The best thing about this little gem of a recipe is its simplicity. There is nothing really precise about it – it’s just layer upon layer of deliciousness. You can’t go wrong.
Makes: one 20cm (8 inch) layered crêpe cake
1 quantity watermelon and rose jam
1 quantity Chantilly cream
1 x crêpe stack
Fresh raspberries, yellow nasturtiums, roses, baby rocket (arugula) leaves, jasmine flowers
Prepare the watermelon and rose jam.
Prepare the chantilly cream.
Prepare the crêpe stack.
To assemble the crêpe cake, place one crêpe on a stand or serving plate and smear about one tablespoon of the jam over it, spreading it right to the edges. Spread with a layer of Chantilly cream. Top with another crêpe and repeat the process until all the crêpes have been used. When you get to the last crêpe, spoon a few tablespoons of jam onto the centre, top with the remaining Chantilly cream and berries, and arrange the flowers and leaves on top.
Watermelon and rose jam
I don’t know a soul who doesn’t delight in the old-school charm of this jam, or
who hasn’t been hypnotised by its aroma. Bottle it up for gifts that will delight.
Makes: 500g (2 cups)
600g ripe watermelon flesh, chopped
400g caster (superfine) sugar
juice of 1 lemon
small handful organic rose petals or rosewater to taste
Place the watermelon in a bowl and sprinkle it with the sugar and lemon juice. Cover and stand for at least four hours, or overnight if possible. Transfer the watermelon mixture to a heavy-based saucepan and bring to the boil over
medium heat. Reduce the heat to low and simmer, stirring regularly for one hour. Using a hand-held blender, process the mixture until as smooth or chunky as you desire. When ready, the jam will be quite thin, but should resist sliding down a plate if you hold it upright. Stir in the petals or rosewater and pour the hot jam into sterilised jars. Refrigerate for up to two weeks.
Chantilly cream is a traditional filling that a lot of people find hard to go past, especially when accompanied with strawberries. It goes with everything!
500ml (2 cups) thickened (whipping) cream
2 tablespoons icing (confectioners’) sugar, sifted
1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste or natural vanilla extract
Using an electric mixer, beat the cream, sugar and vanilla on high speed until soft peaks form. Use it to fill or top the cake of your choice.
Based on a decadent classic French cake, this is a real treat. Although it looks impressive, it’s actually quite easy to make. The flavour of the crêpe stack makes a great neutral base to build on.
Makes: one 20cm (8 inch) crêpe stack (about 12 crêpes)
60g unsalted butter, plus extra for frying
300g (2 cups) plain (all-purpose) flour
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
Melt the butter in a small saucepan over low heat, then set aside. Place the flour, milk and beaten eggs in a bowl and use a hand-held whisk to combine well. Strain through a fine sieve into a pitcher, then stir in the melted butter.
Heat a 20cm (8 inch) crêpe pan or non-stick frying pan over medium heat. Add a little butter and, when foaming, add 60-80ml batter or just enough to cover the base. Immediately tilt the pan to coat the base with batter. Cook for one minute or until the crêpe is light golden on the edges, then turn and cook for another 30 seconds. Remove from the pan and repeat with the remaining batter, stacking the crêpes on a plate as you go, with a sheet of baking paper between each crêpe. Allow to cool.