Lemon Delicious – Anna Polyviou

How I love eating this traditional dessert: cold, warm or hot; any style is fine with me. You can serve it in the dish, but I like it turned out so you can see the curd on top. This was part of a dessert I created that helped get a restaurant awarded a chef’s hat. The plate had an additional four elements on it, but the review was all about the lemon delicious: they forgot to mention anything else.

SERVES 8

  • 50 g (1¾ oz) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 165 g (5¾ oz/¾ cup) caster (superfine) sugar,
  • 100 g (3½ oz) extra for coating dishes
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 50 ml (1¾ fl oz)  passionfruit juice, warmed
  • 40 g (1½ oz) plain (all-purpose) flour, sifted
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 eggs, separated, whites whisked to soft peaks
  • 110 ml (3¾ fl oz) milk

VANILLA CRÈME ANGLAISE

  • 100 ml (3½ fl oz) milk
  • 100 ml (3½ fl oz) thickened (whipping) cream
  • 1 vanilla bean, split and seeds scraped
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 70 g (2½ oz) caster (superfine) sugar

To make the vanilla crème anglaise, put the milk, cream and vanilla bean in a small saucepan and bring it to the boil over medium heat.

In a small bowl, whisk together the egg yolks and sugar. When the milk mixture has come to a boil, pour half onto the egg mixture and whisk well.

Pour the mixture back into the saucepan and return to medium heat. Heat to 84°C (183°F) using a thermometer, or until it thickly coats the back of a spoon, stirring constantly.

Remove from the heat and strain into a medium bowl. Place the bowl in a bath of iced water to cool, stirring constantly. When cooled, lay plastic wrap
on the surface to prevent a skin forming and transfer the bowl to the refrigerator until ready to serve.

To make the lemon delicious, preheat the oven to 150°C (300°F). Spray two 13 cm (5 inch) diameter round ovenproof dishes with oil and sprinkle the inside with sugar until coated. Tap out any excess.

In an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugar for 3–4 minutes on high speed, until light and fluffy.

Reduce the speed to medium and add the lemon zest. Turn the mixer off and scrape down the side of the bowl.

Return the speed to low and gradually add the warm passionfruit juice. Add the sifted flour and baking powder, alternating with the egg yolks. Turn the mixer off again and scrape down the side of the bowl.

Return the speed to low and slowly add the
cold milk, until all is combined. Remove from the mixer and fold through the beaten egg whites until all are combined.

Divide the mixture between the prepared dishes, pouring it in until the dishes are three-quarters full.

Stand the dishes in a larger baking dish. Add enough water to come halfway up the sides of the pudding dishes.

Bake for 60 minutes, or until the mixture comes away from the sides of the dishes.

Allow to cool in the dishes. Carefully turn the puddings out of the dishes onto serving plates and serve with the vanilla crème anglaise.

COOL TWIST

Make it in advance and chill it, then reheat it in the microwave for a few seconds (take it out of the fridge and allow it to reach room temperature first). The crème anglaise is a favourite of mine. I love to drink it on its own, and I use leftovers to make ice cream when I’ve made too much.

Images and recipes from Sweet Street by Anna Polyviou, Murdoch Books, RRP$39.99

Sweet Street – Anna Polyviou

In her first book, the punk princess of pastry, Anna Polyviou, shares some of her favourite desserts and pastries.

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