Make Letitia Clark’s Summery Spin on Classic British Dessert Posset

Letitia Clark vividly recollects her grandmother’s love of all issues dairy. “She was one of many solely folks I’ve ever identified that will eat yogurt with double cream on it,” says Clark, who grew up in southwest England and is now based mostly on the Italian island of Sardinia. “I grew up consuming clotted cream with and on virtually every part, like on toast, on cereal, on ice cream, on scones.”

One of many dishes she remembers significantly properly is posset, an old school custard-like dessert made merely of cream, sugar and lemon. Its texture is just a little denser than panna cotta—simply agency sufficient to carry the form of your spoon as you eat it.

My grandmother “was a really humorous prepare dinner; she was at all times impatient and indignant with one thing or pissed off by one thing and it was by no means boring within the kitchen, which made it fairly enjoyable after I was little,” says Clark. “If she was operating brief on time, she would make posset as a result of she at all times had cream hanging round. It’s such a fundamental recipe, however it’s one thing that individuals form of forgot about or is possibly just a little bit out of style as a result of it’s very creamy.”

In reality, posset has been a British basic for hundreds of years. The dessert first appeared within the 1400s as a beverage created from scorching milk and curdled with ale or another sort of alcohol. Typically it was even flavored with spices. Luckily, by the sixteenth century it had advanced into a much more interesting type of dessert.

When Clark was creating recipes for her second cookbook, La Vita è Dolce, which will probably be launched in just a few weeks, she knew posset needed to be included. For years, whereas she was working in London eating places as a chef and pastry chef, she loved “dreaming up candy combos and making puddings.” This e book, which is devoted to her grandmother, was the proper alternative to mix childhood favorites with the flavors of her adopted Sardinian dwelling.

“It made me take into consideration posset once more as one thing that I wished to recreate,” she says. “It was virtually at all times flavored with lemon—that sharpness cuts by means of the cream so completely. There’s one thing very seductive about its texture. It’s at all times comforting and utterly indulgent.”

As a substitute of the same old yellow lemons, nevertheless, she seemed to the citrus rising in her personal Italian backyard for a slight, however flavorful, twist. Right here is Clark’s knowledgeable recommendation for making her signature posset.

“I believe folks typically overlook about texture as a result of they’re so obsessive about occupied with taste, however textures could be virtually extra vital,” says Clark.

With posset, a wealthy, creamy texture is of the utmost significance, particularly because you’re working with so few elements. Double cream, which has a virtually 50 % fats content material, and sugar give it a “magical, silky texture.” (When you can’t discover double cream, heavy whipping cream will even work.) These prepare dinner collectively at a low boil till the sugar is integrated and the cream expands. Most significantly, the posset wants to relax for not less than two hours (however ideally in a single day) to completely set the elements collectively, “in any other case it’s not going to be very good to eat.”

Whereas lemons are a standard addition to English posset, Clark’s Sardinian backyard impressed her to strive one thing just a little completely different for La Vita è Dolce. When she was creating recipes for the e book, she discovered that her lemon timber have been stuffed with unripe, inexperienced lemons, so she determined to offer them a strive. “I found that I actually love their taste,” says Clark. “It’s form of like half lime, half lemon—it’s one thing barely completely different.”

When you don’t have entry to a lemon tree year-round, don’t fear. You possibly can simply recreate the flavour of 4 inexperienced lemons by utilizing three ripe yellow lemons and one lime as a substitute. The juice and zest of the citrus is solely stirred into the cream and sugar combination after it’s had a couple of minutes to chill. Then, it’s off to the fridge.

“The science of [a posset] continues to be just a little little bit of a thriller to me,” she says. “The acidity within the lemon coagulates the fat within the cream and thickens it, which is identical technique as making a bitter cream or mascarpone, however you don’t must pressure.”

As a result of posset is so easy, Clark likes to decorate it up. For this, she appears to be like for inspiration in a basic tart. “The identical three parts [of a tart] are there if you happen to serve a posset with some poached fruit and just a little shard of pastry or shortbread,” she says. “You’ve gotten these three textural parts with crunchy, creamy and juicy and also you’ve additionally obtained these three colourful parts.”

One among her favourite combos is poached blackberries and sage for a very Sardinian contact, however any seasonal poached fruit, like rhubarb, stone fruit or berries, works properly. She additionally contends {that a} piece of crumbly, buttery shortbread (just like the semolina shortbread in her e book) is crucial with the sharpness of the lemon.

“A basic English shortbread… is a bit like a posset,” she says. “It’s thought-about a bit old school and everybody’s form of forgotten about it. However once you eat good shortbread, it may be probably the most scrumptious factor on the planet. After which with poached fruit and that basically creamy, indulgent posset, it’s simply sort of the proper trinity.”

Makes 6 small servings


  • 2 cups double cream
  • .5 cup sugar
  • Zest of 4 massive, inexperienced lemons*
  • .33 cup inexperienced lemon juice*

*When you do not need entry to inexperienced (unripe) lemons, you possibly can substitute 3 ripe lemons and 1 lime.


  1. Add the cream and sugar to a medium saucepan and convey to a low boil. Stir gently (the cream will increase lots) and proceed to boil for a few minutes.
  2. Take away from the warmth and permit to chill for round 5 minutes.
  3. Add the lemon zest and juice to the cream combination after which pressure the combination (to take away the zest) into small cups or ramekins. Go away to relax within the fridge for not less than 2 hours or in a single day.
  4. Serve, with further curls of lemon zest on high. way of=rss | Make Letitia Clark’s Summery Spin on Traditional British Dessert Posset


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