Poached strawberries with spiced biscuits and honey labna

Neil Perry
Spice up your next tea or party-time sweet offering.
Spice up your next tea or party-time sweet offering. Photo: William Meppem

Some spice, some crunch, some creamy sweet yoghurt, berries and syrup: this dessert is so lovely it'd be churlish not to go back for seconds ... If strawberries are not available or not to your liking, substitute them with raspberries or blueberries, or a combination thereof.


185g unsalted butter, chopped, at room temperature

90g icing mixture, plus extra for dusting

1/4 tsp orange blossom water

250g plain flour, plus extra for rolling

1/4 tsp ground cinnamon

1/4 tsp baking powder

pinch of fine sea salt

35g almonds, finely chopped

1 cup castor sugar

400g strawberries, hulled and halved

10 small basil leaves

2-3 tbsp honey

350g plain unsalted labneh


Preheat the oven to 170C. in a large bowl, using an electric beater set on medium speed, beat butter, icing mixture and orange blossom water until light and fluffy (about 2 minutes). Add flour, cinnamon, baking powder and salt and beat to combine, then stir in almonds.

Using floured hands, roll dough into balls about 3-4cm in diameter. place balls 2.5cm apart on trays lined with baking paper and flatten slightly to a diameter of about 4.5cm. bake biscuits until they are pale gold and set (about 15-20 minutes). Transfer baking sheets to wire racks to cool, then dust biscuits with icing sugar.

Combine castor sugar with a cup of water in a pan and stir over medium heat until dissolved. Add strawberries and basil, stir, then remove from heat and allow to cool to room temperature.

Stir honey through labneh.

Serve the strawberries, using a slotted spoon, with the honey labneh and spiced biscuits.

Food photography by William meppem. Food styling by Hannah Meppem. Food preparation by Alice Story.