I often serve Syllabub when we have visitors. A great go to dessert for when you are entertaining but feeling a bit short on time, it takes no more than ten minutes to throw together and sits quite happily in the fridge for up to two hours before serving.
A very old English dessert, the recipe dates back to Tudor times. Popular throughout British history, particularly in the Victorian era, Syllabub originally consisted solely of sweetened cream mixed with wine. I add fruit and cookie crumbs or chopped nuts just to jazz things up a bit.
Served in pretty glasses or dishes, syllabub’s light, pillowy liqueur spiked cream makes an elegant and comforting dessert. Don’t be tempted to overfill the serving glasses or dishes – despite its light texture, syllabub is satisfyingly rich.
Fruit and crushed cookies add flavour and texture, making syllabub a versatile choice for just about any occasion. You really can experiment with this pretty much foolproof recipe, switching out different liqueurs and using different fruits. Try Amaretto syllabub topped with raspberries instead of blueberries, scattered with toasted flaked almonds instead of crumbled cookies. Another idea is to spike the cream with Kirsch, then scatter pitted cherries and crushed chocolate cookies over top. Elderflower liqueur syllabub would be lovely topped with strawberries and crushed almond flavoured cookies. In this recipe, the traditional Italian liqueur Limoncello adds a lovely tang to the sweet blueberries. Crushed Amaretti biscuits add a bit of crunch.
One thing that is very important – Be careful to whip the cream just to the soft peak stage. (Turn the beaters off and lift them out of the cream to test this. The cream should hold soft peaks but still be very billowy.) It needs to hold its shape a bit but you don’t want it to be as stiff as the traditional whipped cream you would serve on a pie or other dessert.
The dishes you serve your syllabub in can really make the dessert. Be creative. This is the perfect use for those vintage glasses you picked up at the charity shop or even the crystal wine glasses you have tucked away. This delicious dessert is the perfect opportunity to show off your treasures as well as your good taste!
- 1 lemon, zest and juice
- 1 cup sugar (caster or super fine sugar if possible, but granulated does work)
- ½ cup Limoncello liqueur
- 1½ cups double (heavy) cream
- about ½ cup blueberries
- 12 amaretti or hard gingerbread biscuits, crushed
- Mix the lemon juice and zest with the Limoncello and set aside.
- Gently whip the cream with the sugar until soft peaks begin to form.
- Add the lemon mixture and whisk gently until it is all mixed in.
- Divide the mixture between six glasses or serving dishes.
- Refrigerate until ready to serve.
- Just before serving, scatter the syllabubs with the blueberries and crushed biscuit crumbs. You can also garnish with a bit of lemon zest if you like.
If you enjoyed this post you may also like Blood Orange Syllabub