Colourful Summer Baking

pudding basins

Summer pudding ticks so many boxes – it’s thoroughly British, it looks and tastes spectacular and, with all that fruit, it’s relatively healthy for a dessert! The puddings freeze well so make in bulk and you’ll always have something ready for unexpected visitors.

Basin sizes and recipe quantities

The recipe given requires a pudding basin of about 1-1¼ litres. The colourful Mason Cash Zest and Hearts ranges include mixing bowls and pudding basins in various sizes. The 17cm pudding basins are ideal for this recipe but you can adapt the quantities to suit a 14 or 16cm basin if necessary. You’ll also need one of the large mixing bowls.

Ingredients for two puddings:

  • 2-2½kg mixed berries and currants, washed and dried – try 600g strawberries, 500g blackberries, 200g redcurrants and 1kg raspberries
  • 350g golden caster sugar
  • 14 slices white bread, crusts removed (day old bread from a square, medium sliced loaf is best)

Collect the juices:

Add the sugar to the saucepan with about 50ml of water and heat gently, stirring occasionally, until the sugar is completely dissolved. Bring the sugar syrup to the boil for one minute and then add all the fruit apart from the strawberries. Cook on a gentle heat for about five minute, stirring a couple of times. The fruit should soften but remain mostly intact, the dark red juices seeping out. Pour the mixture into a large sieve over a mixing bowl to drain out the juices.

Lining the pudding basins:

Line both pudding basins with clingfilm to make the contents easier to turn out, leaving a substantial overhang. Cut most of the bread into rough triangles and leave the last two slices whole. Dip the whole slices in the fruit juices and put one at the bottom of each basin, pushing gently but firmly into place. Dip the triangles of bread into the juices and use them to line the basins, trimming the last pieces to fit if necessary and reserving eight pieces for later.

Filling the pudding basins:

Gently mix the strawberries in with the other softened fruit and fill each basin carefully with the fruits. Dip the last bread triangles into the juice and use to form a lid on the pudding basins. Cover the puddings with the clingfilm overhang, top with a plate and weigh down with a large tin or two. Leave the puddings in the refrigerator for at least six hours or ideally overnight. They are then ready to freeze and use later or, to serve, turn out onto a plate. Garnish with some fresh fruit and drizzle with leftover juice and fresh cream.

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