The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee weekend is getting closer and I’ve been getting creative in the kitchen with a lovely box of ingredients, sent to me by online British gourmet food specialists, Forman and Field . The chaps over at Forman and Field love a good party, so they challenged a fine group of bloggers to create “a fabulous, magical, celebratory and most importantly delicious cake or sweet treat in honour of Her Maj’s Jubilee.”
Forman and Field are no strangers to quality events and catering, they recently catered for an Ascot polo party where, according to the Forman and Field blog, Her Majesty commented that Forman’s gluten-free brownies were the best she had ever tasted. With that in mind, I knew the ingredients would speak for themselves, so I wanted to mess around with them as little as possible!
I did however, want to create something special; a taste explosion with an unusual combination of ingredients, but with a classic twist. We were told to “Think British! Think street party! Think pretty!” I was particularly lured by the Forman’s own home made Crème Anglaise and the Forman’s Lemon Curd and I though both would go make a jolly good trifle…paired perhaps with seasonal British raspberries and lashings of fresh double cream…
The full selection of Forman’s Jubilee Bake Off ingredients sent to me included –
- Dove’s Farm Plain Flour (milled from English wheat grown by organic farmers to Ethical Trade standards)
- Longman Farm Unsalted Butter (proper butter from a family run dairy farm in Somerset)
- Forman and Field Lemon Curd (own handmade lemon curd with a good hit of lemon zest)
- Forman and Field Crème Anglaise (own handmade light pouring custard made with fresh Bourbon vanilla)
- British Elderflower Liqueur (made with hand-picked elderflowers by Bramley & Gage in South Devon)
- Original Beans Cru Virunga Chocolate Buttons (70% cocoa, made by a new chocolate producer and used by Marcus Wareing and The Fat Duck)
- A jar of Mulled Pears (also made in the Forman and Field kitchens, mulled in red wine syrup)
- A mini box of chocolates by Damian Allsop (eaten almost immediately!)
The mulled pears were speaking to me and I started getting side tracked by thoughts of pears and chocolate, but in the end, I didn’t think that the mulled pears were seasonal enough for the occasion (so I’m saving them for Christmas!)
I then began to think about tray-bakes, again, perhaps with pears, the chocolate, the elderflower liqueur, but my mind kept on coming back to the lovely Forman’s home made Crème Anglaise and the Forman’s Lemon Curd. With the weather being so sunny, I didn’t really want a hot pudding. So, I came back to the trifle idea on the basis that no street party would be proper without one, and came up with these…
The first one (and my entry to the competition – see recipe below) was made with a basic sponge using the Dove’s Farm organic flour and the farm unsalted butter. If you have less time on your hands, just use a plain Madeira cake, left over cupcakes or even sponge fingers.
I then enlisted the help of the British elderflower liqueur (after a quick tipple with some crushed ice, it was a hot day!) soaking up small pieces of the sponge in the liqueur before placing it into a trifle bowl. Next came a burst of fresh British seasonal raspberries, with a good few dollops of the Forman and Field zingy lemon curd over the top. Along came lashings of Forman’s Crème Anglaise, just poured over the sponge and raspberries. Finally, I then whisked up some double cream for the top.
I was left with the dilemma of whether to go all out and use the Original Beans Cru Virunga chocolate buttons. After sampling a few, I decided to melt the rest in a bowl over a pan of simmering water. I left the chocolate to cool a little (hoping it wouln’t melt the cream). Then I was brave and drizzled around half of the melted chocolate over the cream with a teaspoon, finishing off with a few raspberries and six golden crowns. If you save a bit of the melted chocolate, you can also use it to drizzle some over individual portions to make them look extra pretty!
The second trifle was a bit of an after-thought. The children were hovering and were desperate to try some, so whilst they licked what was left of the melted chocolate bowl, I made another trifle, using apple juice instead of the Elderflower liqueur, drizzling more lemon curd over the top instead of melted chocolate as well as a good dose of Jubilee sprinkles.
After all my trifle making, I was torn as to which one to enter into the bake off! I thought they were both equally delicious. The first one was special as it contained so much of the lovely Elderflower liqueur. The second one had a bigger zing because I used more of the lemon curd. I will be making both for our own Jubilee Street party, but since the elderflower and chocolate trifle used two extra ingredients from the box, I’ve decided to go with that one as my entry to the Bake Off!
Since I’m in with a chance of winning an amazing Olympic dining experience at Forman’s Fish Island restaurant, I hope I manage to beat off some of the stiff blogging competition I am up against. I also hope I’m not playing it too safe with a trifle!? It did contain some extra-delicious ingredients, after all and you really can’t have a street party without one!
Only time will tell!
- 500 g leftover sponge cake or Madeira cake
- 250 ml British elderflower liqueur
- 200 g good quality lemon curd
- 400 g fresh British raspberries
- 500 g fresh vanilla creme anglaise or custard
- 600 ml fresh double cream
- 2 tablespoon icing sugar
- 100 g dark chocolate, 70%
- Take one large trifle bowl or two smaller trifle bowls. Pour the Elderflower liqueur into a separate smaller bowl and dip your pieces of sponge or Madeira cake into the liqueur. Leave it to soak in for a few seconds and then place the sponge in the bottom of your trifle bowl/bowls filling up the bowl until half full. Pour over any leftover liqueur if you haven't used up the 250ml.
- Dot or drizzle the lemon curd all over the sponge and sprinkle over the fresh raspberries (saving a few for the top of the trifle to decorate). Pour the creme anglaise or fresh vanilla custard over the sponge, leaving some room for the cream!
- In another bowl, add two tablespoons of icing sugar to the double cream and whisk with an electric whisk or a balloon whisk until thick. Be careful not to over-whip, the cream should still be soft, though holding its shape and will drop easily off a spoon. Carefully spoon the whisked double cream over the creme anglaise or fresh vanilla custard in your trifle bowl.
- Put the dark chocolate buttons (or a chopped bar of dark chocolate) into a heat-proof bowl over a pan of gently simmering water to melt the chocolate. Stir a couple of times until the buttons/chocolate has melted. Leave the melted chocolate to cool slightly, then, using a teaspoon, drizzle the melted chocolate over the whipped cream to decorate. Add a few fresh raspberries and some extra decorations of your choice, e.g crowns, spinkles etc
- Place the trifle/trifles in the fridge to cool for an hour or so. The trifle/trifles are best eaten on the same day. If you have any melted chocolate left, use it to drizzle over individual portions of the trifle on serving.
If you can't find Elderflower liqueur, you could use sweet sherry and add a tablespoon or two of elderflower syrup or cordial, for a non-alcoholic version, use apple juice or elderflower cordial to soak the sponge.
This recipe will make one large trifle or two smaller trifles.
A chef at Forman and Field will be judging all our entries on 31st May 2012. He/she will then chose the winner and a runner-up. You can keep up to date with news from Forman and Field through their blog and by following their tweets on Twitter on either @FormanandField or by searching the #FormansJubileeBakeOff hashtag.
With many thanks to Forman and Field for the extra-special box of ingredients, the quality of the produce I could chose from was really exquisite!
What would you have made with the mystery box of ingredients?!