So you may or may not know, 2022 is Queen Elizabeth II's Platinum Jubilee. That means 70 years on the throne. As part of the celebrations, Fortnum and Mason's hosted a Platinum Pudding Competition to create a dessert fit for the queen, inspired by her life. Well, I entered, and, alas, did not win. But, now I can share my recipe with you! This is my platinum pudding, amended a bit from the recipe I submitted to the competition.
What is Platinum Pudding?
Well, that's still to be decided! At time of writing, the winner of the competition hasn't been announced and therefore the dessert that will become platinum pudding hasn't been decided.
The competition was intended for entrants to develop a new dessert that would become known as platinum pudding.
My platinum pudding is inspired by a Charlotte Royale - an elegant pudding, made by lining a bowl or pudding basin with a layer of cake and then filling this with gelatine set custard.
This recipe is divided into two main parts: the cakes for lining the mould and the cream filling.
Ingredients for Cake Layers
My Platinum Pudding incorporates two flavours of light sponge cake, similar to the texture of a classic Swiss roll or jelly roll. To make these cakes, you'll need:
- Eggs - divide the eggs into yolks and whites. To make your life easier, place all the egg whites together in one large bowl, while separating the yolks into two bowls (2 yolks in each).
- Cream of tartar - this will help stabilize the meringue, which makes these cake layers super light and easy to form into the bowl.
- Sugar - superfine granulated sugar or caster sugar will work best in this recipe. The overall quantity of sugar will be divided out during the process of making these cakes.
- Cornstarch - also known as cornflour in the UK.
- Flour - either all purpose flour or plain flour work in this recipe. If you would like to substitute with cake flour, you can replace the ¾ cup of flour called for with 1 cup of cake flour and leave out the cornstarch.
- Baking powder
- Water - just a few tablespoons of tap water.
- Flavourings and ground spices:
- Vanilla extract
- Almond extract
The mixture of cardamom, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and allspice will echo the flavours of masala chai spice. You can replace these with other spice mixes with similar flavours if these are available to you. In the UK, mixed spice can be used to replace all but the cardamom. In the US, pumpkin spice provides a similar flavour profile to mixed spice.
Ingredients for Filling
The filling is essentially a gelatine stabilized fruit custard. For this, you will need:
- Strawberries and raspberries - I recommend a mix of the two, but you could also use just raspberries or just strawberries dependent on preference. I also use fresh berries in my recipe, but you can substitute with frozen. Defrost the frozen first before pureeing.
- Powdered sugar - or confectioner's or icing sugar.
- Milk - I recommend using full fat (whole) milk, but you can also use 2% (semi-skimmed).
- Sugar - superfine granulated or caster sugar can be used here.
- Ground cardamom
- Egg yolks - reserve the whites for use in the optional meringue decoration or freeze to preserve for use in another recipe later.
- Gelatine leaves - in the UK gelatine is readily available in both leaf or powdered forms. If you are not able to find leaf gelatine, you can substitute powdered gelatine in this recipe. For 8 leaves, I recommend 6 teaspoons of powdered gelatine.
Making My Platinum Pudding
Don't be put off this recipe by the different steps or components. The actual processes are very straightforward.
Prepare Swiss Roll Pans
You will want to start by preparing two Swiss roll or jelly roll pans by lining these with parchment paper.
To make this sit firmly in the tins, you may find adding a bit of butter or grease to the pan will help these stick. Be careful not to get any grease on the top side of the parchment that will be touching the cake.
Then set these aside.
Making Two Swiss Roll Cakes at Once
To make this recipe a little quicker and easier, you can effectively make the two cakes at once, despite these having different flavours. This means you only need to make one egg white meringue, that you will split in two for two different flavoured batters.
One Meringue for Two Cakes
Begin by placing the egg whites together in one large mixing bowl with the cream of tartar. Using a handheld electric whisk, beat the whites to soft peak form. Then begin slowly adding ¼ cup of sugar about a tablespoon at a time. Once you've added this sugar, continue beating until you have stiff peaks and then set aside.
Add two egg yolks to each of two small bowls or jugs. Add a tablespoon and a half of water to each of these. In one of the egg yolk bowls, add almond extract, while adding vanilla to the other. Whisk each of these together to beat the egg yolks - you can do this with a fork.
