#CelebrateSummer: Cool Desserts From Around The World

by | March 24, 2021, 8:28 IST

Summer desserts from around the world


Cool down in the sweltering heat of summer by trying these desserts from all around the world.

The #CelebrateSummer series is part of our virtual food-and-drink festival, Indulge Fest. Join us on the microsite now!

This summer, while we might not be jet setting around the world on our foodie adventures, we can definitely bring the delicious dishes from our favourite destinations home. Nothing screams ‘summer’ more than cold and refreshing desserts that make the sweltering season bearable. Every country has its own favourite when it comes to summer desserts. So join us as we take a mouth-watering trip to Australia for pavlova, hop over to France for cooling sorbets, and make various pit stops along the way before signing off with a sweet surprise in Korea.

Cool Dessert 1 : Pavlova from Australia and New Zealand


Image: shutterstock

Both Australia and New Zealand claim to be where the pavlova originated. This dessert is a cloud of baked meringue topped with generous dollops of whipped cream and seasonal fruit. Crisp and sweet meringue on the outside, marshmallow-like on the inside, the pavlova offers the perfect contrast to tart summer fruits like mangoes and passionfruit. It’s an ideal dessert for summer - light and fresh. Take a bite and you’ll be smitten!


2 egg whites

½ cup castor sugar

1 ½ tsp cornflour

½ tsp vanilla essence

½ tsp lemon juice or white vinegar

100 ml non-dairy whipping cream, sweetened

Passionfruit pulp and chopped mango, for topping



  1. Preheat the oven to 170° C.
  2. Clean a mixing bowl using vinegar or lemon juice to remove any traces of fat.
  3. Place the egg whites in the mixing bowl, and start whisking at low speed for two minutes. Gradually increase the speed to medium and whisk until soft peaks are achieved.
  4. Gradually add the castor sugar while whisking constantly, until all the sugar is dissolved and combined.
  5. Add the cornflour, vanilla essence, and lemon juice or vinegar to the whipped eggs. Gently fold the mixture to avoid deflating.
  6. Line a baking tray with parchment paper and scoop out the meringue mixture into a rough dome; it doesn’t have to  be precise.
  7. Bake the pavlova at 170° C for 15 minutes, then reduce the temperature to 150° C, and bake for another 35 to 45 minutes until the meringue is dry to the touch and pale in colour. Turn off the oven, and let the pavlova cool inside for a few minutes. Take the pavlova out to cool completely. 
  8. Meanwhile, whip the cream to soft peaks. Add it to the middle of the pavlova and garnish with passionfruit pulp and chopped mangoes, serve immediately. 

Recipe: Chef Parth Bajaj

Cool Dessert 2 : Affogato from Italy


Image: shutterstock

Italians know their desserts well, and it shows in the deceptively simple yet spectacularly delicious affogato. Two simple ingredients - vanilla gelato and espresso – come together to create a creamy and irresistible dish. Since good gelato is hard to find outside of Italy, good ol’ vanilla ice cream does the trick. The hot and cold contrast takes it over the edge and the dessert is a tempting sweet ending to an elegant summer soiree. 


2 scoops vanilla ice cream

2 shots espresso

Shaved chocolate or chocolate chips, to garnish


  1. Add one scoop of vanilla ice cream each to two serving bowls or glasses.
  2. Pour a shot of hot espresso on top in  each bowl.
  3. Garnish with shaved chocolate or chocolate chips and serve immediately.

Cool Dessert 3 : Panna Cotta from Italy

Summer Desserts - Mango Panna Cotta
Image: Shutterstock

Another Italian classic is the refreshing and luscious panna cotta. Translating to ‘cooked cream’ in Italian, the scrumptious dessert has a sweet base of cream cooked with gelatin, so the result is a delicious cross between a mousse and a flan. The world is your oyster when it comes to flavours, but, in this recipe, juicy mangoes are the unmistakable star. Serve this stylish summer dessert at your next dinner and watch everyone swoon!


