Although syllabub puddings in literature are often associated with Wedding feasts they are delicious at any time of year and particularly now, imbued as they are with the very essence of festive cheer. The version pictured above top is a syllabub coupe made with layers of medlar purée, rose hip syrup, medlar flavoured and plain syllabub and dark chocolate. However it is just as good on its own or with fresh fruit, used as a cake frosting or as luxurious topping to a trifle.
Ironically syllabub started life not as a classy dessert but as a Mediaeval drink and right up to the end of the 17th century it was the traditional love-token exchanged between milk-maids and their sweethearts. Known simply as a 'from the cow' recipe, in this version, the cow was milked directly into a bowl of crab apple verjus, sugar or honey. My recipe, inspired by the later whipped syllabubs is much easier!
Step 1: The Recipe
When you see the list of ingredients you will think it's sooo simple but don't be fooled, this is a dessert of deep and luxurious flavours and unless you're in a last-minute-party-and-I-haven't-got-anything-for-pudding panic, it is best if you allow the three ingredients, other than the cream, to infuse for at least an hour before you whip everything together.
Syllabub was traditionally made with cider but it can be made with wine or spirits (use less!), sherry or Shakespearean sack (whatever that is). Like all great recipes it can be altered to suit. If you prefer, use a fruit juice but make sure it is tart enough to be carried by the cream. Have fun experimenting!
1 lemon (juice and grated rind)
2 - 3 tablespoons of rapadura - pure raw cane sugar
100ml or 4 fl oz of dry farm cider
300ml or ½ a pint of raw crème fraîche épaisse*, whipping or thick cream
*This is cream which has been left to stand and cool after full cream milk, such as A2 raw Normandy has been run through a separator. I know this because some few weeks ago I got up at, what was to me, the crack of dawn to go and film the process. More of this in a later article.
Step 2: The Method
The method is detailed in the film, where I also show how to make and assemble my syllabub coupe.
In the film I used a much thinner crème fraîche than I use now and so I needed to pre-whip it.
Ignore cut-and-paste impostors who tell you crème fraîche does not whip, even the organic shop-bought thin version does.
If you would like to have more details on syllabub and verjus and its recent renaissance in modern French and American Organic Cuisine then visit Simply Organic Recipes, where you will also find more of our organic and gluten-free recipes and more festive puddings and pies.
Thanks for dropping by and please feel free to comment and/or ask questions either here or on the blog.
Compliments of the season!
Pavlovafowl aka Sue