Despite the literal translation of ‘zuppa inglese’ to ‘English soup’ this tasty pudding is not a soup and neither is it English. It is, in fact, a traditional Italian dessert made from brandy-soaked sponge fingers, layered with cream, custard and chocolate. Roberta’s penchant for sweet things makes this dessert one of her favourite recipes to serve up at her summer dinner parties, eliciting the praise of all her guests!
How to Make a Classic Zuppa Inglese
Prep time: 30 mins (not including refrigeration)
Calories per serving: 637kcal
- 4 egg yolks
- 80g caster sugar
- 50g plain flour, sifted
- 500ml milk
- 1/2 vanilla pod
- 50g cocoa powder, sifted
- 16 sponge fingers
- 250ml brandy or raspberry liqueur
- 50g dark chocolate, grated, to top
- 100ml double cream, whipped
- In a bowl, whisk the egg yolks with the sugar until the sugar has dissolved and the mixture is light and airy. Add the flour and combine thoroughly.
- Warm the milk with the vanilla pod, over a low heat, slowly bringing to a simmer.
- Remove the vanilla pod and slowly add the warmed milk to the egg mixture, whisking constantly, until all combined.
- Pour the mixture back into the saucepan and warm through over a low heat until it becomes a thick custard.
- Divide the custard into 3 equal portions and mix about ⅓ of the custard with the cocoa powder.
- Pour the brandy or the raspberry liqueur into a shallow bowl. Dip the sponge fingers into the liqueur and then layer ⅓ of them in the base of your serving bowl, or divide between your serving ramekins, cutting to size where needed.
- Layer the plain custard on top and then add another layer of the soaked sponge fingers.
- Next, add a layer of chocolate custard, then another layer of sponge, then finish with the final layer of plain custard.
- Refrigerate for about 2 hours before serving.
- Top with the whipped cream and sprinkle over your grated dark chocolate (or cocoa powder if you prefer) to serve. Buon appetito!
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