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                                                                  Queen of Puddings is so worthy of its name, a pudding filled with lovely ingredients and crowned with a layer of soft chewy meringue. As you can see from this Queen of Puddings recipe, it is quick and easy to make, is comforting yet not heavy. The bottom layer of the puddings is made from eggs, milk, sugar and breadcrumbs with a topping of meringue. Fruit is added either in the base of the dish or between the base and meringue. The choice is yours. Use a thick layer of jam, any fruit preserve, a compote of seasonal fruit, lemon or fruit curd - even marmalade. The variations of Queen of Puddings are endless. Enjoy

                                                                  • Yes No pudding
                                                                  • Yes No 8 fl oz milk
                                                                  • Yes No 8 225ml fl oz heavy/double cream
                                                                  • Yes No ½ tsp â½ tsp vanilla extract
                                                                  • Yes No 3 ½ oz, 100g â/ fine/caster sugar
                                                                  • Yes No 5 large egg yolk
                                                                  • Yes No 5 140g oz fresh bread crumbs
                                                                  • Yes No 2 lemon
                                                                  • Yes No 7 200g oz fruit compote
                                                                  • Yes No meringue
                                                                  • Yes No 5 egg white
                                                                  • Yes No 4 110g oz fine/ caster sugar
                                                                  • Yes No 1 tbsp powder/icing sugar
                                                                  • Preheat the oven to 310 °F/160 °C/Gas 2. Lightly butter a 3 ½ pint/2 liter ovenproof dish.
                                                                  • Place the milk, cream and vanilla extract into a saucepan and slowly bring to a gentle boil.
                                                                  • In a roomy bowl whisk the sugar with the egg yolks until light and fluffy. Still whisking, slowly add the warmed milk and cream to the egg mixture taking care not to splash. Finally add the breadcrumbs and the lemon zest.
                                                                  • Place the jam or chosen fruit into the bottom of the greased pudding dish then pour the egg and breadcrumb mixture; you can omit the jam and use it later in the recipe if you choose, see below.
                                                                  • Bake the pudding in the oven for 15 - 20 mins or until the mixture is risen and almost set yet still slightly wobbly. Remove the pudding from the oven and leave to cool.
                                                                  • Raise the oven to 375 °F/190 °C/Gas 5.
                                                                  • Make the Meringue. In a large, clean roomy baking bowl, whisk the egg whites until stiff peaks are formed. Whisk in the sugar one tbsp at a time. If you haven't used your fruit filling in the base of the pudding, warm it gently in a microwave or warmed through in a pan and spread it carefully over the cooled base then cover with a thick layer of meringue.
                                                                  • Sprinkle liberally with the powder/icing sugar,place in the hot oven and bake for 10 minutes or until the surface is crisp and lightly browned.
                                                                  • Serve immediately.
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