Desserts; a name which when taken, reminds of “Something Sweet”. None of the festival around the world is complete without Desserts. England is no exception and with Christmas around the corner, this is a perfect time to talk about desserts, especially, English desserts and what even better can be is getting aware of some TRADITIONAL desserts recipes from England. Isn’t it? Because, the British knows how to party when it comes to holidays and will pull out all the stops to make Christmas go out with a bang. The preparations start from early September by making the traditional Christmas cake.
So, here we bring up to you the list of English Desserts Recipes which you can try out this Christmas and welcome your Guests in some English style.
Without a classic Christmas cake, the British Christmas is never complete and never a real Christmas. The rich dry fruits are mixed up with Brandy and Rum creating a delicious heavily spiced, rich chocolate cake. The cake is made up in September and can be fed at periods with a little more of brandy to help mature the cake. Served for Christmas eve until over which is never too long.
INGREDIENTS: For 1 Cake:
- Currants: 1lb 2oz.
- Golden Raisins: 8oz.
- Raisins: 8oz, 225g.
- Mixed Candied Peel, finely Chopped: 4oz.
- Glace Cherries: Halved, 6oz.
- Brandy: 3 TBSP. (Extra for Feeding).
- Butter: 2 ½ Sticks.
- Soft Brown Sugar: 10 oz.
- Zest of Lemon: ½.
- Eggs: Large 6 (Lightly Beaten).
- All Purpose Flour: 100oz.
- Mixed Spice: 1 Level TSP.
- Cinnamon: 1 Level TSP.
- Nutmeg: 1 Level TSP.
- Pinch Salt.
- Line up The Cake Tin: Line up a 9” cake tin with 2 thicknesses of greaseproof paper or parchment. Tie a band of a news or a brown paper outside which will act as an insulator to prevent the cake from burning from outside.
- Sugar, Eggs, Butter: Using a Hand Mixer, until light and fluffy, cream the butter and sugar together. Stir in the lemon zest.
Add the beaten egg to the mixture, one at a time and mixing it well after each addition. Do not rush while doing this.
- The Cake Batter: Once the Sugar, Butter is creamed and Eggs added, the mixture should be fluffy, light and pale in color.
- Add The Flour, Spice and Dry Fruit: Add the dry fruits, spices and flour to the mixture and stir it. Make sure there is no flour at the bowl’s bottom.
- Finished Batter: Half the flour and fruit into the egg and butter mixture will be folded, once done, repeat with the remaining fruit and flour. Lastly, add the brandy.
- In The Tin: In the prepared cake tin, spoon the mixture making sure there are no air pockets. Once filled, smooth the surface with the back of your spoon and make a dip in the center.
- Heat the Oven To 300 F: For 4 and Half Hours, bake in the center of the oven, cover the tin with double layer of grease proof after 2 and half hours if the cake turns brown too fast. Avoid opening the oven door too often during the cooking as this may cause your cake to collapse.
- Leave To Cool: For about an hour leave the cake to cool then remove from the tin, remove the paper and let it cool down completely. Once Cool, prick the surface and pour over 2-3 TBSP. This feeding should be done every two weeks until Christmas. Store the cake in an airtight tin, wrapped up in greaseproof paper.
After the Christmas cake, the next most common and popular treat served during the Christmas holiday is Mince Pie. This time the fruits and spices are held with Suet and wrapped in light, melting pastry. Christmas without Mince Pie is incomplete because it is being served as a part of traditional British Christmas, since as long ago as the 16th So, they pretty much hold a part of the heritage of a British Christmas. Here is the full Recipe.
Total: 45 Minutes.
Preparation: 25 Minutes.
Cook: 20 Minutes.
Yield: 12-18 Servings.
- All Purpose Flour: 350gms.
- Butter: 225gms.
- Salt Pinch.
- Egg: 1.
- Mincemeat: 1 Jar.
- Icing Sugar: 2 TBSP.
- Make The Pastry: Heat the Oven to 200C.
- Place the butter, salt and flour in a clean, large bowl.
- Rub the butter in the flour with your fingers until the mixture resembles rough sand.
- Using a cold knife, stir an egg in the mixture. Add cold water with a TSP and stir until mixture binds, make sure it does not gets sticky.
- Wrap the dough and chill it for 15-30 minutes.
