A friend’s daughter spent her gap year working as a waitress in a London pub. Seeing fresh mint growing in abundance in my garden, she decided it was time to create one of her famous minty cocktails, which doubled up as a refreshing frozen dessert. After a scoop of this the day seems a whole lot less stressful.
Juice of 1 lemon
2 large fresh pineapples
The honeycomb in this icey dessert makes it a real treat. It is so popular with my family that I have to make a double batch otherwise they tend to fight over it. When you are making it, be brave and simmer the golden syrup and sugar long enough so that it gets a nice rich, deep amber — it gives the honeycomb a great flavour.
This is a delicious refreshing ice cream — ideal after an oriental meal. Its creamy texture comes from the coconut milk. Great if you have an abundance of desiccated coconut still left over from Passover. It will keep in the freezer for up to one month.
This is a refreshing low fat parev summer soup. It is a great way to start a barbecue or perfect for when you are entertaining, as it is easy to serve and very quick to make. It looks great served in small tumblers or, alternatively, in shot glasses. Garnish the glass rim with lime zest. Add finely chopped avocado and cherry tomato before serving.
Jam is a lovely way of preserving some of our beautiful summer fruits. Making jam needs no special equipment, although you may find a jam funnel useful for the hot jars to prevent the jam dribbling down the sides.
Preparation time : 10 minutes. Cooking time: 45-55 minutes, Makes 1 x750ml jar or 3 x 250ml jars
1kg blackcurrants, stalks removed
750g jam sugar
This is a simple tray-bake using seasonal English cherries. It is kept very moist by using mild olive oil or vegetable oil in place of butter and with the addition of ground almonds.
Any stone fruit would be suitable, too — Victoria plums or apricots perhaps, stones removed, sliced in half and scattered over the batter.
225g caster sugar
4 large, free range eggs
Finally we are into the best season of the year for locally grown fresh produce. This dish makes the most of all the gorgeous vegetables that are now appearing. Use as many colours as you can. I used red, green and orange peppers and green tomatoes from Borough Market. Pistachios intensify the green colour of the pesto and add an unusual flavour.
This is one of my favourite desserts, good served warm or cold. Rose water gives the fruit compote a wonderful flavour and the pomegranates add a crunchy texture that complements the berry fruits beautifully. Pomegranates are a good source of vitamin C and fibre.
1 large ripe peach
2 large red plums
2 tbsp caster sugar