Life has been throwing us all sorts of curveballs lately.
It feels like almost everything has been an uphill battle, taking up way too much time, effort, and most importantly; energy. That elusive, terribly finite resource that seems to run out before anything substantial at all is ever accomplished. Ever since I was diagnosed with IBD in 2011, my energy stores have dwindled down to sometimes rather pathetic levels…there are days where, I kid you not, the simple act of getting out of bed and getting dressed feels like a proper marathon.
So anyway, I’ve been overwhelmed in general, with all this ‘life’ stuff taking quite a toll on my emotional and mental wellbeing, as well as my desire to create and my overall motivation to do…well, STUFF.
I’ve been finding myself wishing, much more often than I usually do, that I was comfortably back home in Cairo in our now sold home (*stifled sob*), with my faithful, beloved Laila taking care of and intensely mothering me. She is the nanny that helped raise me since birth, and is basically a second mom to me. She is also the best cook on planet earth, and her homemade piles of thin, ultra crispy potato chips continue to haunt my dreams whenever I venture away from her and her impulsive desire to feed me every half an hour.
To get my cooking mojo back, I’ve been trying to take the pressure off by resorting to eating out/takeaway/ready-made alternative more often for the sake of my sanity, as well as coming up with quicker, less involved meals that require minimal effort yet deliver comfort and deliciousness. I’m happy to say that I believe it has definitely helped, and I feel my creative juices starting to flow a bit more freely again lately.
This sweet little creation here is a bit of a gem. It could easily win the award for prettiest dessert I’ve ever made, yet takes all of 10-15 minutes max to put together, with no cooking or baking at all involved. It is simply a matter of assembling some beautiful, simple ingredients together to bring out their absolute best qualities, with almost zero effort on your part.
Pretty great deal, hey?
It goes like this: a soft pillow of luxurious vanilla whipped cream supports a tumble of fresh raspberries macerated in a little sugar and a touch of fragrant rosewater, which are then topped with messy shards of crushed store-bought meringue and finished off with a sprinkle of emerald-hued pistachios.
The result is this dreamy, stunning, delicately floral celebration of berries and cream, full of texture & colour and just ever so slightly sweet enough for a light dessert treat. It is the perfect dish to serve your guests for an effortless yet delightful sweet end to a meal.
Of course, you can go the extra mile and make your own meringues in advance if you are feeling ambitious…but for me, this is one of the rare exceptions where ready-made is just as good (if not better) and makes for the most stress-free dessert without compromise (in flavour or sanity).
So, without further ado, here is a sweet little video to show you just how easy and fun it is to put together.
…oh and p.s: how PERFECT is this for mother’s day?? Today (21/3) happens to mark our national Mother’s Day back home in Egypt, which is such a lovely coincidence. So, if you want to make something super special for your wonderful mum this mother’s day (which I strongly recommend), this little plate of heaven will surely go down an absolute treat 😉 I know I’d pick this over non-edible gifts ANY day!
*This post is in collaboration with Harris Farm Markets
- • 250g fresh raspberries
- • 1-2 tbsp. caster sugar
- • 1 tsp. rosewater
- • 300ml pure cream
- • 1 tsp. vanilla paste or extract
- • 8-12 small store-bought plain meringues
- • crushed pistachios to serve
- In a bowl, combine the raspberries, sugar and rosewater and stir carefully to mix without breaking up the berries too much. Set it aside for 10-15 minutes, giving it a quick mix every 5 minutes or so until it becomes syrupy and shiny.
- Meanwhile, add the vanilla to the cream and use a handheld electric mixer on low to whip until soft peaks form, 2-3 minutes. You don’t want the cream to be too stiff, so be careful not to over-whip it! You can also do this by hand with a metal whisk.
- To assemble, place 3-4 heaped tablespoons of the whipped cream into each plate, and top each with a quarter of the raspberries. Crush 2-3 meringues onto each plate, and sprinkle with some crushed pistachios. Serve immediately.