If you haven’t got the time or inclination to make this all from scratch, you can of course cut corners by buying sponge fingers or boudoir biscuits and mixing some blackberries into bought apple compote.
Start preparing this dish well ahead. First make the sponge fingers,
Whisk the egg yolks and sugar in a bowl until light and creamy. Whip the egg whites in another bowl until standing in soft peaks.
Add a little of the whipped egg whites to the yolk mixture and then gradually add the sieved flour and the remaining egg whites alternately, taking care not to over-mix.
Place in a piping bag and pipe straight lines on greaseproof paper to resemble long fingers. Liberally dust with icing sugar and
Next, make the fruit compote. Peel, core and chop the apples, then mix them with the blackberries in a saucepan. Add the butter, cover and cook together over a moderate heat until nicely amalgamated, 10–15 minutes. Add icing sugar to sweeten and set aside to cool.
Make the blackberry sauce by mixing all the ingredients together in a small pan with
Make the custard: bring the milk to just below the boil in a largish pan. In a heatproof mixing bowl, beat the egg yolks and sugar with the scraped vanilla pod and seeds until the mixture is pale in colour. Pour the milk over this and return to the pan. Cook until the custard coats the back of a spoon. Strain and leave to get cold. Chill.
Serve with the custard (which you can heat up gently if you like) and the blackberry sauce.
© 2008 Anthony Demetre. All rights reserved.