Friday, April 13, 2012

Homebaked Shakespeare

I just started following the fabulous domestic goddess Nigella Lawson on Twitter. Isn't she the best? Well, I was drawn to this particular recipe for a "syllabub," which evidently hails from Elizabethan times. Read the recipe and Nigella's comments. Isn't she so kind and supportive?


8 tablespoons dry cider
2 tablespoons Calvados
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
4 tablespoons caster sugar
Juice of 1 lemon
300ml double cream
4 cinnamon sticks (optional)
4 x 150ml glasses


Put the cider, Calvados, ground cinnamon, sugar and lemon juice in a bowl and stir until the sugar's dissolved. Keep on stirring as you gradually pour in the cream.
Now, using a wire whisk or an electric one at low speed, whip the syllabub until it is about to form soft peaks. It should occupy some notional territory between solid and liquid - you're aiming for what Jane Grigson calls "bulky whiteness" - so be careful not to let the cream become too thick or, indeed, to go further and curdle.
Spoon the syllabub into the glasses (and those you see here were bought by my maternal grandparents on their honeymoon in Venice) and puncture each semi-solid mound with a cinnamon stick, just as a Flake is plunged into a scoop of ice cream. If that's just a little too frou-frou for you (and I quite understand), simply dust the uneven tops with the merest haze of ground cinnamon.

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