White vanilla macaron with sakura tea ganache recipe

This is a recipe from Sakura at Sake No Hana

Sake no Hana sakura macaronsFor the tant pour tant:


600g ground almonds
600g icing sugar
220g egg whites


In a mixing machine bowl, mix all the ingredients together until smooth.

For the macaron:


1 batch tant pour tant
220g egg whites
600g caster sugar
120g water
8g white colour
1 vanilla pod seeds scraped


  1. Place the egg whites into a machine mixing bowl, begin to whisk on a low speed.
  2. Place the caster sugar and water together in a pan and cook the sugar to soft ball 118°C. When the sugar has reached 105°C, increase the speed on the egg whites and stabilise the meringue with 20g caster sugar.
  3. Once the boiling sugar has reached 118°C, reduce the speed of the egg whites and pour the sugar gently over the egg whites.
  4. Increase the speed and mix for 1 minute, stop the machine and add in the white colour and vanilla pod seeds. Turn on the speed again and whisk until the meringue has cooled to blood temperature.
  5. Fold 1/3 of the meringue into the tant pour tant base and mix gently until smooth then fold in the remaining meringue and mix until smooth and glossy.
  6. Place into a piping bag with a 10mm piping nozzle.
  7. Pipe 4 cm diameter rounds onto a tray lined with a non stick baking mat, allow to rest for at least 30 minutes.
  8. Pre heat the oven to 130°C, place the macarons into the oven and cook for 16-17 minutes, until they just start to peel off the baking mat.
  9. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.

For the sakura tea ganache:


150g milk chocolate (35% cocoa solids)
150g dark chocolate (66% cocoa solids)
210g whipping cream
8g sakura tea
25g unsalted butter



  1. Place the whipping cream in a pan and bring to the boil, add in the sakura tea and allow to infuse for 20-30 minutes.
  2. Strain the whipping cream into another pan.
  3. Place the chocolate into a mixing bowl.
  4. Bring the infused cream back to the boil, pour over the chocolate mix gently until a ganache consistency is formed. Gradually add in the softened butter, mix until fully emulsified.
  5. Allow to set, at room temperature.


To build the macaron:

  1. Match the macarons to create a top and a bottom.
  2. Place the sakura ganache into a piping bag with a 10mm piping tube, pipe a bulb into the centre of one half the macarons.
  3. Stick the top to the bottom of the macaron.

Rice pudding with banana and spice recipe

This is a recipe from the Michel Roux Jr and Bordeaux wine partnership

This recipe for me is all about childhood food memories, the rum gives it an adult kick and the banana crisps an extravagance well worth the effort.

Serves 6

Rice Pudding with Banana & SpiceIngredients:

1 Litre milk
75g caster sugar
1 vanilla pod, split
2 cloves
2 sticks cinnamon
3 cardamom pods
½ tsp ground nutmeg
200g pudding rice
4 bananas, peeled and cut into wedges
1 tbsp butter
1 tbsp light muscovado sugar
2 tbsp dark rum
1 200ml can of sweetened condensed milk

For the banana crisps:

1 under-ripe banana
Icing sugar for dusting


For the rice pudding:

  1. Bring the milk to the boil with the caster sugar, split vanilla pod, cloves, cinnamon, cardamom and a little nutmeg.
  2. Sprinkle in the rice and stir. Simmer for 40 minutes, stirring occasionally to avoid sticking.
  3. Cover and leave to stand for at least 20 minutes.
  4. Pan fry the bananas with the butter and sugar. When lightly caramelised but still firm, pour in the rum and take off the heat.
  5. Fold the condensed milk into the rice.
  6. Serve the pudding in bowls with the banana on top.
  7. Decorate with banana crisps.

For the banana crisps:

  1. Peel an under-ripe banana and slice it as thinly as possible lengthways.
  2. Put the slices on a non-stick baking mat, dust with icing sugar and dry out in a low oven, 110°C, until brown and crisp.
  3. These crisps can be kept in an airtight container for a couple of days.

My Bordeaux Wine Pick: Sauternes

Rich with tropical fruit, sweet with butterscotch, yet perfectly balanced with a hint of spice, for that extra level of indulgence. Matched with this rich rice pudding, this would be my perfect Bordeaux pick.

Baked apples with fruit mince recipe

This is a recipe from the Michel Roux Jr and Bordeaux wine partnership

Baked apple is the simplest of desserts, but the addition of spice and dried fruits make this a dessert for a special occasion. Serve with a generous spoon of clotted cream or a good quality bought in ice cream.

