Heston's Cherry and chocolate pudding

"Give mum a break this Mother’s Day! What looks like a very complicated dessert is actually made up of easy-to-make layers that can be done one at a time by kids of all ages, even grown-up ones! It’s a good idea to do steps 1 and 2 in advance so the jelly has a chance to set before serving. Make sure you use a good quality balsamic vinegar for extra depth of flavour and whether you use alcohol is up to you – it’s just as good with apple and cherry juice." Heston


100ml amaretto liqueur (or Copella Apple & Cherry juice)
Finely grated zest and juice of 2 limes
1 tbsp white caster sugar (omit if using apple & cherry juice)
10 sponge fingers
2 x 425g cans essential Waitrose Black Cherries in Light Syrup
2 leaves of gelatine, softened in cold water
1/2 tsp balsamic vinegar
225g Cooks’ Ingredients Dark Chocolate 75% cocoa solids
450g essential Waitrose Fresh Custard
200ml essential Waitrose whipping cream
1 tbsp icing sugar
Amaretti biscuits, crushed


For the base: Mix the amaretto (or apple and cherry juice), lime juice and sugar (omit if using fruit juice) in a bowl and stir until the sugar has dissolved. Place the sponge fingers in a shallow dish and cover with the liquid. Leave for approximately 5 minutes or until all the liquid has been absorbed. Using a spoon, break the sponge fingers into small pieces and press them into the bottom of a large glass bowl or 8 individual glasses.

For the jelly: Drain the liquid from the cherries and pour it into a saucepan. Roughly chop the cherries and add them to the liquid. Place the saucepan over a medium-high heat, bring to the boil and allow the liquid to bubble until it has reduced by half (approximately 5 minutes). When reduced, remove the pan from the heat and add the balsamic vinegar and softened gelatine to the warm liquid. Stir until the gelatine has completely melted and allow to cool. Pour the cherries and liquid into the bowl (or glasses) on top of the sponge fingers and place the bowl (or glasses) in the fridge for 45 minutes, or until the jelly has set.

For the chocolate custard: Melt 150g of the chocolate in a bowl over a pan of simmering water. Once melted, remove the bowl from the heat and allow to cool before adding the custard and mixing until thoroughly combined.

For the cream: Place the whipping cream in a bowl and whisk to firm peaks. Stir 2 tablespoons of the cream into the custard then fold the lime zest and icing sugar into the remaining cream.

To serve: Once the jelly has set, spoon the chocolate custard on top and place the dessert in the fridge. Just before serving, pipe or spoon the lime cream on top of the custard and grate the remaining chocolate over the top. Sprinkle with crushed amaretti biscuits.

Copyright © Heston Blumenthal 2011

Heston's Cherry and chocolate pudding

Serves: 8

Nutritional Info

Typical values per serving:

Energy 1966.48kJ
Fat 25.6g
Saturated Fat 15.3g
Carbohydrate 53.3g
Sugars 44.8g
Salt 0.2g

£1.41 per serving

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4 stars

Average user rating Based on 586 ratings

This recipe was first published in Fri Apr 01 15:20:02 BST 2011.