Back To Basics: Sweet

Published: 29 June 2018

MasterChef Australia

As Sweet Week comes to a close, we put together some basic sweet recipes that you need to learn ASAP...

Jess’ Sweet Crust Pastry

Jess has proven to be one of this season's dessert gurus, with the judges going so far as to say that she produced one of the best sweet crust pastries presented in the MasterChef kitchen. Don't believe the hype? Try it for yourself. 

Sweet Crust Pastry 

- 250g plain flour

- 100g icing sugar 

- pinch salt 

- 150g cold butter

- 1 egg, beaten

1. Preheat oven to 180C. 

2. For the Sweet Crust Pastry, place eight 2.5cm high x 8cm round ring moulds and place on a baking tray lined with baking paper. 

3. Place the flour, sugar, salt and butter in a food processor. Blend until it resembles coarse breadcrumbs. Add the egg and process until just combined. Divide dough into 8 balls and place one in each ring mould. Press dough out over base and up the sides evenly and thinly to create a pastry shell. Trim excess pastry and prick the bases with a fork. Place in freezer for 20 minutes. 

4. Line pastry shells with baking paper then baking beads and place in oven to blind bake for 15 minutes. Remove paper and beads and bake until golden and crisp, about another 10 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside to cool until required. 

Try Jess’ Lime Tart with Brazil Nut Praline 

MasterChef Australia

Hoda’s Homemade Phyllo (Filo) Pastry

Hoda has produced beautiful desserts over the season, with the judges raving about her perfect pastry in her audition dish. It's a tricky thing to master, but with the help of Hoda's recipe you'll be making phyllo pastry like a pro in no time. 

Phyllo (Filo) 

- 2 cups plain flour, plus extra for dusting

- ¼ cup pure olive oil 

- 1 tbsp white vinegar 

- 200ml cold water 

- pinch salt 

- 2 tbsp cornflour

1. Place flour, olive oil, vinegar and salt in a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook attachment. Mix ingredients together, then with the mixer still running, add water in a slow and steady stream and continue to mix until the mixture comes together and comes away from the sides of the bowl. Continue to knead dough in the mixer until dough is smooth and has an elastic texture, about 3 minutes.

2. Dust a clean work surface with a mixture of cornflour and flour (equal parts). Turn out dough onto the dusted work surface and knead for 30 seconds then shape the dough into a ball. Cover in plastic wrap and leave on the bench to for 10 minutes. 

3. Divide rested dough into 8 portions. Using a pasta roller machine, roll out dough starting on the thickest setting, passing it through 3 times before reducing the thickness, one setting at a time, until you reach the thinnest setting.

Try Hoda’s Znoud El Sit 

Kristen’s Honeycomb 

Kristen's Honeycomb has made an appearance more than once during the season, being used to compliment desserts that she has created. Once you've learnt Kristen's secret to Honeycomb, you won't know how to create a dessert without including it! 


- 208g caster sugar

- 75g glucose syrup

- 32g honey

- 35g water

- 9g bi-carbonate of soda

1. For the Honeycomb, line a deep, 17.5cm square tin with baking paper.

2. Place the caster sugar, glucose syrup, honey and water into a medium saucepan and place over a low-medium heat. Stir to until the sugar has dissolved and then bring to the boil. Continue to cook until the mixture reaches 160C. Remove from heat, add bi-carbonate of soda and whisk quickly to dissolve. Working gently but quickly, pour into the prepared tin and set aside to cool.

3. Once completely cool and set, use a serrated knife to trim the outer edges away. Break remaining honeycomb into chunks and set aside in an airtight container.

Try Kristen’s Cinnamon Whiskey Ice Cream, Chocolate Mousse, Honeycomb and Whiskey Caramel Sauce 

Samira’s Saffron and Vanilla Ice-Cream

Samira knows that being able to make the perfect ice-cream is a necessary skill to have in the MasterChef kitchen. Samira's classic Ice-Cream with a Saffron twist was the perfect accompaniment to her desserts and we're sure it will become the newest staple in your household.   

Saffron and Vanilla Ice-Cream

- 1 cup milk 

- 1 cup cream 

- Pinch saffron threads 

- 2 vanilla bean, split in half lengthways and seeds scraped 

- 4 egg yolks 

- 100g caster sugar

1. Pour milk and cream into a saucepan, add saffron, vanilla bean and seeds and place over medium heat. Bring to a gentle simmer then remove from heat.

2. Meanwhile, whisk egg yolks and sugar in a bowl until light and fluffy. 

3. Pour hot milk mixture into the egg yolks while whisking constantly. Return mixture back into the saucepan and set over medium heat. Cook, stirring, until mixture reaches 82C. 

4. Remove from heat and strain into a bowl set over the ice bath. Whisk until cold then pour into bowl of ice cream machine. Churn according to manufacturer’s instructions then place ice cream into the freezer until firm and ready to serve.

Try Samira’s Pistachio Cake with Saffron and Vanilla Ice-Cream 

MasterChef Australia

Chloe's Choux Pastry

Chloe has been crowned the queen of choux, wowing the judges with both her Lemon Merignue Choux and her and Kristen's Pistachio and Coffee, Cardamom and Chocolate Croquembouche

Choux Pastry

- 100g milk 

- 100g butter 

- 2g salt 

- 2g sugar 

- 100g flour 

- 200g whole egg (about 4 eggs)

1. Combine milk, butter, salt, sugar and 100g water in a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Remove from heat, add flour and mix until a smooth dough forms. Return the saucepan to heat and stir until dough pulls away from the sides of the saucepan.

2. Remove from heat, place in a stand mixer, fitted with a paddle attachment and mix until most of the steam had evaporated. Add the egg, a little at a time, beating well between additions, until the mixture is smooth and glossy. Transfer to a piping bag fitted with 1 cm round nozzle. 

3. Pipe 30 x 5cm rounds of dough onto a baking tray lined with baking paper. 

4. Remove sable from freezer and peel off top sheet of baking paper. Using a 5cm diameter biscuit cutter, cut disks of dough and place them on top of the piped choux. 

5. Place into the oven to bake until puffed and beginning to brown, about 20 minutes. Open oven door to release the steam then close door. Continue to bake until golden brown, about 5-10 minutes. 

6. Remove from oven and using a knife, pierce the base of each choux. Set aside on a wire rack to cool.

Try Chloe's Lemon Meringue Choux