Queen of plums

  • serves 6
  • A little effort

This classic British dessert uses homemade plum compote and is topped with golden meringue – the perfect family pudding to follow a Sunday roast.



  • plums 6 ripe but firm, halved and stoned
  • golden caster sugar 275g
  • unwaxed lemon ½, juiced and finely zested
  • butter 15g, plus extra for buttering
  • free-range eggs 4 medium
  • fresh white breadcrumbs 125g
  • full-cream milk 500ml
  • vanilla extract ½ tsp
  • single cream chilled to serve


  • Step 1

    Cut the plums into quarters and put them in a saucepan with 100g of the sugar and the lemon juice. Cover and cook gently for 15 minutes, turning once, until the sugar has dissolved and the plums have softened. Remove the lid and increase the heat. Simmer the plums for a further 8-10 minutes until they’re soft and the sauce thickened to resemble a fruit compote. Stir regularly so they don’t stick. Spoon into a well-buttered, 2-litre ovenproof dish – a soufflé dish is ideal. Leave to cool for 30 minutes.

  • Step 2

    Separate 3 of the eggs (reserving the whites) and beat the 3 yolks with 1 whole egg in a large bowl until smooth. Stir in 25g of the remaining sugar, lemon zest, softened butter, breadcrumbs and milk. Leave to stand for 15 minutes to allow the breadcrumbs to swell. Spoon the bread mixture gently on top of the cooled plums, spread evenly and allow to stand for a further 15 minutes.

  • Step 3

    Heat the oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4. Bake the pudding on a sturdy baking tray in the centre of the oven for about 40 minutes until lightly browned and only just set. It should still wobble a little in the middle. Whisk the egg whites until stiff and whisk in the rest of the sugar (bit by bit) until the meringue is thick and glossy. Beat in the vanilla extract. Remove the dish from the oven and pile the meringue on top. Return for a further 15-20 minutes until the meringue is set and lightly browned. Serve hot with single cream.

Nutritional Information

  • Kcals 416
  • Fat 10.2g
  • Carbs 75.8g
  • Fibre 1.8g
  • Protein 9.9g
  • Salt 0.67g