White Chocolate and Coconut Fruit Salad

Lisez cet article en français !

I love creating new desserts, especially when it means that I get to trick my boys into eating more fruit than they otherwise would.

One day I realized that we had apparently purchased too many bananas, apples and pears and that at the rate we were eating them, more than half would end up in the garbage. I detest wasting food so I set up shop in the kitchen to make a tasty, healthy snack. Here is what I came up with!


So much fruit at the end of its shelf life!

White Chocolate and Coconut Fruit Salad

Makes:                       4 to 6 servings

Preparation Time: 15 minutes from start to finish


  • 2 Apples
  • 2 Pears
  • 3 Bananas
  • 1 small bottle of cream
  • A pinch or two of sugar
  • 1/2 bar of White Chocolate with Coconuts from Lidl

 1. Peel and dice the fruit. Mix them all together.


2. Whip the cream until it becomes light and fluffy. Sweeten to taste with sugar.

3. Chop the white chocolate into bits.


4. Arrange your glasses and begin layering your ingredients. Place a good layer of chocolate at the bottom of the glass, add a layer of whipped cream, then fruit, repeat until the glass is full. Finish the presentation with a pretty layer of chopped chocolate on the very top.

The children loved it! Usually I really have to force them to eat their daily bit of fruit but they kept coming back for more until the bowl was empty. I made it again a week or so later for a family visit and my goddaughter was ever so happy to help me chop the fruit in the kitchen.
White Fruit Salad

Let me know if you come up with any tasty variations of this recipe !






Homemade Peanut Butter Cups

Lisez cet article en français

My husband is a very proud Belgian. Belgian fries are the best. Belgian beer can’t be beat. Belgian chocolates have no equal.


In the many years that we have been together, he has developed a weakness for a very American treat. He loves Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups more than just about anything.

Unfortunately, this happens to be one of the American goodies which is simply not available to your typical European. My family sends him PB cups for Christmas and his birthday, my friends on American Military bases know that the warmth of their welcome at our place depends on how many packages of PB cups they bring to pay for their stay.

Our supply is very limited and to be honest, what good is a husband if you can’t spoil them a bit and prove just how invaluable you are?

So I’ve done some research. I’ve looked at many copy cat PB cup recipes and I have finally figured out how to make them my own by cutting out the unnecessary ingredients until I was down to the three essentials!

Here is my recipe if you want to try your own hands at it.

Homemade Peanut Butter Cups


For the chocolate part:

200 g of Chocolate (I buy milk chocolate in large bars at Lidl)

1 tbsp of Peanut Butter (with the highest percentage of peanuts that you can find)

For the filling:

1 cup of Peanut Butter

1 cup of sifted Powdered Sugar (the sifting is important or you’ll get lumps later!)


Either a pair of double boilers or if you’ve got one, a crock pot for melting the ingredients

As many silicone mini-muffin cups as you can get your hands on

A flexible spatula

A teaspoon



Melt your ingredients. I prefer the crock pot method. Break the chocolate into little pieces and fill a clean glass jar. Stick your jar of chocolate and the open jar of peanut butter into the crock pot. Fill with water up to the rim of the shortest jar and set it on high until everything is melted.



Mix a tablespoon of the peanut butter into the melted chocolate



Use a teaspoon to coat the bottom and sides of the mini-muffin cups with the chocolate mixture leaving the rest in the crock pot to stay at a nice temperature for later



Refrigerate the muffin cups until the chocolate has set


While waiting for the chocolate to set, mix the melted peanut butter and the powdered sugar together. Put the mixture in a container which can go back into the crock pot to stay workable



When the chocolate shells are set, fill them with the melted peanut butter mixture using a teaspoon and stick back into the fridge for a bit longer



When the peanut butter has set, use your teaspoon to cover the cups with a last layer of chocolate and pop them back into the fridge


Once the cups are completely set, you can remove the silicone molds to wash and reuse


How many you make depends on the size of your cups as well as how full you fill them. I usually end up with about two dozen before I run out of one or the other ingredient.
You may want to keep the cups in the fridge if the weather is warm as they have a tendency to go a bit soft otherwise. You can easily keep a jar of chocolate and another of peanut butter mixture in the fridge ready to remelt to refill your stash as necessary!


Homemade Caramel Pralines

Lisez cette article en français

I promised you some recipes to use up your caramel and I keep my promises!

Before you can make these, you need to find something to use as a mold for your pralines.

I was lucky enough to inherit a box of baking tools from dear Marguerite-Marie, Philippe’s crafty great-aunt.

You can easily find similar molds at just about any home-baking supply store (if you’re in Belgium, go take a look at Aveve or even LeDiscount). If you can’t find molds then it’s time to be creative. Do you have a mini-muffin tin? Do you have a small ice-cube tray? Look around your house, I’m SURE you can find something with the right sized cavities.

It doesn’t get much easier than this recipe, trust me!

Homemade Caramel Pralines



  • 200 g Milk or Dark Chocolate
  • Whatever you have left of your Sea Salted Butter Caramel, I was down to about a fifth of my original batch but it was more than enough to make almost 20 pralines


  • Double Boiler or Crockpot (the crock pot makes this recipe much easier)
  • Chocolate molds
  • Various spoons



Break the chocolate into chunks and fill a glass jar


Place the jar of chocolate and the jar of caramel in the crock pot, fill with water just to the rim of the shortest jar and turn on low.


When the ingredients are melted, use a teaspoon to coat the bottom and the sides of the molds. Refrigerate.



When the chocolate is set, use a teaspoon to carefully fill the cavities with the melted caramel. You can always add more but it is difficult to remove without messing up the chocolate shell so don’t put too much. When you’ve filled all the cavities on a mold, put it back in the fridge.