Serves 6

Baked Apples with Fruit MinceIngredients:

For the fruit mince:

100g suet
120 light brown muscovado sugar
3 cooking apples peeled, cored and grated
80g sultanas
60g seedless raisins
100g dried prunes, stoned and chopped
Finely grated zest and juice of 1 orange
100g walnuts, almond and pistachios chopped (total weight)
1 tsp ground cinnamon
½ tsp mixed spice
2 tbps brandy or dark rum

For the baked apples:

6 sweet dessert apples
100g unsalted butter
Icing sugar, sifted
Juice of 1 lemon
4 tablespoons brandy or dark rum


  1. Mix all the fruit mix ingredients together.
  2. Add spices to taste, for example you may like more cinnamon or even a little ground ginger.
  3. Store in jars or an airtight container in the fridge for at least a week. It can, however, be kept for months.
  4. Peel and core the apples.
  5. Fill with the fruit mince, packing it tightly: there will be plenty, so pile it up to cover the top of the apples, and press down firmly.
  6. Place the apples in a roasting tray with a knob of butter on each.
  7. Sprinkle liberally with icing sugar, and bake at 200°C for 20 to 25 minutes, basting often with the cooking juices.
  8. Remove form the oven and leave to rest for 15 minutes. Place the apples on warm plates.
  9. Place the roasting tray on the stove-top over high heat. Add the lemon juice and brandy or rum and boil, whisking constantly, to make the caramel sauce. Strain through a sieve when syrupy.
  10. Pour a little syrup around the apples.
  11. Serve with muscovado ice cream.

My Bordeaux Wine Pick: Bordeaux Rosé

I’ve selected a Bordeaux Rosé for this dish as I feel the elegant, fruity complexity of the wine paired with the fruit and spice of this dessert will complement each other perfectly.

Hot pears with Roquefort and walnuts recipe

This is a recipe from the Michel Roux Jr and Bordeaux wine partnership

Pears, like apples, go well with lots of cheese because of their sweet and sour taste. This recipe could be eaten as a starter or a cheese course.

Serves 2

Hot Pears with Roquefort & WalnutsIngredients:

2 ripe pears, Williams or Passe-Crassane
120g Roquefort cheese, crumbled into pieces
60g walnuts, roughly chopped
1 tbsp crème fraîche
1 tbsp port
1 spring onion, sliced
Salt and pepper


  1. Take the pears and cut in half lengthways.
  2. Remove the seeds and core, then carefully scoop out some of the flesh without splitting the skin. This should leave you with 4 boats.
  3. Roughly chop the pear flesh and add to the crumbled cheese with the walnuts.
  4. Fold in the crème fraîche, port, spring onion and seasoning.
  5. Fill the boats and bake for 5 minutes to an oven at 180°C until brown.

My Bordeaux Wine Pick: Premières Côtes de Bordeaux

For this dish I would recommend a Premières Côtes de Bordeaux. It’s a much lighter style of sweet wine than Sauternes with delicious aromas and flavours of lemon sherbet. If you haven’t yet experienced the delight in your mouth when you drink sweet wine with salty Roquefort cheese, I urge you to give it a try.

Normandy-style roast mackerel recipe

This is a recipe from the Michel Roux Jr and Bordeaux wine partnership

Mackerel is an oily fish that is enhanced by the spice of the mustard and the sweet and sour apple.

Serves 4

Normandy Style Roast MackerelIngredients:

4 mackerel, about 300g each
2 tbsp Dijon mustard
2 tbsp vegetable oil
Salt and pepper
4 apples, Russet or Cox
2 shallots, peeled and sliced
6 white button mushrooms, washed and sliced
1 tbsp butter
250ml dry cider
125ml crème fraîche


  1. Ask your fishmonger to gut and remove the heads of the mackerel for you.
  2. Slash across the flesh on both sides 4 times and brush each fish with the mustard.
  3. Preheat the oven to 220ºC. On top of the stove, heat a non-stick fish pan or roasting tray big enough for the fish. Add the oil and when it’s smoking hot, gently place the fish in the pan.
  4. Lightly season and cook for a couple of minutes. Turn when nicely browned and cook for a couple of minutes more.
  5. Place in the hot oven for a further 4 minutes.
  6. Cut the apples into wedges, then ‘turn’ or give them a spherical shape. Keep the trimmings.
  7. When the fish is cooked, remove from the pan and set aside in a warm place.
  8. Return the pan to the top of the stove and sweat the shallots, apple trimmings and mushrooms with a knob of fresh butter for 2-3 minutes. Stir well, pour on the cider and reduce by half.
  9. Add the crème fraîche and again reduce by half. Check the seasoning, then press the sauce through a fine sieve.
  10. Pan fry the apple wedges in the remaining butter until golden and cooked.
  11. Serve with the mackerel and a drizzle of the sauce.

My Bordeaux Wine Pick: Graves

Dry white Bordeaux wines blended from Sauvignon Blanc and Semillon are crisp, dry with plenty of citrus fruit. With roast mackerel I would recommend a white from the Graves appellation, almost always aged in oak, the toasty, smoky notes of this wine will balance the wonderful flavours of this magnificent fish perfectly!