Prunes Steeped in Orange Pekoe Syrup with Cream

Pruneaux confits au thé de Lotus et à la crème fraîche

Preparation info

  • Difficulty

    Medium

  • For

    two

    people

Appears in

Cuisine of the Sun

By Roger Vergé

Published 1979

  • About

Inexpensive

Ingredients

  • 12 handsome Agen or California prunes
  • 2 orange pekoe tea bags
  • 150 g ( oz) caster sugar
  • 50 g ( oz) butter
  • 250 ml (scant half pint) whipping cream
  • 1 tablespoon icing sugar
  • 2 tablespoons almonds cut in slivers

Equipment

  • 1 large darning needle
  • 1 deep dish 25–30 cm (10–12 in) in diameter

Method

Preparation: 12 hours ahead

Prick each prune with a darning needle, put them in a bowl, cover with lukewarm water and leave to soak for 2 hours.

Bring ¼ litre (scant half pint) of water to the boil in a small saucepan. Take it off the heat, drop in the teabags and leave them to infuse, covered, for 15 minutes. Then remove the teabags and add 150 g ( oz) of sugar. Bring to the boil, and boil for 15 minutes, skimming frequently to remove any scum that rises to the surface.

After the prunes have soaked for 2 hours and are nicely swollen drain them and leave them to steep in the tea-syrup for 8–10 hours.

Finishing and serving the dish

Put a deep dish into the ice-making compartment of the refrigerator to chill.

Soften 50 g ( oz) of butter. Whisk the whipping cream to a light snow. Incorporate the softened butter. Add the tablespoon of icing sugar and chill for 10 minutes. Meanwhile toast the slivered almonds lightly to a pale beige colour.

Dip a tablespoon into a bowl of hot water and use it to make 12 nicely shaped balls of cream; place them in the chilled dish. This must be done extremely fast. Put a prune on top of each ball of cream and cover it lightly with a spoonful of the tea-syrup. Sprinkle the slivered almonds over the top and serve very cold.

Recommended wines

  • a very cool sweet wine (Barsac, Sauternes)