This is an absolute classic in my family. Granny Smith makes the best blancmange and we all try to make it too. This is a slightly simplified version but is equally delicious. It also isn’t a traditional blancmange recipe in the sense that it doesn’t include cornflour and milk. It is much simpler than that.
The reason I have called this a simplified version is because I just add the evaporated milk to the jelly and then leave to set. Granny Smith normally whisks the evaporated milk and jelly with an electric hand whisk to create a lighter texture full of little bubbles. It is almost like a firm mousse. This is delicious too but I like the simplicity of just adding the two ingredients and leaving to set (not to mention less washing up) and I also like the smooth texture of the blancmange made this way. Don’t dismay though – Granny Smith approves of both versions.
I have layered the blancmange and jelly so that you can see the different colours and taste the different textures. I have used jars for this but you can easily use any type of glass. You can also use a jelly mould for the dessert but I find it easier for everyone to have their own individual desserts (always a good idea in my family).
I also love this dessert because you can make a low calorie version using sugar free jelly and light evaporated milk for the blancmange and low fat creme fraiche for the white chocolate cream.
STRAWBERRY BLANCMANGE WITH WHITE CHOCOLATE CREAM
Ingredients (makes 4 desserts):
3 sachets strawberry jelly crystals (or any flavour you want)
1 tin evaporated milk (410g)
16 strawberries (you may need more or less depending on the size of your mould)
1 tsp caster sugar
100g white chocolate
2 heaped tbsp creme fraiche, at room temperature
- Start by lining the bottom of the jar with the strawberries. Create a sugar syrup by mixing a little boiling water with the caster sugar. Cut the strawberries into four slices. Use the centre slices to fill the outside of the glass. Keep the outer edges to one side as we will use these on top of the white chocolate cream as a garnish
- Take the two centre slices, dip the larger side of strawberry into the sugar syrup and then stick the dipped side of the strawberry to the inside of the glass. The sugar syrup acts as a glue and will hold the strawberry in place while you pour the blancmange into the jars. Continue sticking the strawberries until you have filled the bottom of the glass.
- You can easily miss the step out and add some chopped strawberries to the jelly layer or simply pile the strawberries on top of the jelly at the end.
- Next make the blancmange. Pour 1 and 1/2 sachets of jelly crystals into a measuring jug. Then add about 10 – 20 ml of boiling water to the jelly and whisk until all of the jelly crystals have dissolved. Next add the evaporated milk. Whisk until well mixed and then gently slowly pour the liquid into the jars trying not to dislodge any of the strawberries. Place the jars into the fridge to allow the blancmange to set.
- Once the blancmange is set, make the jelly. I like to make the jelly firmer than the directions for this dessert to make sure that the jelly holds. Make the jelly using the remaining 1 and 1/2 sachets of jelly crystals. Again simply melt the jelly with 10 – 20 boiling water. Whisk until all of the jelly crystals have dissolved. Then top with 400ml of cold water. Add to the jars and then place back in the fridge to chill.
- For the white chocolate cream, simply melt the white chocolate and then add the creme fraiche. The cream will turn glossy and will be smooth and creamy. It is light and isn’t too sweet as the white chocolate contrasts with the sharp creme fraiche. It is important that the creme fraiche is at room temperature or the melted chocolate will seize up when it meets the cold creme fraiche and you will be left with a lumpy cream. It certainly isn’t inedible but it is nice to have a smooth cream.
- Top the jelly with a few spoonfuls of white chocolate cream. Then pile on a couple of strawberries.
- Finally, dust with a little icing sugar.
- As an added extra for decorative effect, I have tied a little white bow around the jars to break up the red colours.