At last the berry fruit are ripe! Over the past few weeks I’ve been keeping an eye on the bushes, hoping for a bountiful crop, I’m not disappointed. While most of them are served very simply, for breakfast or dessert with natural Greek-style yogurt, it’s always lovely to make a show-stopper pudding to celebrate the best of the seasonal fruit. Now I’m going to tell you why I love this Berry Meringue Ice cream Cake so much…
In my family, there are a few special desserts that always appear at certain times of year. There’s my make-ahead Kladdkaka (Swedish squidgy chocolate cake), so delicious and simple, it can be popped in the freezer to then thaw and serve with freshly whipped cream and berries. Or there’s my Panna Cotta recipe with a seasonal accompaniment, it’s always a winner. However I’m more than just a little obsessed with this new invention. With a nutty meringue base, featuring ripe and juicy summer fruit, combined with vanilla cream, if I may blow my own trumpet for a moment, it’s beyond delicious.
This dessert takes the stress out of dinner party cooking. It can be prepared days in advance and made in many number of carnations. Apricots or peaches would work wonderfully well with the nut clustered meringue too.
I have used blackcurrants, raspberries and redcurrants in this cake. Redcurrants are not always readily available I know. An easy substitution is just to use raspberries or strawberries. If you like a productive day out and live local to me Copas Farms have a brilliant selection of pick-your-own fruit and vegetables.
This recipe may seem a little long however it really isn’t complicated, the sweet and delicious result is absolutely worth the effort.
Berry Meringue Ice cream Cake
- 23cm cake tin, electric whisk
Pistachio Meringue Base
- 45 g unsalted pistachios roughly chopped
- 1 egg white keep the yolk for the ice cream
- 50 g caster
- 150 g raspberries & redcurrants
- 150 g blackcurrants
- 290 g caster sugar
- 2 tsp lemon juice
- 250 ml double cream
- 60 g caster sugar
- 3 egg yolks
- 2 egg whites
- 2 tsp vanilla bean paste
- A few extra berries to garnish the cake.
- Preheat oven 155°C fan.
- Begin with the pistachio meringue base. Take a large piece of parchment paper, with a pencil draw around the cake tin, place the paper on a baking sheet. Whisk the egg white until stiff peaks form, add the sugar a teaspoon at a time. When the meringue is thick and glossy, fold in all but 2 tsp of the pistachios. Pour the meringue onto the parchment, with a palette knife spread it out to form a 23cm disc. Bake for 45 minutes. Cool.
- Put the blackcurrants, 1 teaspoon lemon juice and 145g caster sugar into a small saucepan with 2 tablespoons water. Bring to the boil, then simmer for 5 mins or until the fruit is soft. Remove and cool a little. Press the mixture through a fine sieve into a bowl to remove the seeds and skins, (a ladle is really good for this job). Repeat with the raspberries and redcurrants. You should end up with 240g of each, so make sure you push through all the pulp. Set to one side to cool.
- Cut a large freezer bag down one side. Line the cake tin. Make sure there’s plenty of overhang, to aid removing the cake from the tin. (I don’t use clingfilm because I find it tears easily). Place the meringue disc in the bottom of the tin, you may need to trim it a little.
- Now for the ice cream: separate the eggs, place the 3 egg yolks and the sugar in a medium bowl with the vanilla bean paste. Whisk until pale and thick. In a separate bowl, whip the cream until it’s the consistency of thick yogurt. Fold into the egg yolks. Wash the whisk, now whip up the 2 egg whites until stiff peaks form. Fold one tablespoon into the cream mixture until fully incorporated. Then gently fold in the remainder. Pour half of the mixture into the cake tin. Now drizzle one third each of the two cooled fruit sauces here and there on the top. Add the remaining mixture, then add a little over a third of each sauce, leaving some for serving. Sprinkle with the remaining chopped pistachios. Pop it in the freezer, without covering. Once it’s been in the freezer for a couple of hours, then cover and continue to freeze 8 hours.
- Remove the cake from the freezer approximately 10 minutes before serving. Place on a plate, and decorate with fresh berries. Serve with the remaining fruit sauces, I blend them.
- select ripe, but not too ripe berries.
- No need for an ice cream maker however I do recommend using an electric whisk.
- store in the freezer, wrapped for up to 3 weeks.