Summer is upon us and soft fruit is at its best and can be bought very cheaply. Whilst I absolutely love a fruit salad served with a little Greek yogurt and honey, sometimes you need something a little bit more decadent…
This recipe below is a little gem and is very easy to make. The longest part of the whole process is waiting for the cake to cook and cool. So if time is tight I would suggest making the cake the day before and leaving to cool overnight. Whilst I have suggested that you use nectarines and pomegranate seeds for the topping, many other fruits would work just as well.
Alternative topping ideas:
- peaches and redcurrants
- blueberries, strawberries and raspberries
- apricots and redcurrants
- mango and red chilli, lime juice and fresh mint
As the sponge is made using ground almonds it will mean that the cake once cooked will be quite dense and moist. So don’t worry about the cake not rising, it isn’t meant to. The mascarpone cream makes this pudding wonderfully rich and silky and fruit not only acts as the decoration but gives the just enough acidity to prevent this pudding becoming too sweet. Enjoy!
Gluten free nectarine and almond summer pudding
Preparation time: 1hr (+ cooling time)
- 100g butter (at room temperature)
- 100g caster sugar
- 100g ground almonds
- 2 eggs
- 250g mascarpone
- 100g icing sugar (sifted)
- ½ tsp vanilla essence
- 2 Nectarines
- 1 small handful pomegranate seeds *optional
- 2-3 sprigs of fresh lemon verbena (torn or cut into small pieces) *optional
- 1-2 tbsp almond brittle *optional
- Preheat oven to 170°C Fan and line a 20cm cake tin with baking paper.
- Prepare your cake batter using the “all-in-one” method – beat together the butter, sugar, ground almonds and eggs together in a bowl for 1-2 minutes. Once the batter has formed spoon into the prepared cake tin and level out.
- Bake for 25-30 mins, till golden brown and the cake springs back when touched lightly. Leave the cake to cool completely before continuing with the next steps.
- Prepare your toppings. Remove the skin from the nectarines – using a knife cut a small cross pattern at the bottom of the nectarine, place in a bowl and cover with boiling water, leave for around 30-45 seconds and remove. Leave to cool slightly before peeling the skin away, next remove the stone and cut the nectarine into thin wedges.
- Next prepare your mascarpone cream – place the mascarpone, vanilla essence and icing sugar in a bowl and either using a hand beater or a wooden spoon mix together until you have a smooth thick cream.
- Finally put together your pudding. Place the sponge on a serving dish, add the mascarpone cream and gently level out. Next decorate with the nectarine wedges, scatter over the pomegranate seeds, almond brittle and lemon verbena.
Almond brittle – very easy to make and stores well in a jam jar
Preparation time: 10 minutes
- 50g granulated sugar
- 40ml water
- 10 blanched almonds
- Place sugar and water in a saucepan and heat until the sugar is fully dissolved.
- Bring the sugar syrup up to a rolling boil and leave until it starts to turn a caramel colour.
- Add the almonds to the pan and stir until they have been covered in the sugar syrup.
- Pour the mixture out onto a baking tray that you have lined with baking paper.
- Leave till cool then cut into small shards using a knife.