Fruit Sponge

Fruit Sponge

Of all the puddings of my childhood, this is the one that I return to the most. There is something just so comforting and delicious in the simplicity of sweet sponge, sharp fruit and cold cream.

It’s so simple it doesn’t even have a proper name, just a terse description of the ingredients; fruit, sponge. But that simplicity in no way detracts from it’s appeal.

Like all good recipes, it is incredibly versatile and can be used with almost any fruit you have to hand, although my recommendation is for sharper fruits to highlight the contrast with the other elements.

If you have some prepared fruit to hand, it can be brought together in a reassuringly short space of time. Popped in the oven as you sit down to a meal, it will be ready by the time the plates are cleared. Alternatively and indulgently, you can sit hunched in front of the oven door, spoon in hand, watching it’s progress in anticipatory delight for a brief half hour.

Serves 4
500g apple puree
250g damson puree
1 large egg
The weight of the egg in softened, unsalted butter, caster sugar and plain flour
1tsp baking powder
milk to mix
caster sugar to sprinkle

double or pouring cream to serve

  • Preheat the oven to 180°C/160°C fan/gas 4.
  • Stir the fruit purees together and pour into an oven-proof dish. Smooth over.
  • Put the egg, softened butter, sugar, flour and baking powder into a bowl and mix thoroughly to a smooth batter.
  • Gradually stir in a little milk until the mixture achieves dropping consistency – when a dollop of batter drops easily from a spoon.
  • Pour the batter over the fruit and smooth the surface.
  • Bake for 35-40 minutes until the sponge is risen and golden.
  • Remove from the oven and sprinkle with a little caster sugar.
  • Serve with chilled double cream.
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