Wednesday, 25 April 2012

The Sweets Kitchen

What a happy place the Sweets Kitchen is at the Ballymaloe House!  This kitchen is where all the desserts and sweets for the restaurant are made and JR runs the show with Anne.  I spent three days there 'helping', and learned a lot about sugar and why Ballymaloe House does things the way they do.

Caramel Fudge
Almond Squares
Chocolate Clusters
Chocolate Truffles
Nougat (which you'd love mum!!)
French chocolate cake
Rhubarb Fool
Lemon Tart
Rum Savarin
Gateau Pithiviers
Creme Brulee
Apple Pie
Chocolate mousse souffle
A selection of roulades including:
Lemon meringue
Banana and butterscotch
House-made ice-cream (which uses a gallon of cream) with flavours like:
Praline (sugary crushed up almonds)
and many more!

I got to make fudge which was very simple but involved a lot of stirring towards the end to get that lovely smooth and creamy texture (if you don't stir you get a more granuley texture), the filling for the Lemon Tart, Chocolate Clusters, finish the Banana Butterscotch Roulades and taste-test things like the Rosewater Marshmallow, Nougat and other mixtures.

Banana Butterscotch Roulade

Chocolate mousse souffle
The Sweets trolley loaded up

Bakewell tart

As we use a lot of the produce from the Ballymaloe gardens JR obviously does seasonal dishes and so a lot of the fruit-flavoured things have had rhubarb in them.  We went to the gardens a few times and picked loads, using the correct technique of course (twist and pull!) and prepared it as pictured, you can see the amazing colour for yourself!

I would love to do a few more days in that kitchen and try my hand at some pastry as JR even makes his own puff pastry and there's quite an art to it.  Perhaps late on in the year when there's more fruit available in the garden and so more flavours to use...


  1. oh gem when you get home, i want some lessons!!!

  2. it all looks delicious Gem! I would be so tempted to "taste test" it all hehe
    Marcela xo

  3. Oh we will definately have to get together and have a baking day or two!! Ps. I did 'taste test' EVERYTHING!!! which is why, ahem, I am now trying to lose weight!!! :-)