Prep Time: Overnight
Cook Time: 10 minutes or less
If you have been hard at work on your vegetable plot or allotment all year then this is the time when you feel the full benefit of your labour. Nothing feels better than loading up a basket with home grown fruit and vegetables, and, thanks to our new netting, there will be masses of fruit this year as the weather really has been perfect & we have succeeded in keeping the birds off. This success can of course lead to its own problems, as you can only use up, or freeze, so much fruit at a time, but this is a lovely recipe that should help if you have a ‘glut’ like we do!
- 1kg / 2lb 4oz mixed summer berries – we used blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, redcurrants all from the allotment!
- 250g / 9oz caster sugar
- 1 large unsliced white loaf or thick-sliced white bread (preferably slightly stale)
- Line one 450g / 1lb loaf tin with a double layer of cling film
- Prepare the fruit by removing any leaves and stalks. Place the blueberries and redcurrants in a pan with the sugar and a couple of tablespoons of water and bring to the boil. Cook for 2-3 minutes, or until the berries have just softened and burst (don’t overcook). You don’t need to cook the strawberries, raspberries or blackberries so just add them to the pan at the end.
- Using a sharp knife, cut the crusts off all sides of the loaf, then cut the loaf into medium-thick slices along the length of the bread, so that you have long slices rather than square slices.
- Place one slice of bread in the base of the tin, trimming to fit. Place a slice of bread either side of the inside of the tin and cut slices to fit both ends of the tin.
- Spoon a little juice from the cooked berries into the base to make sure that all the bread is well soaked in juice. Add the fruit gradually, making sure the bread soaks up all the juices and becomes red. When the tin is full of fruit, top with another slice of bread to seal it.
- Spoon over a couple of tablespoons of juice from the berries that are left in the pan. You should have about half the amount of fruit leftover, which is lovely to serve alongside each slice.
- Cover the pan with cling film and place the pudding in the fridge overnight. Place a weight, such as a can of baked beans, on top of the pudding to press the mixture down, this will ensure that the mixture soaks into the bread and the pudding is firm enough to cut.
- To Turn out, peel back the cling film, then turn the pudding upside-down onto a plate and remove the cling film. Cut into slices and serve with the remaining berries and juice.
Fruits & Nuts
Apples, Apricot, Aubergine, Blackberries, Blackcurrants, Blueberries, Loganberries, Peaches, Plums, Raspberries, Redcurrants, Strawberries, Whitecurrants, Cobnuts, Hazelnuts
Vegetables & Herbs
Artichokes, Aubergines, Beetroot, Broccoli, Cabbages, Carrots, Cauliflower, Chard, Courgettes, Cucumber, Fennel, French Beans, Garlic, Kohlrabi, Lamb’s Lettuce, Onions, Pak Choi, Peas (inc. Sugar Snaps) Potatoes, Radishes, Rocket, Runner Beans, Salsify, Scorzonera, Samphire, Sorrel, Spinach, Sweetcorn, Tomatoes, Watercress
Meat & Game
Lamb, Rabbit, Venison, Wood Pigeon
Fish & Shellfish
Black Bream, Crab (brown, hen & Spider), Signal Crayfish, Grey Mullet, Lobster, Mackerel, Pollack, Prawns, Scallops, Sea Bass, Squid, Trout (river – brown and rainbow)
Going out of season
Blackberries, Blueberries, Cherry, Mangetout, Peach, Redcurrant, Strawberries (many of these towards the end of the month)
Suzanne is a professional chef, wife and mother who has lived in East Dulwich all her life!
This article first appeared in the July 2018 issue of SE22 magazine.