For Mothering Sunday this year we are all round at Hayley’s for a big lunch. She has made a delicious Paella, inspired by her recent trip to Barcelona, and I have made Mother (Queen) of Puddings for dessert. I have never made this retro pudding before but it has been something on my ‘to do’ list. I based my recipe on Mary Berry’s recipe and found it simple to make. I have used the classic flavour combinations of mixed summer red berries, but have also seen online that there are lots of alternatives- rhubarb and ginger, apple (Eve’s pudding)- so feel free to be creative with the fruit filling! For that extra Mother’s Day feel, I also coloured my meringue pink for the occasion with a few drops of red food colouring.
Happy Mother’s Day to all our super Mum readers, we hope you have had a lovely day x
For the base:
600ml/1 pint whole milk
25g/1oz butter, plus extra for greasing the dish
50g/2oz caster sugar
3 free-range eggs, yolks only
75g/3oz fresh white breadcrumbs
For the meringue:
175g/6oz caster sugar
3 free-range eggs, whites only
A few drops of Red/Pink food colouring (optional)
For the fruit Jam:
500g/1lb 2oz frozen mixed summer fruits of your choice, I went for raspberries, strawberries and cherries (you can use 200g/7oz fresh mixed summer fruits but as they are not in season currently, frozen is best!)
2 tbsp of a good raspberry or strawberry jam/conserve- I uses Bon Maman
3 tbsp caster sugar (or to taste- I don’t like it too sweet as it adds a nice sharpness against the sweet meringue and custard)
Preheat the oven to 170C/325F/Gas 3 and grease a 1.4 litre/2½ pint shallow ovenproof dish (one that will fit into a roasting tin) with butter.
For the base, very gently warm the milk in a small saucepan. Add the butter and the 50g/2oz of sugar, stir until dissolved.
Lightly whisk the egg yolks in a bowl. Slowly pour the warm milk into the eggs, while whisking.
Sprinkle the breadcrumbs over the base of the buttered dish and pour over the custard. Leave to stand for about 15 minutes, so the breadcrumbs absorb the liquid.
Carefully transfer the dish to a roasting tin and fill the tin halfway with hot water. Bake the custard in the preheated oven for about 25-30 minutes until the custard has set. Remove from the oven and out of the roasting tin and set aside to cool a little.
Meanwhile, put the mixed summer fruits and jam into a pan and warm over a gentle heat. Once they’ve softened and released their juice, add the sugar and cook until you have a fairly thick, jam-like consistency. This can take quite a long time when using frozen fruits.
Whisk the egg whites using an electric hand whisk on full speed until stiff peaks form when the whisk is removed. If using, add a few drops of the red or pink food colouring to the whisked egg whites (I always add a little more than you think as the colour fades during baking). Add the remaining 175g/6oz sugar a teaspoon at a time, still whisking on maximum speed until the mixture is stiff and shiny. Check that the meringue has reached your desired pink colour and add more colouring if necessary if it hasn’t. Transfer the meringue mixture to a piping bag.
Spread the fruit jam over the set custard, then pipe the meringue on top. It looks quite pretty if you can find a piping nozzle with an open star shape!
Lower the oven temperature to 150C/300F/Gas 2 and return the pudding to the oven (not in the roasting tin with water) for about 25-30 minutes until the meringue is pale golden all over and crisp. Serve at once with pouring cream.