When the caramel is firm, use a teaspoon to cover the cavities on the mold. Try to keep the outline clean by not putting TOO much chocolate. Refrigerate



When the final layer of chocolate is set, take them out of the fridge and pop them out of the molds. Personally, I found these white plastic molds to be rather hard to empty. I’m going to be keeping my eyes open for flexible silicone molds to replace them. If you have the same problem as I did, try putting the mold into the freezer overnight and then blasting the backside (don’t get the chocolate wet!) with some hot water.


All in all, I got about 20 caramel filled pralines and even though my husband took them to nibble on in bed last night I still have a few to offer to my colleagues today. Sweet!


Sea Salted Butter Caramel – Easier than you think!

Lisez cet article en français

If the title of this recipe doesn’t make you start drooling a little then who are you?!

I love caramel. If some stranger had stood up at my wedding with an offer of a lifetime supply of caramel if I left my fiancé, I cannot promise that I would be Mrs. Bourlart right now. Granted, I’d have made sure I could share my lifetime of caramel with Phil before taking the deal. He’s logical enough that he’d see the benefit, I assure you!

Phil tried to make a caramel tart a few weeks ago but his caramel came out more solid than he wanted. He told me that the recipe sounded simple but was harder than it looked. I took the bait and started researching caramel recipes. Finally, I found one that looked easy enough and I tried my hand at it. It turned out delicious but the texture seemed a bit too thick for me. I found that if you add the sea salt too soon, the caramel will start to crystallize around it leading to too-salty chunks floating in your caramel. By the third attempt, I was no longer looking at the recipe and after a while, I realized that even that recipe was more complicated than it had to be.

That’s part of the joy of baking, for me, the implicit understanding that a new recipe requires trial and error.

The best part of baking is that permission to fail Is built right In. All bakers understand that the first few times you try a recipe it will be less than perfect. You need to test how your particular oven reacts to it. If what you’re making requires yeast to do their magic, then only experience will teach you if your recipe can succeed in the current meteorological conditions. The Ingredients you’ve purchased are unlikely to be the same as those used by the recipe’s creator.

Over time you’ll find you put your own spin on things. For example, I take a strange pleasure in cutting out all of the nonessential ingredients to have the simplest, most fool-proof recipe possible so I can actually memorise it and don’t have to look it up every time I want to make some.

However, this caramel was a special lesson for myself. I’ve made it dozens of times and I keep learning new tricks. If I wait until the sugar has completely melted before stirring it, I don’t get any clumps in the finished caramel! If I add the sea salt too early, the caramel forms crystals around it. If I microwave it, the ingredients separate. You can only learn these things through trial and error.

Bakers, both hobbyists and professionals all understand this one unspoken rule:

Failure is an essential part of the process, but it must never be the final step.

So, now I present you with an unbelievably easy, no thermometer, no timer, very little measuring required recipe for your very own Sea Salted Butter Caramel. You’re welcome.

Sea-Salted Butter Caramel


1 c White Sugar (210 g) 1 tsp Sea Salt (5 g) 1 package butter (250 g) cut into chunks 1 small bottle of cream (200 ml)

July 9th 2020 Update: I made a batch of caramel yesterday and I realised something spectacular:

You can substitute and vary your ingredients with hardly any negative effects on the caramel, only positive surprises! I didn’t have enough white sugar so I ended up replacing about half of the amount with raw cane sugar and the bottles of cream in the fridge this week are 250ml instead of the usual 200ml. It made no difference!

This caramel was darker, richer and creamier than earlier batches but equally delicious! If you substitute or adapt the recipe, please comment below with what you did and what the results were, I’m very curious to see how it works out for you.

Tools needed:

A frying pan A wooden spoon A random spoon for scraping the sugar from the wooden spoon



Heat the sugar on medium heat until it is fully melted and turns brown. It takes a while to start melting so you can go get a coffee while you wait but as soon as the melting begins you have to stay close because it can go from melted to burnt in a matter of seconds.

Melt the sugar on medium heat


Once the sugar is mostly melted, add the butter. Stir gently until the bubbling dies down as the butter and sugar reach the same temperature. Mix the sugar and butter together until you can’t tell the difference anymore.

The butter and the sugar will bubble until their temperatures even out


Drizzle in the cream. Stir until it stops bubbling and you can’t see the separate ingredients.

Keep mixing the cream in until it stops bubbling once again


Remove from heat and allow to cool for a few minutes.

Remove from heat when the bubbling has nearly stopped


Once it has cooled enough to where you can touch the caramel safely, sprinkle in the sea salt and stir some more.

Once it's cooled down a bit, sprinkle the salt over it and stir gently


Allow it to continue to cool but come back every few minutes to stir the caramel or all of your butter will try to float to the top.

All done!

  • Once it is just a little warmer than body temperature you can put it into a jar.
  • To make it even more presentable, sprinkle a few grains of sea salt on top of the cooled caramel before closing the jar.
  • Store it in the fridge so that the cream and butter don’t go bad.

Never heat it in the microwave!

If you need to heat your caramel for whatever reason, put some in a pan and warm it on the stove. Otherwise the ingredients are likely to separate in the microwave.

 Sea salted butter caramel

How can you use your caramel?

  • Drizzled over ice cream
  • Dip apple slices in it for snacktime
  • As a topping for pancakes, crepes, toast, or rice cakes
  • Make some homemade pralines
  • As an ingredient in other recipes (oh yes, I will be giving you some, don’t worry!)
  • Melt a spoonful into your coffee, tea or hot chocolate to spoil yourself
  • Put a layer of caramel on top of pudding or yogurt
  • Eat it by the spoonfull when you’re too lazy to make something to eat… you can always make more!
  • Bribe your spouse, children or neighbors into doing your will in exchange for some.