Happy Vesak Day to those celebrating the birth, enlightenment and final nirvana of Buddha. Prince Siddartha Gautama as he was originally known left all his worldly pleasures in search of the true meaning of human life. His compassion, wisdom and power are completely beyond conception. Such in our daily life that we see so much suffering each day, we read them in the newspapers, or internet, humans, animals, nature alike and some are beyond our control when Mother Nature takes over and decide to unleash her anger on Earth. Such as the last major catastrophy that fell upon Japan. That was really upsetting and depressing when you read each day about the devastation and there is nothing much you can do except to try and see what you can do to help through the different channels that have been set up to give aid. I believe Japan is strong and can pull through it, it will be a long process but slowly and surely. I have Japanese friends and I am very glad that their families are fine.
Sometimes you go through life each day and wonder why do you work so hard and do overtime, get your salary and pay all your taxes and bills, when there are people living in villages or remote areas, having simple stuff like grow their own vegetables organically and aging gracefully. Us city dwellers with our stress and smog, which is why you sometimes read people having heart failures or weird illnesses at middle age 30s to 50s when they have no records of any health issues throughout their adult life. I always find people who have little just want to share with you what they have when they have not much but people who have plenty just become more self centred, well gladly not all of them. There are some people in this world who do selfless acts of kindness that need to be applauded for. They go beyond and outside their comfort zone just to reach out. Sometimes you ask yourself are you happy? If yes why, if no why? I guess happiness differs amongst us all, and through various ways. Okkkkkkkkkkkk…..am in a very touchy feely mood today I guess. Today is also the day my hubby says I should not be doing anything in the kitchen, as we are going out in the evening, plus I should rest because I have bake orders to do for the weekend. I am also thinking, sshhhheeessssh… I think am having withdrawal symptoms for not doing anything, my fingers are itching to get something cooking when reading about food. I suppose this dessert I posted should be dedicated for Japan, lovely colors like the flag that stands strongly, and like the people who strive. Its a lovely dessert actually concocted from another which I decided to change and make it my own. Simple to make not much fuss. Its also very pretty and when you are so pressed for time you can make this ahead and refrigerate. On that topic of happiness, if anyone were to ask me if I am happy, my answer would be “Yes”. I am contented with what I have, with what I cook or bake each day, good friends who still remember to be in touch and a lovely husband who does his selfless acts of not having me do anything on some days and shower me with lots of love. That, to me is happiness itself.
Raspberry Jelly with Lychee and Longan Trifle serves 4:
1 box raspberry jelly of your choice (make according to instructions)
1 can of longans (or fresh if you can get them)
1 can lychees (or fresh)
250g mascarpone cheese
100g whipping cream ( I use Arla or Emborg)
80g caster sugar
1 pack savoiardi sponge fingers
Some fresh raspberries to decorate
1. Place both lychees and longans in a large bowl and strain water.
2. Put some longans or lychees in individual glasses or a glass bowl of your choice. (I placed 1 lychee and 4 longans per glass.
3. Make raspberry jelly according to instructions behind box. Coll slightly and pour into the glasses prepared or bowl. Refrigerate until firm or you can place in a blast chiller for 15mins.
4. Meanwhile using a hand held mixer or standing mixer, whisk mascarpone cheese, sugar and whipping cream, until fluffy and creamy. Texture should be like making tiramisu but minus the eggs.
5. When raspberry jelly is chilled through take them out and break savoiardi sponge fingers according to size and place them over the raspberry jelly. Then layer with mascarpone cheese mixture and top with fresh raspberries. Serve immediately or chill until ready to serve.
FoodNote: you can drizzle with some raspberry coulis on the sponge fingers if you like or sprinkle the mascarpone with red coloured sugar for that special touch. If you wish to have the mascarpone mixture to be more of a lighter drizzly texture then add more cream accordingly. Enjoy peeps!