In two clean mixing bowls, divide out your flour evenly, so that one bowl has ¼ cup + 2 tablespoons and the other does as well. Add ¼ teaspoon of baking powder to each. Then, to one of these bowls, add your spices (cardamom, cinnamon, ginger, allspice and nutmeg).
Pour the vanilla egg mixture into the spiced flour along with a couple of drops of red food colouring gel. Add the almond egg mixture into the un-spiced flour with a couple of drops of yellow food colouring gel. Whisk each of these together separately.
Then divide your meringue into two even halves - I do this by cutting down the middle of the meringue in the bowl with a spatula to create the division clearly. Add a small dollop to each of your batters and stir to help loosen.
Add the rest of the meringue to each bowl (so that you've added a half of the meringue to each of the two bowls). Fold to incorporate without knocking out too much air.
Tips for Baking
Pour each into one of the prepared baking trays and gently spread evenly with an offset spatula. Bake in a preheated oven for about 15 minutes until the cakes are risen and spring back to the touch.
- The key to the cakes doneness is that it is risen and not too stick on the surface.
- After about 12 minutes, start checking the cakes. If you can touch the top and it does not stick to your finger and is slightly springy, these are done.
- If your oven cooks unevenly, you may want to swap the cakes around after about 10 minutes. It is important not to open the oven too much, here - so avoid swapping too early in the baking process.
- When removing from the oven, allow the cakes to cool for 5 minutes in the pan, then turn out onto a clean piece of parchment and carefully peal the baking parchment away. This will make them easier to handle when cutting and lining the bowl.
For some more tips on baking Swiss roll cakes, see my Cinnamon Swiss Roll recipe.
Lining the Bowl
This recipe has been created in a 21cm (8.5") mixing bowl such as this one.
For ease in turning out the pudding, line the bowl with plastic wrap. Allow the plastic wrap to overhang the edges enough to cover the base once the pudding is full.
So, you can line your bowl in any pattern you'd like - you can let your creativity take over here. Just ensure your pieces are snug together so that the filling doesn't leak out when you pour it in.
If you want to achieve the Battenberg cake inspired pattern in my pictures, this can be done by cutting the cakes into cut the cakes into 2" strips lengthwise.
Make three triangles of each the pink and yellow cakes and place these in the centre, base of the mould, fitted tightly together.
For the next layer, you want to create a chequerboard by placing a strip of yellow against the pink. You can measure each piece out by eye and the cake strips should be easy to handle to help you place it in the bowl and slice in place, removing excess to use as you build your layers. Don’t worry if you misjudge - you can always use extra cake to help fill any gaps!
Repeat rows until you get near the lip of the bowl, reserving enough cake to cover the bottom once filled. Set aside while you prepare the filling.
Making Berry Cream Filling
In order to make the cream filling for this pudding, you want to start by softening your gelatine.
If you're using gelatine leaves, place the leaves in a bowl and cover in water to soak. If using powdered gelatine, pour 2 tablespoons of water into a small bowl and then sprinkle the gelatine over top. With powdered gelatine you may find that you need to top the water up a little to ensure that all the gelatine is soaked, but you don't want too much water as it is more difficult to remove excess liquid from powdered gelatine.
In either case, leave the gelatine to sit for about 5 minutes to soak and soften. If using leaves, after five minutes, squeeze the gelatine to drain any excess water and set aside.
Smooth Berry Puree
Meanwhile, place the raspberries and hulled strawberries in the bowl of a food processor along with the powdered sugar. Pulse this until the berries are well pureed. Then strain these through a sieve, collecting the juice in a bowl. You can discard the pulp from the sieve.
Cardamom Spiced Custard
Next, place the eggs and sugar in a jug, whisking together until light and creamy. Set aside while you heat the cream in a saucepan with the cardamom until the mixture is simmering. This helps to infuse the cardamom into the cream.
Once the cream has been simmering about 2 minutes, pour this slowly and steadily into the egg and sugar mixture, while whisking continuously. This process is tempering the eggs so that you can continue cooking the custard without them scrambling.
