A Proper Fool

The British have an absolute genius when it comes to naming foods; there’s bangers and mash, which are nothing more than sausages and mashed potatoes, Welsh rabbit (the nomenclature is in dispute), a dish made with bread and cheese; spotted dick, a pudding made with suet and fruit; and toad in the hole, eggs or sausages in bread.

You can also include laver bread (seaweed), black pudding (blood sausage), haggis (stuffed sheep’s stomach), and many others, but my favorite is the fool.

In Britain, a fool is fruit in sweet custard, sort of an unfrozen parfait (which, by the way, in Britain is what they call a pâté). Some people will make a fool with whipped cream, yogurt, or (even worse) vanilla pudding, but to make a proper fool, you must make custard.

For six servings, scald two cups milk and add to  a blend of two well-beaten eggs with a half cup sugar. Put in a double boiler and heat. As it begins to thicken, add a tablespoon of corn starch blended very well in a tablespoon of milk. Once very thick, refrigerate.

As to the fruit, it should be chopped or sliced and macerated with a quarter cup sugar to two cups fruit. Layer fruit, custard, and stiff whipped cream, and chill before serving.

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