A silky custard set with gelatine which separates into two layers – one fluffy, one smooth. Spanish cream is an old-fashioned dessert, both refreshing and pretty subtly flavoured with vanilla and lemon.
2 Tbsp water
1½ tsp gelatine
1 cup full-cream milk
½ cup cream
2 strips of lemon zest
2 eggs, separated
2 Tbsp caster sugar
1 tsp vanilla essence
1. Put the water into a small bowl, sprinkle on the gelatine and leave for 5 minutes to swell.
2. Put the milk, cream and lemon zest into a saucepan and heat gently until tiny bubbles appear around the edge. Remove from the heat.
3. Whisk the egg yolks with the caster sugar until pale and fluffy. This will take about 2 minutes with a whisk or hand beater. Pour some of the hot milk onto the egg yolks, still whisking hard, then pour it all back into the saucepan.
4. Add the soaked gelatine, set the saucepan over a low heat and cook for 3–4 minutes until the mixture thickens very slightly. Don’t let it come to the boil.
5. Strain the custard into a bowl, discarding the lemon zest, and put the bowl into the sink filled with about 5cm of cold water. Stir every few minutes until the custard is warm, not hot. Stir in the vanilla.
6. Beat the egg whites until stiff and very gently fold them through the warm custard using a metal spoon.
7. Pour the Spanish Cream into 4–6 individual glasses or 1 pretty glass bowl. Put in the fridge to set for about 1 hour.
Add ½ cup fine desiccated coconut to the custard with the egg whites and pour on the top of some soft berries or other summer fruit.