Add this mixture back into the saucepan and continue whisking while cooking over a medium heat until thickened enough to coat the back of a spoon.
Then, remove from the heat and add the softened gelatine, whisking until dissolved, followed by the berry puree. At this stage you can also add a teaspoon of almond extract or tablespoon of amaretto liqueur (optional).
Place this mixture in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes to cool down.
Bringing It All Together
After 30 minutes, beat the heavy cream to stiff peaks and then fold this into the berry custard until you have a smooth light pink mousse.
Pour this into the cake lined bowl, smoothing the top. Then add spare pieces of cake to seal the custard into a lining of cake. Pull the plastic wrap around the top of this, adding more if needed to seal the pudding in. Place this in the refrigerator for at least four hours to set (better overnight).
How to Serve Platinum Pudding
When ready to serve, carefully unwrap the plastic wrap from the bottom of the pudding. Invert a plate or serving dish over this and carefully turn over so that the pudding bowl is now overtop the plate. Gently remove the bowl and then peel away the plastic wrap lining. The dome shaped pudding should hold firmly together thanks to the stabilized custard filling.
If you want to add an extra decorative finish, you can use some of the egg whites leftover from the custard to make a quick Italian style meringue.
For this, you'll want to heat sugar and water together in a saucepan until dissolved and the mixture boils.
The amounts of sugar and water will depend on how many of the egg whites you intend to use. I recommend a quarter cup of sugar and 1 tablespoon of water per egg white. This means if you are making all four egg whites, you'll want 1 cup of sugar and ¼ cup of water,
Allow the syrup to boil for about 3 minutes while you begin to whisk your egg whites to soft peaks, using a stand mixer or handheld electric mixer. After three minutes, slowly pour the syrup down the side of the bowl into the egg whites while continuing to whisk. Then keep whisking until you read stiff glossy peaks and the mixture is cooled. This normally takes about 5-10 minutes.
Transfer to a piping bag and decorate as however you'd like!
My platinum pudding, which is basically an updated charlotte royale, is a great make ahead dessert. It can easily be made and kept wrapped in the bowl for about 4 days before unmoulding and serving.
Once turned out of the bowl and sliced, the filling should hold firm enough to keep shape without support. But, if you are making for a specific event, I would recommend keeping moulded in the bowl until nearer the time of serving for most certain structural integrity.
So, strictly speaking, no. This is my platinum pudding recipe. This is an amended version of the recipe I submitted to the platinum pudding competition, but unfortunately it did not make it to the final.
Looking for special occasion desserts? Check out these:
My Platinum Pudding
- hand held electric beater
- Small saucepan
- large mixing bowl
- 2 Swiss roll pans
- 2 medium mixing bowls
- small mixing bowl 8.5" or 21cm
- Food processor
Ingredients for Cakes
- 4 eggs
- ½ teaspoon cream of tartar
- 1 cup superfine granulated sugar or caster sugar
- 2 tablespoon cornstarch or cornflour in the UK
- ¾ cup all purpose flour or plain flour
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- 3 tablespoon water
- 1 teaspoon almond extract
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon ground cardamom
- ⅛ teaspoon ground allspice
- ⅛ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ⅛ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- pinch ground ginger
Ingredients for Custard Filling
- 7 oz fresh strawberries hulled and chopped
- 7 oz fresh raspberries
- 2 tablespoon powdered sugar
- ¾ cup milk full fat or whole milk
- ½ cup superfine granulated sugar or caster sugar
- 2 teaspoon ground cardamom
- 4 egg yolks
- 8 gelatine leaves see note
- 1⅔ cup heavy cream or double cream
- Optional: 1 teaspoon almond extract or 1 tablespoon amaretto liqueur
Ingredients for Meringue Decoration (optional)
- 2 egg whites
- ½ cup superfine granulated sugar or caster sugar
- 2 tablespoon water
Instructions for the Cakes
- Begin by lining two Swiss roll tins with parchment paper and preheating an oven to 350°F (175C/155C Fan).
- Separate the eggs, placing all four egg whites into a large mixing bowl. Place two egg yolks in a small bowl or jug and the two remaining egg yolks in a separate small bowl or jug.
