Sunday, 14 June 2009
One of the things I like best about this time of year is all the lovely berry fruits that are becoming available. This pudding is a real favourite in our household, probably because all these fresh fruits are only in the shops for a very short time each year.
Soft and tremblingly tasty, this pudding is full of lovely fresh flavours . . . tart currants, sweet raspberries, blueberries, tay berries . . . cherries . . . this is summer at it's finest in a bowl.
Do plan ahead as it needs to be put into the fridge the night before in order for it to set up properly and for the lovely fruit juices to soak meltingly into the bread. Also be sure to use a good loaf of white bread, not the ordinary sliced bread that is for every day use, and so soft and squidgy. Buy a good and sturdy loaf, and let it go stale. You want it to be a couple of days old so that it will soak in the juices better.
This delicious pudding is one of my favourite things about summer. Tart . . . sweet . . . this pudding contains all the goodness of summer in every mouthful. Plan ahead as it needs to sit overnight to set up.
750g/1lb 14oz mixed summer fruit
(such as raspberries, red, white and blackcurrants, tayberries, loganberries, blackberries, cherries and blueberries)
185g/6½oz caster sugar
1 medium loaf good-quality white bread, slightly stale
2 tbsp cassis or blackcurrant cordial
creme fraiche for serving
You will need a 2 pint pudding basin.
Place all the fruit in a pan, removing any stalks as necessary. Add the sugar and then heat and cook them over medium heat for 3 to 5 minutes, only until the sugar has dissolved and the fruit begins to give up some of it's juices. Please be careful not to over cook them. Stir in the cassis or blackcurrant cordial. Set aside while you get the bread ready.
Trim off all the crusts from the bread and cut the bread into thin slices. Cut one round slice out of the bread to fit the bottom of the basin and place it into the basin. Line the pudding basin with the slices of bread, overlapping them and sealing well by pressing any edges together. Fill in any gaps with small pieces of bread, so that no juice can get through when you add the fruit. spoon all of the fruit and its juices into the pudding basin. Trim the tips of bread from around the edge. Cover the top of the fruit with more wedges of bread. Place the pudding basin on a plate to collect any juices. Find a saucer that fits neatly inside the bowl, and place it on top to cover the upper layer of bread, then weigh the saucer down with weights - unopened tin cans come in very handy for this.. Let it cool, then place in the fridge overnight.
The next day, remove the weights and the saucer. Run a thin blade around the edges, then invert the basin onto a shallow serving plate. Serve, cut into slices or spooned out, and topped with a good dollop of Creme Fraiche.