At Home with the Darwins

Recipes offer an intimate glimpse into the life of Charles Darwin and his family

Nesselrode pudding. (MRS. DARWIN'S RECIPE BOOK: Revived and Illustrated, by Dusha Bateson and Weslie Janeway (Glitterati Inc., November 2008))

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Burnt Cream, with its rich custard base and crunchy topping, this dessert is nothing short of perfection.

1 tablespoon flour

1 cup (250 ml) heavy cream

2 eggs, separated

2 ounces (60 g) superfine (castes) sugar, plus 1 teaspoon

1. Mix the flour in a medium saucepan with a little milk or water before adding it to the cream; this will prevent lumps. Bring to a boil and cook gently for about 10 minutes to ensure the flour is thoroughly cooked.

2. Add the egg yolks and 1 teaspoon of sugar. (You can do without the sugar at this stage if you like, as the caramelized top will provide plenty in the finished dish.)

3. Beat the egg whites only until they form a frothy liquid and add them to the pan.

4. Taste and, if you are satisfied that no hint of a floury taste remains, pour the mixture into an ovenproof dish and allow to cool.

Chill overnight.


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