I have just strained off my damson de vie that I made earlier in the year at the same time as my sloe de vie and it tastes delicious. My favourite way to drink it is with a little lemonade or tonic water. I decided to try and transform this drink into a pudding and came up with this idea. The pudding incorporates winter flavours in a deliciously light and fruity pudding.
It is a really beautiful looking pudding because of its two layers. The jelly compliments the sweetness of the panna cotta and the berries add another texture. I used flat lemonade to make the jelly because I didn’t want any bubbles running through it. The processes to make this pudding are very straightforward, however you do need to be patient and wait for the jelly to set before adding the panna cotta which means it is not something you can make in an afternoon. That being said it really is worth the effort as it tastes superb and is a real show stopper when you bring it out.
Damson de vie jelly and yogurt panna cotta
Ingredients: (Serves 6-8)
For the jelly:
50-75ml damson de vie (or damson gin)
lemonade (preferably flat)
2 gelatine leaves (that have been soaked in water for 10 minutes)
2 handfuls of cranberries
2 handfuls of blackberries
For the panna cotta:
250ml natural yogurt
3-4 drops vanilla essence
2 gelatine leaves (that have been soaked in water for 10 minutes)
Step 1 – make the jelly
Line a loaf tin with cling film.
Evenly distribute the fruit over the bottom of the tin.
Make the jelly by placing the damson de vie in a measuring jug, add the lemonade until it measures ¾ of a pint, taste and add more damson de vie if needed.
Place the liquid in a saucepan with the sugar. Heat until the sugar is completely dissolved.
Add the gelatine to the saucepan and allow to dissolve into the liquid, stirring occasionally.
Once the gelatine has dissolved pour the jelly into the loaf tin.
Place in the fridge and chill for 2-3 hours until the jelly has set.
Step 2 – make the panna cotta
Once the jelly has set make the panna cotta.
Place the cream and sugar in a pan and heat until the sugar has completely dissolved.
Add the gelatine to the pan, and cook until the gelatine is dissolved.
Place the yogurt and vanilla essence in a bowl and stir together.
Sieve the cream and sugar mixture into the yogurt (this is to ensure your panna cotta is completely smooth).
Stir the mixture together and then carefully pour it over the jelly.
Allow to set overnight.
Choose the plate you wish to serve the pudding on, place it on top of the loaf tin and then turn it upside down, the pudding should come out easily and remove the cling film.
It has been a while since I have made a mousse and I had forgotten how easy they are to prepare. However, it does require you to use a lot of bowls resulting in a huge pile of washing up afterwards. I think the reason that I don’t make them that often is because you have to wait for them to set in the fridge for several hours and I tend to prefer a more spontaneous pudding that can be prepared and cooked within 30 minutes…
Once this pudding sets it has two layers. The bottom layer is a beautifully zingy citrus curd that isn’t too sweet and the top layer is a wonderfully light and airy mousse. The only regret I have about making this dessert is that I didn’t put it in a glass bowl, as it is a really attractive pudding with its two layers.
Lemon & Lime Curd Mousse
2 lemons (juice and zest)
3 limes (juice and zest)
4 eggs (separated)
200g caster sugar
1 sachet of gelatine
1. Measure the juice of the lemons and lime in a measuring jug and top up with water so that you have ½ a pint of liquid.
2. Place the liquid into a saucepan and heat. Once the liquid is warm add the gelatine stirring until it is dissolved then leave to cool slightly.
3. In another bowl whisk together the zest, sugar and egg yolks. Slowly whisk in the liquid.
4. Beat the egg whites until they have stiff peaks and whisk the cream to allow it to thicken slightly. Add both the egg whites and cream to the lemon mixture and fold in carefully.
5. Pour the mixture into the bowl (or individual glasses) that you wish to serve in and place in the fridge to set for 3-4 hours.
When you think of Yorkshire puddings you would normally associate them as an accompaniment to a roast. However, today I am going to try and convince you that you can enjoy them as a pudding. I made these yesterday evening for our pudding. My first selling point is that they are incredibly quick and easy to make. The batter takes no time at all to whip up and can rest on the side until you are ready to use it (if you do this give it one last whisk just before you tip it into the moulds). Whilst the apricots benefit from being rehydrated this can be done whilst you are cooking/eating your main course.
I think my main selling point however is the taste – they are beautifully light, they are not too sweet and the fruit adds a slight zing. The outside of the puddings will be lovely and crunchy whilst the inside will remain moist. Like a true Yorkshire pudding it will collapse slightly after cooking because of all the air in the middle – so don’t worry. I served my puddings with a little crème fraiche and found that it really complimented the flavours. Having eaten my share I found myself wanting more – that in itself has got to be a good sign…
Sweet Yorkshire Puddings
Ingredients: (makes 6)
1 ½oz plain flour
pinch of salt
9 – 12 dried apricots (cut into quarters and rehydrate in boiling water for 15-30 minutes)
1 eating apple (peeled, cored and cut into small chunks)
Vegetable oil (for cooking with)
icing sugar (for dusting)
1. Preheat oven to 200C fan.
2. Put the flour, salt and sugar in a bowl, using a whisk beat the egg into the dry mix.
3. Slowly add the milk whisking all the time so stop any lumps forming, then decant the batter into a measuring jug.
4. Take a non-stick muffin tray and pour a little oil roughly ½tsp – 1tsp into the base of 6 of the moulds. Place in the oven for 3-5 minutes so that the oil is hot.
5. Remove from the oven and pour the batter evenly between each of the pre-oiled moulds. Then drop in the apple and apricot pieces into the batter – use a teaspoon to push the fruit pieces gently under the batter.
6. Put the muffin tray back in the oven and bake for 15-18 minutes. Remove from the tin, dust with icing sugar and serve with a little crème fraiche or pouring cream.
Last week I baked shortbread that I think disappeared in under 48hours not a PB but pretty good nonetheless. During that time I managed to incorporate the shortbread into two different types of pudding one using figs and the other mixed berries (predominately raspberries). I thought I would share this second recipe with you as it offers a splash of colour on the plate, is very easy to make and tastes fresh and zingy.
Everyone raves about how well raspberry and lemon go together and they are right, but I personally think sometimes orange and raspberry are even better – particularly the zest. This pudding takes no time at all to whip up and you can make it using fresh or frozen fruit. I used a combination of the two as the autumn raspberries are starting to come through but I only had enough for decoration. Raspberries break down beautifully when heated which means you can make a sauce really quickly. I rarely sieve my sauces as I like the textures, however if you are not ‘a pip person’ then I would recommend passing it through a sieve to get a smooth coulis.
I don’t think there is much else to say about this pudding other than give it a try.