Try this variation on summer pudding making the most of the early Autumn fruits, such as plums, blackberries and delicious English apples. Serve with softly whipped double cream flavoured with a splash of Calvados for a really indulgent dessert.
• 175g caster sugar
• 3 small English eating apples, peeled, cored and sliced
• 4 red plums, halved, stones removed and sliced
• 100g raspberries
• 100g strawberries, hulled and sliced
• 100g blackcurrants or blueberries
• 100g blackberries
• 10 slices thick-sliced white bread
• Extra fruit, to decorate
(plus overnight chilling)
Place the sugar and 200ml of cold water in a large pan and heat gently until the sugar has dissolved. Add the sliced apples and simmer for 5-10 minutes until just tender. Add the rest of the fruit and simmer for a further 2-3 minutes. Leave to cool.
Remove the crusts from the bread slices. Use a round cookie cutter to stamp out a circle from one slice of bread to fit the base of a 1.2 litre pudding basin. Cut the remaining slices of bread in half.
Carefully strain half of the fruit syrup from the cooled fruit into a shallow dish. Lightly dip most of the slices of bread into the syrup and arrange around the side of the pudding basin, overlapping them slightly to completely line the basin. Dip the bread circle into the syrup and press into the bottom of the basin.
Spoon the fruit into the lined basin, pressing down gently with the back of a spoon. Use the remaining slices of bread to cover the fruit filling completely and spoon over any remaining syrup.
Place a saucer on top of the basin and weigh it down with 2-3 food cans. Chill in the fridge overnight. To serve, carefully turn the pudding out onto a plate and decorate with extra sliced fruit.