Queen of Puddings
The origin of this traditional British pudding dates back to the 17th century but it's unclear which Queen it was named after. Never mind. It is quite simply one of the best of the homely inexpensive type of puddings from the mother-land!
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- 100g fresh white breadcrumbs (4-5 slices toast-thickness white bread)
- Finely grated zest 1 lemon
- 100g caster sugar
- 400ml full-fat milk
- 45g (4 Tbsp) unsalted butter
- 2 large (size 6) eggs, at room temperature
- 4 Tbsp strawberry or plum jam or conserve
- Extra caster sugar for dredging
Preheat oven to 170°C (regular bake)
1 In a bowl mix breadcrumbs, lemon zest and 1 Tbsp of the measured sugar. Heat milk and butter in a saucepan until butter has just melted, then pour over breadcrumbs in the bowl. Stir well then leave to soak for 15 minutes. Stir in egg yolks.
2 Pour custard into 4 lightly-buttered deep ramekins and put ramekins on a baking tray. Bake for about 20 minutes, until custards are just set and have browned slightly around the edges. Remove from the oven and spoon the jam or conserve on top of them.
3 Whisk egg whites in a greasefree bowl until they form stiff peaks. Gradually whisk in the remaining sugar and continue whisking until stiff and glossy. Spoon on top of the custards - you'll probably only need two-thirds of the meringue. Dredge with a little caster sugar. Return custards to oven and bake about 10 minutes, until meringue is crisp and lightly golden. Serve warm or at room temperature.