Cool treats for hot summers

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 08 July, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 08 July, 2012, 12:00am

If you don't fancy sweating over a hot stove during the summer months, but still want to make something a little bit special, why not try these two recipes: they require minimal cooking time.

Summer pudding

A British dessert dating back to the 19th century, when it was served as a healthy alternative to butter-laden pastry puddings.

Ingredients (Serves 2)

300g mixed fresh berries

4 tbsp water

1 tbsp muscovado sugar or to taste

4 slices bread, crusts removed


1 Wash fruit; dry on kitchen paper.

2 Place the water and sugar into a medium pan. Dissolve the sugar over a low heat, stirring a couple of times. Allow the syrup to come to the boil and add the fruit. Cook over a low heat for a couple of minutes, gently stirring several times.

3 Place a sieve over a bowl and separate the fruit from the juices. Set fruit and juices aside.

4 Line a 450g pudding basin with two overlapping pieces of cling film. Let the edges overhang by 20cm.

5 Cut a circle out of one slice of bread to fit the bottom of the pudding basin. Keep the trimmings. Cut the remaining slices of bread into 12 rectangles.

6 Dip the bread circle into the fruit juices for a couple of seconds. Place this in the bottom of the pudding basin. Dip the rectangular pieces of bread one by one and press around the basin sides. The rectangles should overhang the basin sides by about 5cm. If there are gaps around the sides of the basin, cut the bread trimmings to fill them in.

7 Pour the fruit into the bread-lined basin. Fold over overhanging bread and cling film and seal the pudding. Place a plate on top of the pudding and a metal can on top of the plate. Put pudding in the fridge and allow to chill for 8 hours, or overnight.

8 To serve, open the cling film, then put a serving plate upside down on top of the pudding and flip over. Brush the remaining juices over the pudding and serve with berries and yogurt, or creme fraiche.

Nutritional information per serving: 193kcal, 820kJ, 5.8g protein, 1.3g fat, 42.5g carbohydrates, 4g fibre

Prawn cocktail

A classic retro dish, this appetiser was popular in the 1960s and 1970s.

Ingredients (Serves 2) 200g boiled prawns

1 head romaine lettuce, washed

2 tbsp reduced-fat mayonnaise

1 tsp Worcestershire sauce

1 tbsp tomato ketchup

1/2 tbsp fresh lemon juice

Salt and black pepper

Dash of Tabasco sauce

2 lemon wedges to decorate


1 Cut lettuce into bite-sized strips

2 Make the cocktail sauce by mixing mayonnaise, Worcestershire sauce, tomato ketchup, lemon juice and Tabasco sauce together in a small bowl. Season with salt and pepper.

3 Divide lettuce into four serving bowls. Place an equal number of prawns on top of the lettuce.

4 Using a teaspoon, drizzle the cocktail sauce over the prawns.

5 Put a lemon wedge on the side of each bowl. Serve with crusty bread.

Nutritional information per serving: 171kcal, 714kJ; 23.9g protein; 5.7g fat; 6.0g carbohydrates; 1.3g fibre

Wynnie Chan is a British-trained nutritionist. If you've got a question for her or would like to be featured in this column, e-mail



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Cool treats for hot summers

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