I’d been planning and creating the Dessert Bar menu for AGES; like some of the ideas I had go back years. Every time I’d have an idea I’d put it in the notes section on my phone - as you can see in the photo - and this is only half of it.
Some ideas would just sit there and some would HAVE to be tried immediately and I’d get obsessed with perfecting them.
Some would get put on the back burner because I’d get new ideas that needed to be attended to and some would keep me up all hours of the night experimenting.
Part of me would fret that i needed to complete an idea before moving on to the next but the other part knew that I would always come back to them when the time was right. I have complete trust in the process of creation; even though I sometimes try to fight it and control it.
Pretty much at any given time my head was filled with a heap of different sweet ideas and elements waiting to be paired with their perfect match.
Like our famous Choc Rocks. I came up with the idea of Choc Rocks as I needed a way to use up the off cuts of ice cream from our Ice cream sandwiches (waste not, want not).
I knew I was gonna coat the ice cream pieces in chocolate and call them Choc Rocks but I also needed a sauce and a topping for texture. Sauce options were Salted Caramel or Cinnamon Caramel (both bloody amazing which didn’t make it easy) and I was envisioning freeze-dried raspberries as the topping, because pink and on-brand; but when I put it together the raspberries just didn’t work. They gave a pop of colour for sure but not enough texture and the tartness didn’t pair well with the bitterness of the dark chocolate - I needed something sweeter and crunchier. Instantly it came to me (the Coconut Brittle did) and I actually couldn’t believe I hadn’t thought of it sooner. This always happens by the way: the greatest ideas are usually the ones right in front of us but sometimes we don’t see them straight way.
Coconut Brittle was a recipe I came up with early last year when I was on maternity leave. It was that good that I considered selling it by the bag (this may still happen!) I knew that that was what the Choc Rocks needed and when I put the whole dish together for my husband and I to test it literally blew our socks off. My husband is not one to get excited over desserts but he was blown away. Choc Rocks are now one of our most iconic desserts.
The last dish I added to the menu was the Brownie Bliss. This would have to be my personal fave, even though I don’t like playing favourites with my desserts. I created the Beetroot Orange Ice Cream a few years ago and was obsessed with it. I did countless trials of it to get the balance and flavours right. I really wanted it on the menu but wondered how many people would be put off when they saw the word beetroot, so it went on the back burner and I worked on the rest of my ideas. When it came to finalising the menu I knew it was missing something - I knew I had to have brownie on there. I instantly had the a vision of the Brownie with the Beetroot Orange Ice Cream and Raspberry Coulis (another element floating around waiting for a home), then it was just a matter of texture and that’s when Beetroot Wafers came into play - which funnily enough I’d never even tried or made before but I knew they would work. This was literally a few weeks out from launching the Dessert Bar and I knew at that point the menu was complete. When you know you know.
**When something finally comes together it’s such a weight off for me as I carry all these different ideas and elements around in my mind waiting for them to manifest into the amazing dishes that i know they will.