“I have had a most rare vision. I have had a dream, past the wit of man to say what dream it was.”. A midsummer night’s dream jelly is the stuff of a fantasy land. This gorgeous pudding is almost too delicious to be real, and full of fresh, fruity flavour.
Recipe by Claire Ferrandi
A midsummer night’s dream jelly
Straw-wine jelly layer
- 18 (36g) gelatine leaves
- 750ml (3 cups) good-quality straw/dessert wine
- juice of 2 lemons
- 10ml (2 tsp) vanilla essence
- 125ml (½ cup) water
- 265g sugar
- oil, to brush
- handful fresh mint leaves + extra, to garnish
- 250g plums, pitted and sliced into wedges
- 250g seasonal berries
Elderflower and white-chocolate layer
- 6 (12g) gelatine leaves
- 500ml (2 cups) fresh cream
- 250ml (1 cup) elderflower cordial
- pinch salt
- 160g white chocolate, finely chopped
- edible flowers, to garnish
- double-thick cream, to serve
It is best to start your jelly the night before. For the wine layer, place the 18 gelatine leaves in a little cold water to soften, 5 minutes. While the leaves soften, place the wine, lemon juice, vanilla, 125ml (½ cup) water and sugar in a medium pot and bring to a boil. Remove from heat.
Squeeze the water out of the gelatine leaves and whisk the gelatine into the hot wine mixture until dissolved.
Refrigerate the mixture and give it a stir every 15 minutes. The jelly should be almost set, but still liquid so that the fruit doesn’t float to the top when you add it. This should take around 1 hour.
Brush the inside of a 1,5L-capacity jelly mould, or 12 individual moulds of 125ml (½ cup) capacity, with oil. Pour a third of the jelly into the base of the large mould or individual moulds and add a third each of the mint and fruit – repeat this process 3 times until the moulds are full and the fruit is evenly dispersed. Refrigerate the jelly/jellies to set, at least 4 hours or overnight.
Once set, make the elderflower and white-chocolate layer. Place the 6 gelatine leaves in a little cold water to soften, 5 minutes. While the leaves soften, place the cream, elderflower cordial and salt in a medium pot and bring to a boil. Remove from heat immediately and add the white chocolate, stirring until smooth.
Squeeze the water out of the gelatine leaves and whisk the gelatine into the hot cream mixture until dissolved.
Allow the cream mixture to cool slightly (but not entirely, it should remain warm), 15 minutes, before pouring over the set wine jelly/jellies to create a base layer. Refrigerate to set, 3 hours.
To remove the jelly/jellies from the mould/s, dip into hot water for 15 seconds. Gently release the jelly/jellies onto a serving platter or plates.
To serve, decorate with edible flowers and mint leaves. Serve with dollops of double-thick cream.
Cook’s tip: If you prefer an alcohol-free version, substitute the wine for white grape juice.