- Add the cream of tartar to the egg whites and whisk using a handheld electric hand beater until soft peaks form. Then being adding ¼ cup of sugar about a tablespoon at a time, while continuing to beat until stiff peaks form. Set this aside.
- Add 1½ tablespoon of water to each of the small bowls of egg yolks. Then add almond extract to one bowl and vanilla extract to the other. Whisk each bowl together separately to beat the egg yolks lightly.
- Add ¼ cup + 2 tablespoons of flour to each of two separate medium mixing bowls. Then add 1 tablespoon of cornstarch to each bowl and ¼ cup + 2 tablespoons of sugar to each bowl. Stir each together.
- Add the dry ground spices to one of the bowls of flour and give it a stir.
- Next add the vanilla egg yolk mixture and a couple of drops of red food colouring gel to the flour bowl with the spices. Add the almond egg yolk mixture and a couple drops of yellow food colouring gel to the other flour bowl. Whisk each together separately to create two batters - one yellow and one pink.
- Now, divide your egg white meringue down the middle using a spatula or table knife. Dollop a small bit out of each half of the meringue to add to each bowl of batter. Stir these to help loosen the batters before adding the rest of each half of the meringue to the bowls. Fold to create light, airy sponge batters. Avoid beating or stirring too much as you don't want to knock too much air out.
- Pour each batter into one of the prepared sheet pans. Gently spread into the corners of the trays with a spatula to make these as even as possible.
- Bake in the preheated oven for about 15 minutes, watching for the cakes to be risen and to spring back to the touch.
- Once baked, remove from the oven and allow to cool in the trays for about 5 minutes, before turning out onto clean pieces of parchment paper and gently peeling the baking parchment away.
- Line a small (8.5" or 21cm) mixing bowl or pudding basin with plastic wrap to make removing the pudding easier once it is finished. Then add slices of the cakes to this to create a shell of cake that will be the outer layer of your pudding (see note), reserving enough to cover the bottom of your filled pudding later.
- Once you've made your cake lining, set this aside while you make the filling.
Instructions for the Filling
- For the filling, begin by soaking your gelatine leaves in cool water for at least five minutes until softened, then squeeze out the excess liquid and set aside.
- Meanwhile, place your raspberries and hulled strawberries in the bowl of a food processor along with the powdered sugar and blitz until pureed. Then pass through a sieve to remove seeds and excess pulp, collecting a smooth juice puree in a bowl.
- In a jug, whisk together egg yolks and sugar until light and creamy.
- In a small saucepan, warm the milk with the ground cardamom over a medium heat until simmering.
- Allow to simmer for 2 minutes before tempering your eggs. Do this by pouring the hot liquid slowly into the egg mixture while whisking continuously. Then immediately pour this mixture back into the saucepan and continue heating at medium until thickened enough to coat the back of a spoon. Avoid bringing this mixture to a boil.
- Once thickened, remove from the heat and add the gelatine to the pan, whisking until this has melted and the custard is smooth. Then add the berry puree and almond extract or amaretto (if using), stirring to combine.
- Place this berry custard in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes to cool.
- Once the custard has cooled for 30 minutes, make your whipped cream by beat the heavy cream with a handheld electric beater until stiff peaks form.
- Add the fruit puree to the cream and fold to incorporate until you have a light berry mousse.
- Pour this into the cake lined bowl, smooth and top with the reserved strips of cake.
- Cover with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator to set for at least four hours (ideally overnight).
- When set, unwrap and turn out onto a serving plate.
Instructions for the Decoration (optional)
- If looking to add a decorative touch, this dessert leaves you with spare egg whites that make for an easy Italian-style meringue decoration.
- In a small saucepan heat the sugar and water until the sugar dissolves and then bring to a boil. Allow this to boil for 3 minutes.
- While the syrup is boiling, beat your egg whites with a handheld electric beater until they reach soft peaks.
- After three minutes, pour the syrup slowly down the side of the bowl into your soft peaked egg whites while you continue to beat these.
- Continue beating until the meringue is thick, glossy, stiff and has cooled down. This normally takes 5-10 minutes.
- Transfer to a piping bag and pipe decorations onto the pudding.
- Serve slices cool and store in the refrigerator.