Peach Pudding with Grappa Cream

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Preparation info

  • For

    8-10

    • Difficulty

      Medium

Appears in

Food of the Sun: A Fresh Look at Mediterranean Cooking

Food of the Sun

By Alastair Little and Richard Whittington

Published 1995

  • About

Fresh peaches are nicer, but tinned will still deliver a good result in this pudding which is served with a sweet grappa-flavoured whipped cream. Grappa can be rough enough to strip paint, but there are some really rather sophisticated single-grape varieties that are not at all harsh. The preferred grappa is made from sweet Chardonnay grapes, but a little brandy can be substituted if you happen to have run out.

Ingredients

  • 45 g/ oz unsalted butter
  • 225 g/8 oz brioche
  • 4 large ripe peaches or 8 canned peach halves
  • 6 eggs
  • 115 g/4 oz vanilla sugar, or 115 g/4 oz caster sugar plus 1 tsp vanilla essence
  • 575 ml/1 pt full-cream milk
  • 300 ml/½ pt single cream
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon

For the Grappa Cream

  • 575 ml/1 pt (double) cream
  • 30 g/1 oz icing sugar
  • 2 tsp grappa

Method

Preparation

Melt the butter in a small pan over a very low heat and reserve.

Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/gas4.

Cut the crusts off the brioche, cut it into slices about 2.5 cm/1 in thick and then cut these into cubes.

Toss the brioche cubes in the melted butter to coat, then spread them on baking sheets.

Cooking

Put the brioche cubes in the oven and bake for about 10 minutes, or until lightly browned. Check after 5 minutes as they burn easily. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool. Reduce the oven setting to 160°C/320°F/gas3.

In a large bowl, whisk the eggs with the vanilla sugar.

Bring the milk and single cream to the boil, then beat it into the egg mixture. Add the toasted brioche cubes, stir and leave to amalgamate for at least 15 minutes or up to an hour (if so, turn the oven off and then preheat it in time for baking the pudding).

If using fresh peaches, peel, stone and slice them. If using canned, drain them well. Arrange in a buttered gratin dish and pour over the custard mixture.

Put into a bain-marie with hot water poured to come halfway up the sides of the dish and bake for 40 minutes, or until just set and golden on top.

Take out, dust with cinnamon and leave to cool.

Make the grappa cream: beat the cream with the icing sugar and the grappa until it holds soft peaks.

Serving

Serve straight from the dish while still warm, with dollops of the cream on the side.

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