2 tbsp water

2 tsp gelatin powder

500 ml single cream

50 g sifted icing sugar

100 g mango purée 

Vegetable oil for greasing moulds/ cups


  1. Place the water in a bowl and sprinkle the gelatin powder over. Set aside for five minutes until the gelatin absorbs water. 
  2. Gently heat the cream along with the sugar in a pan. Add the bloomed gelatin, and cook for one to two minutes, stirring continuously until the gelatin is dissolved completely. Strain the mixture and let it cool. 
  3. To the cooled cream mixture, add the mango purée and mix thoroughly to combine. 
  4. Lightly grease four half-cup capacity moulds with vegetable oil, and carefully pour in the panna cotta mixture. Refrigerate for four to six hours or until firm. 
  5. Remove the panna cotta from the fridge a few minutes before serving and unmould gently into a serving dish.

Recipe: Chef Rajesh Shetty, In-flight Chef, Etihad Airways

Cool Dessert 4 : Trifle from the UK


Image: shutterstock

Trifle is as quintessentially English as the Britons’ unabashed love for tea and biscuits. The summer dessert is a versatile dish that adapts well to a variety of flavours. Here, it is paired with creamy bananas for a tempting dessert. Thick, unctuous custard and light whipped cream are layered in a glass dish along with sliced bananas, crunchy biscuits and a drizzle of agave syrup to create a show-stopping dessert that will be the highlight of any meal.


200 ml whipping cream

500 g custard

150 g biscuits of choice, crushed
2 bananas, sliced + extra to garnish

75 g agave syrup, or golden syrup


  1. Whip the cream with a whisk until soft peaks form and the mixture doubles in volume. Gently fold in the custard until combined well.
  2. Layer half of the crushed biscuits in the bottom of a large serving dish and then pour half of the cream-custard mixture on top of them.
  3. On top of the custard, layer half of the banana slices and drizzle some of the agave or golden syrup.
  4. Repeat the layers of biscuit, custard, bananas and agave syrup once more.
  5. Refrigerate for an hour or until chilled. Garnish with more sliced bananas and serve. 

Cool Dessert 5 : Sorbet from France


Image: shutterstock

Nothing is more refreshing on a hot summer day than a bowl of sorbet. With no dairy, sorbet is the lighter and brighter cousin of ice cream. While it might have originated in Persia, sorbet has since been enthusiastically adopted by the French and features heavily in their summer diets. This lemon sorbet packs a zingy punch and will be impossible to have just one scoop of. What’s more, you don’t even need to bother with an ice- cream maker to prepare this frozen dessert, just some elbow grease. 


2 cups water

2 cups sugar

2 tbsp freshly-grated lemon zest

2 cups freshly- squeezed lemon juice


  1. In a saucepan over a medium flame, bring the water and sugar to a boil and cook until the sugar dissolves (about one minute). Remove the saucepan from the flame, and allow it to cool. Stir in the lemon juice and lemon zest, and combine thoroughly, then pour into a square or loaf tin. 
  2. Wrap tightly with clingfilm so that it touches the surface of the sorbet mixture, and freeze until set (about three to four hours). For a smoother consistency, stir the sorbet every 30 to 40 minutes to avoid big ice crystals from forming. Keep frozen until ready to serve. 

Cool Dessert 6 : Patbingsu from Korea


Image: shutterstock

A Korean favourite,
patbingsu - which translates to shaved ice with red beans - is a light summer dessert. Traditionally, fresh shaved ice is topped with a red bean paste, but, recently, more and more toppings have found their way onto patbingsu, from chewy sweet rice cakes (mochi) to more unconventional items like ice cream and chopped fruit. Either way, the toothsome dessert comes together quickly and is a fun and tasty way to celebrate summer!


2 heaping cups shaved ice

4 tbsp condensed milk, cold

Desired toppings like adzuki beans, chopped fruit, ice cream, mochi


  1. Put two serving bowls in the freezer to chill. 
  2. Meanwhile, shave the ice in a food processor and blend until it resembles slush. 
  3. Immediately transfer the shaved ice to the chilled bowls and top with the condensed milk and other toppings of choice. 
  4. Serve chilled. 

Images used for representational purposes only

Also see: 5 Indian Desserts to Cool Down With 

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