- Assemble The Pies: For the size of tart you want, choose a muffin or a bun tin. Choose from a standard 12-cup muffin tin.
- Dust the work surface lightly with a little flour and roll out 2/3 of the pastry to 1/8” thick.
- To line the cups of the tin, cut circles.
- Fill the pastry lined tins, 2/3 full with mincemeat.
- Roll the remaining pastry to the same thickness and cut smaller circle to fit as lids on the tarts or to be decorative. Use fun shaped decorations for the top.
- With a little cold water, dampen the edges of the tart and press the lids on.
- In the surface of each pie with a small sharp knife make a hole to allow the steam to escape.
- For20 minutes, bake in the pre heated oven.
- Once the baking is completed, sprinkle with icing sugar.
The last Sunday before the star of advent which is roughly 5 weeks before Christmas, the making of the traditional pudding starts. The British Christmas is never complete without Christmas pudding. It is made in advance to allow it to mature. Ingredients may seem daunting , just assemble them in advance to avoid any delay.
Total Time: 8 Hours 45 Minutes.
Preparation: 45 Minutes.
Cook: 8 Hours.
Marinate Time: 12 Hours.
Yield: 8 Serves.
- Mixed Dried Fruit: 1 Pound/450gms.
- Candied Peel: 1 Ounce/25gms.
- Apple: 1 Small (Cooking Apple, Peeled, Finely Chopped and Cored).
- Orange Zest: 1 TBSP.
- Lemon Zest: ½ TBSP.
- Orange Juice: 2 TBSP.
- Lemon Juice: 1 TBSP.
- Brandy: 4 TBSP.
- Flour: 2 Ounces/55gms.
- Mixed Spice: 1 TSP.
- Cinnamon: 1 ½ TSP.
- Suet: Beef or Veg., Shredded, 4 Ounces, 110gms.
- Brown Sugar: 4 Ounces/110gms.
- Bread Crumbs: 4 Ounces/110gms.
- Almonds: Whole, Roughly Chopped, Shelled, 1 Ounce/25gms.
- Eggs: 2 Large.
- Butter up a 2 ½ Pint Pudding Basin.
- In a large mixing bowl, mix candied peel, dried fruits, apple, orange, lemon juice and brandy. With a clean tea towel, cover the bowl and leave to marinate for a few hours, overnight recommended.
- In a large mixing bowl, stir the mixed spices, flour and cinnamon together. Add the Sugar, Suet, Lemon & Orange Zest, Nuts, Bread crumbs and stir again until all the ingredients are well mixed. Add the marinated dried fruits and stir again.
- In a small bowl, beat the eggs and stir it in the dry ingredients. Make sure the mixture has a soft consistency.
- In a greased pudding basin, spoon the mixture, press it down gently and cover it with a double layer of greaseproof paper, then a layer of aluminum foil and tie it with string wrapping it around the basin then loop over the top and again around the bowl forming a handle which will help in removing the pudding from the steamer.
- Place the pudding in a steamer set over simmering water and steam it for 7 hours. Do not forget to check the water level frequently.
- Once done, remove the pudding from the steamer and let it cool completely. Remove the paper, prick the pudding and pour in a little more brandy.
- Cover with a grease proof paper and re-tie.
- Store in a dry, cool place until Christmas.
A quintessential pudding gracing the British tables for more than 4 centuries. The decadent, blousey looking, rich dessert is luscious. Having so many variations in the traditional recipe, fruit is a must have for some and for others, a big No. Essentially a trifle needs a sponge soaked in sherry, thick layer of creamy custard and a deep layer of light whipped cream. The rest all is a personal preference.
Total Time: 40 Minutes.
Preparation: 20 Minutes.
Cook: 20 Minutes.
Yield: 8 Servings.
- Madeira, Sponge or Pound Cake: 6oz./160g.
- Sweet Sherry: 3 TBSP.
- Jelly Block: ½ Cup/135g.
- Fresh Strawberries: 10oz/300g.
- Homemade Custard: 2 Cups.
- Whipping Cream: 2 Cups.
Nutritional Guidelines (Per Serving):
Calories: 265, Fat: 7g., Carbohydrates: 30g., Protein: 21g.
- Gather all Ingredients.
- Line the bottom of the glasses or the dish with the cake slices or trifle sponges. Sprinkle with sherry and leave to soak for 5 minutes.
