They say that necessity is the mother of invention and that couldn’t be more true for this recipe. The weather has been hot here in NYC and I was craving summer berry pudding, a British dessert consisting of layers of bread and berries cooked in a sugar syrup and placed into a mold to set. My goal was to make individual puddings but sadly, all but two of my ramekins were broken.
I didn’t want to make one giant pudding because, well, then I’d eat it all. I knew individual puddings would save me from myself (portion control, people!) and I wasn’t about to give up. A quick scan of my cabinets produced 6 (5 ounce) Mason jars. Yes! Not only would the jars work perfectly as a molding vessel for my individual puddings, they would make an adorable presentation.
Mason Jar Summer Berry Pudding
Makes 6 (6 oz) servings
¼ cup granulated sugar
¼ cup water
½ carton of strawberries (about 8 ounces), hulled and quartered
1 pint of raspberries
1 whole sprig of fresh mint (leave whole so you can fish it out after the berries are cooked)
1 large loaf of country bread or brioche, cut into 24 rounds the width of your jar
*optional- whipped cream
- Combine sugar, water, berries and mint in a medium saucepan and cook over medium-high heat until berries break down, about 6 minutes. Remove mint leaves and allow mixture to cool.
- Cut bread into 1/2-inch slices, then cut into 24 small circles, avoiding crusts. TIP: Use the lip of your mason jar or a glass to get rounds to be the correct size.
- Place one round of bread at the bottom of each jar. Spoon 3 teaspoons of berry mixture over each round of bread. Repeat with remaining bread rounds and berry mixture until each jar has 4 layers of bread and 3 layers of berries. Screw tops on jars and refrigerate for 1 hour. Puddings may be made up to 24 hours in advance. Serve right from the jar, garnished with a sprig of mint and dollop of whipped cream.