Recipe

Plum & yoghurt fool

by James Lowe

A winningly simple fruit-dairy combination

I’m always drawn to more simple desserts. I love great dairy and fruit, so these are generally the things I build desserts around at Lyle’s. To ensure the food is still interesting, we pick all the fruit for the restaurant ourselves, which means we can find types of fruit that you can’t generally find in supermarkets, like loganberries in the summer, or experiment with the many types of plums we have in this country.

There is no such thing as a ‘standard’ plum—they are all so different, they react differently to cooking or baking and have wonderful variations in acidity and sugar. The important thing is to always taste everything you are cooking and think about what the dish will be like overall. If the fruit is overly sweet, remove sugar elsewhere. If it is slightly sharp, then increase the dairy or the sugar in another part of the recipe.

Ingredients

For the oat biscuit:
300g butter
270g demerara sugar
200g oats
10g salt
10g bicarbonate of soda
200g plain flour

For the yoghurt mousse:
250g cream
2 sheets bronze gelatine
110g whole milk
40g sugar
500g yoghurt
20 plums
100g honey

Method

Halve and dehydrate 8 plums overnight at 55C.

To make the oat biscuit, use an electric mixer to beat the butter and sugar until just mixed—do not cream. Add the rest of the ingredients and mix until just combined.

Roll out as thin as possible between two sheets of baking paper. Bake for 4 mins at 180C (still with baking paper) on a heavy baking tray, weighed down with another baking tray.

For the yoghurt mousse, whip the cream to stiff peaks then bloom the gelatine in cold water. Warm the milk and dissolve the sugar and the gelatine in this.

When the milk is cool, mix with the yoghurt, then refrigerate. When the mix is cold, carefully whisk in the cream until there are no lumps.

Cut the rest of the plums in half, remove the stones and sprinkle with sugar. Bake in a 100C oven until the flesh is yielding and the flavour of the plum has deepened.

To serve, chop the dehydrated plums. Take 4 large spoons of the mousse and spread flat in a mixing bowl. Drizzle with honey and sprinkle with dehydrated plums. Fold together gently—you want a kind of ripple.

Add 2 halves of the baked plums to each bowl, spoon over the mousse mix as well as some of the cooking juices from the plums. Cover with a big slice of the biscuit.

Recipe: James Lowe
Images: John Holdship