- Slice thick, if using fresh strawberries, if using frozen, leave whole and spread the fruit evenly over the cake. Press lightly to release the juices.
- Pour the liquid jelly making sure it covers the sponge. Place the dish into the fridge and leave until the jelly sets.
- Once done, spoon the custard again in a thick layer.
- With a layer of whipped cream and pieces of strawberry slices, serve the dish.
Although it is named “Scottish” yet it is consumed enthusiastically everywhere across the United Kingdom during Christmas. The buttery bake is simply delicious!
Total Time: 45 Minutes.
Preparation: 20 Minutes.
Cook: 25 to 45 Minutes (depending upon the method).
Yield: 1 Shortbread (12 Servings).
- Butter: 8 Ounces/225g.
- Tiny Pinch Salt.
- Superfine Sugar: ½ Cup/110g.
- All Purpose Flour: 2 Cups/225 g.
- Cornstarch: 3 ½ Ounces/100g.
Calories: 233, Fat: 16g., Carbohydrates: 21g., Protein: 1g.
Steps To Make:
- Preheat the oven to 325 F/170 C.
- Cream together with an electric mixer, the Butter, Sugar and Salt until light and fluffy and pale in color, in a large bowl which will take almost 10 minutes.
- Whisk together the cornstarch and flour in a separate bowl and then mix it into the bowl of butter and sugar.
- Tip the mixture on a light floured work surface and knead lightly to form a loose dough.
- Between 2 sheets of parchment paper, roll the dough to 1cm. thick. Prick the surface with a fork. Cut in a desired shape using a cookie cutter.
- Place the shortbread on a greased baking sheet and bake for 25 minutes to make it crisp. Sprinkle superfine sugar and let it cool down.
- Store in an airtight tin and ENJOY.
SPICED VICTORIA SPONGE CAKE
The lightest of the Bunch. Last, but not the least. This cake has a warm, Christmas-y flavor to it that will surely appeal to almost every guest’s sweet tooth. A classic cake of the British kitchen. It is consumed as a perfect afternoon tea treat. People do debate on how to make one and competition can be seen on who can bake the best. Although it is much loved by a lot of people but for some it gets a little heavy. It perfectly suits those who prefer a light confection.
Total Time: 30 Minutes.
Preparation: 4 Minutes.
Cook: 25 Minutes.
Yield: 8 Servings.
- Eggs: 3 Large.
- Caster Sugar: 1 ½ Cup (300g).
- Self Rising Flour: 1 Cup (225g).
- Baking Powder: 2 TSP.
- Unsalted Butter (Softened): 7 Ounces (200g).
- Water: 6 TBSP (Cold).
- Cloves: 3.
- Cinnamon: ½ TSP.
- All Spice Berries: 4.
- Mixed Spice: 1 TSP.
- Raspberry Jam: 1 TSP.
- Whipping Cream: 1 Cup (200ml).
- Icing Sugar: 4 TBSP.
Calories: 471, Fat: 26g., Carbohydrates: 56g., Protein: 6g.
Steps to Make:
- Preheat the Oven to 350 F.
- With a little butter, line the bottom with lightly greased baking parchment and grease two 8” sandwich tins.
- Beat Eggs, 1 Cup Sugar, The Flour, Baking Powder and Butter together in a mixer until it has a soft, dropping consistency.
- Between the 2 cake tins, divide the cake’s batter. Smooth up the cake’s surface and On the middle shelf of the oven bake the cake for 25 minutes. Lower the temperature of the oven if you see the cake cooking up too quickly, but do not open the door at all.
- Once done, open the door and check the center of the cake by gently pressing it. It should spring back quickly. If this happen, take the cakes out and place on a cooling rack. Once shrinking away from the sides of the tin, remove the cake and leave it to cool down completely.
- While the cake is cooling down, place the remaining sugar into a saucepan with water , add the spices and boil. Continue cooking until mixture remains half. Once done, let it cool down.
- Using a pastry brush, brush on a syrup a little at a time, allowing the cakes to absorb the syrup before adding more by turning the cooled cakes cooked side down.
- Place a cake on a serving plate, cover with a layer of raspberry jam and a thick layer of whipped cream. Top it up with second cake.
- Before serving, dredge some icing sugar.
So, here comes an end to our list of top famous and commonly consumed English desserts without which, the Christmas in England is never complete. Try any of the mentioned desserts at your home and welcome your guests in some English style.