Cornmeal-Almond Cake with Strawberries and Mascarpone
This buttery cornmeal cake contains more than a half-pound of toasted almonds, giving it an excellent, nutty flavor. Instead of using plain whipped cream as a topping, chef Mike Lata whips a combination of cream and mascarpone for a bit of tanginess.
Cake flour is the secret ingredient in this lusciously light shortcake. Make sure that you use pure cake flour as opposed to self-rising cake flour, which is similarly packaged. This dessert is at its best within 30 minutes of assembly.
Spiced Rhubarb Soup with Vanilla Ice Cream
This silky fruit dessert is delicious on its own or topped with vanilla ice cream. Just be sure to only barely cook the rhubarb, so that it retains its crispness—and plenty of tangy flavor.
Yigit Pura perfected this crisp-creamy French dessert while working at restaurant Daniel in New York City. His updated version combines little lime meringue kisses with basil ice cream and sweet mango sorbet.
Rhubarb-Cheese Strudel with Vanilla Sauce
Strudel is a classic Austrian pastry made by wrapping layers of paper-thin dough around a variety of fillings. This simplified version, made with store-bought phyllo dough, features a cheesecake-like mixture and tangy rhubarb compote. A crème anglaise served alongside makes it extra-decadent.
Strawberry-and-Wild-Fennel Compote with Pound Cake
Pastry chef Bill Corbett of Absinthe Brasserie & Bar in San Francisco harvests his own fennel pollen for this dessert by hanging wild fennel flowers upside down; as they dry, the pollen falls into a container below.
Cherry Lambic Crisps
Chef Phillip Kirschen-Clark uses beer in everything from cocktails to desserts. Kriek—lambic beer fermented with cherries—intensifies the fruit flavors in these crisps.
Apricots and Plums Poached in Rosé Wine
While visiting Spain's Navarra region, Alex Raij saw fruit trees growing in a parcel of Garnacha vines. To pay homage to the mixed plot, she plucked apricots and plums and poached them in a rosé made from Garnacha grapes.
Tropical Fruit Cobbler with Coconut Macaroon Topping
Adam Perry Lang wanted to play on the idea of a macaroon in this clever dessert, so he turned the cookie into a fluffy meringue with toasted coconut and ground almonds, which he then uses to top a juicy mixture of pineapple and mango.
Cherries Poached in Red Wine with Mascarpone Cream
Thick mascarpone cheese mixed with honey makes a luscious topping for poached cherries. You can serve the dessert either warm or cold. We love it both ways.