. I made a mess of things, sure, but it turned out to be a pretty darned good mess. No mess up at all. Okay, okay, I’ll stop messing with you all!
One afternoon, the Lovely Wife and I were flipping through Jamie Oliver’s Cook with Jamie when we came across his recipe for Eton Mess. Now I had never heard of an Eton Mess before but the picture of cream with berries and meringue looked rather lovely. The Lovely Wife remarked that this would be something that our son would love as he really likes his fruit and cream, not to mention pavlova!
The Eton Mess has its roots in (surprise, surprise!) Eton – that famous school in England and reputed to be the most famous school in the world. I wouldn’t know about that although I can vouch that Victoria Institution is not only the most famous but also the best school in Malaysia!
Anyway, back to Eton and the mess attributed to it! The Eton Mess is a dessert consisting of a mixture of strawberries, pieces of meringue and cream. It is traditionally served at Eton College's annual prize-giving celebration picnic on the Fourth of June. Apparently however, these days it is celebrated on the last Wednesday in May. Don’t ask me why that is so but I think it just goes to show how Messed up Eton really is…
You can see I’m having fun with this whole ‘Mess’ thing!
I decided to do a variation of the Eton Mess and use a whole bunch of different fruits. I used Kiwis, Bananas, Watermelon, Papaya and Pears. I also decided to flavour my meringue with cocoa – just for a bit of a change. Granted that Kiwis and Pears are not really Malaysian fruits but Watermelon, Papaya and Bananas certainly are. So that's why I call it a Malaysian Mess!
The meringue whipped up nicely and baked even better to a nice crisp. The cocoa meringue gave it a nice twist as it wasn't as sweet as a regular meringue. It was kind of fun breaking the meringue up into pieces and I wish I had got the kids involved in it. Reason I didnt was because I wanted to surprise them with the dessert.
My Kenwood makes whipping cream really easy now using the whisk attachment although you still have to watch that you don't overbeat the cream and end up with a separated mess (ha! There's that word again!!). I flavoured the cream with lots of vanilla and a little icing sugar and it was really quite delicious.
I took a leaf out of Jamie's book and served the Mess in glasses.
The kids simply Loved this dessert and asked for more, and then for more again! The good thing about this dessert is that their dose of fruit - although in all fairness, its never a problem getting them to eat their fruit.
I guess this is really similar to a Pavlova, but somehow serving it in a glass makes a difference. Also, I think my meringue making skills have improved as the meringue stayed crispy for quite a while, even when sitting with all the cream over it.
Or maybe its not my skills that have improved but rather my Kenwood that makes the difference...