Queen of Puddings

An unusual and impressive pud, originally invented for Queen Victoria

A real curiosity, this one. Originally invented for Queen Victoria, layers of breadcrumb-thickened custard are topped with jam and meringue. You can use any flavour jam you like. By adding cornflour and vinegar to the meringue mix, you achieve a lovely marshmallowy texture.

Ingredients

• 4 eggs• 600ml milk• finely grated rind of 11/2 lemons
• 125g fresh white breadcrumbs
• 75g caster sugar plus 1tbsp extra
• 1tbsp blackcurrant jam
• 1tsp fruit vinegar
• 1tsp cornflour

Directions

1) Mix together 3 egg yolks (keep the egg whites in a separate bowl) and 1 whole egg with the milk and lemon rind.
2) Add the breadcrumbs and the tablespoon of sugar.
3) Then pour the breadcrumb mixture into a heatproof baking dish.
4) Leave to stand for about 30 minutes for the breadcrumbs to absorb all the milk.
5) Bake at gas mark 2/150°C/300°F for 30 minutes until just set. Wait for it to cool, then spread carefully with the jam.
6) Whisk the egg whites until stiff and standing in peaks, then add 75g of sugar a third at a time, whisking well after each addition.
7) Fold in the vinegar and cornflour.
8) Pile the egg whites on top of the baked mixture and cook for 20 minutes more, until the meringue is tinged with brown and firm to the touch.
9) Serve warm.

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