Serradura is Portuguese for “sawdust cake”. The recipe I’m giving you refers to it as Macanese (from Macau). It’s called sawdust because the biscuits that make layers between the rich cream are ground up to a fine powder like consistency. I like recipes that come together easily and taste great and my philosophy on desserts is they should be rich and decadent – this one fits the bill. My sister-in-law just returned from Goa and tried this dessert there and loved it. She is a great cook, so if she likes something, it usually tends to be good. I googled this and found it on a number of blog sites – basically the same recipe.

So in case you are wondering how I choose a recipe, it’s simple. I always read/skim the blog attached to the recipe, it tells you a lot about the recipe. If I find passion in the writing, then there is passion in the food – that’s usually the one I take. This one comes from a site called other thing I look for is comments from those that have tried making it. In some cases, they can be useful. Sometimes in the comments you will see others have changed it without actually making the original. I feel bad for the Chef who created the original recipe if no one is giving the original a try.  They add their own touch to it, making sure to comment on how much better it is than the original – but wait, they never made the original so…. I will always, at least stay to the intent of what the Chef had in mind, especially if I have not tasted or made the recipe before.  I think it’s a sure fire way to determine if the recipe is worth keeping or not. Seems to work for me.

I was true to this recipe with all the quantities and ingredients – the first time I made it. A test batch if you will – it was delicious, it didn’t last long. But being a Chef, you always want to improve on taste. So the second time – and really, how easy could this be – just 4 ingredients, I added chocolate (because everything is better with chocolate). It comes together in moments – it took longer to clean the processor and electric mixer than to make this dessert. I like that! Of course you don’t have to use a processor or mixer, the biscuits can be smashed in a plastic bag with a rolling pin and the cream can be whipped by hand (some of you have seen me do this in my classes – painful, but so rewarding eh Chef Josh!). To properly show this off, it should be done in individual glasses or dessert bowls as it is similar to a parfait, so layering with the cookie crumbs and whipped cream is key for the visual. I made it for a dinner party we were attending so I used a larger bowl, doubled the cream quantity – same idea, just not as visual.

Rich and decadent describe this dish quite well so you don’t need a big serving (although if you do decide on seconds, avoid stepping on that scale for a few days). Layered in a wine glass or scooped into a bowl, this will not disappoint. Try it! As always – enjoy!

250ml 35% cream
50 – 65ml – sweetened condensed milk – taste and adjust after 50 ml (about 3 tsps.)
15 – 20 Marie biscuits, finely ground in a processor, or crushed
5ml (1 tsp) vanilla
Optional – 50g Lindt dark chocolate

To a processor, add the biscuits and pulse to a fine powder (or to a bigger crumb stage)
add the chocolate and pulse to break down the chocolate into small crumb
Whip the cream, when it starts to thicken, add the condensed milk and vanilla, whip to the firm peak stage
Taste the whipped cream, add more condensed milk and continue to whip to firm peaks
Assembly (quantities are only if using a glass):
Sprinkle 1 tsp. of the chocolate biscuit mixture into the bottom of a wine glass
Top with 2 -3 tsp. of the whipped cream
Repeat until you get to the top, finish off with the chocolate crumb mixture
Add one or three berries on top just for garnish or plain grated chocolate
Refrigerate for at least 2 hours, remove from the fridge for 20 minutes before serving
Serve and enjoy!

Serradura 8
Serradura 3
Serradura 1