Sunday, April 09, 2006

Hail to the Queen

From the incomparable 1955 edition of the Good Housekeeping Cookbook - its pages starting to scallop at the edges, spine restored long ago with silver duct tape - and with a little customization, one of my mother's triumphs: Queen of Puddings.
For pudding:
1 qt. milk
2 cups 2‑day old bread in 1/2 inch cubes
1/2 cup raisins, plumped in hot tea, sherry or spiced water for half an hour
2 eggs plus 2 yolks
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1 tbsp vanilla
4 tbsp melted butter/margarine
For topping:
2 egg whites
1/4 cup sugar
1/3 cup blackcurrant or other fruit jelly
  • Heat oven to 350f. Grease 1‑1/2 quart casserole. In double boiler, heat milk until tiny bubbles appear around edges. Remove from heat; stir in bread cubes; set aside.
  • Break 2 eggs and 2 yolks into casserole; beat lightly with fork. Stir in 1/4 cup sugar, salt, nutmeg, vanilla, melted butter then fold in bread/milk mixture.
  • Set casserole in baking pan and place it in the oven. Fill the pan with warm water to 1 inch from top of casserole.
  • Bake, uncovered, 34‑50 minutes. Remove from oven.
  • Beat the egg whites until they form peaks; slowly add 1/4 cup sugar, beating till stiff.
  • Spread the jelly on the top of the pudding and then heap the beaten whites on top of that.
    Bake in pan of warm water 12‑15 minutes more, until the meringue is golden. Serve warm or cold.
  • Alternatively, heap the beaten whites/sugar directly on the pudding, leaving impressions in each serving. When you serve the pudding, put a dab of jelly in each impression.
I do not know of any poems already written about or featuring bread pudding, let alone queen of puddings, but if you try this recipe it may drive you to verse. The blessed Delia (I've just read that she baked the very cake seen on the cover of the Rolling Stones album Let It Bleed!) makes a version in individual ramekins, which is worth looking at if only to see how beautiful a dish it is.

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2 Comments:

Blogger Tracy Hamon said...

I think this sounds like a good easter recipe to try. I'm going try it in the ramekins myself, cause they look so cool. Thanks!

7:23 AM  
Blogger Rhona McAdam said...

We'll be waiting for the poem that follows Tracy!

2:42 PM  

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