Eton Mess

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Back in my young and carefree days when I was a teenager in London, I often spent the summer days at Regent’s Park which happened to be right across from our flat. Most summers we were travelling to India or Pakistan but on the holidays when we had family visiting us, we would have to amuse ourselves in London. I actually loved staying in London because I always had friends who were also pottering around. I enjoyed the plane ride to India but after a few weeks of heat, humidity and bugs, I was so ready to come home.

Many a day, my friend Sian and I would meet at the picturesque bridge in the park that marked a half way point for us. This bridge in the summertime was something out of a Monet painting. Brightly coloured flowers spilled over the sides of the bridge and onerous vines entwined through anything that allowed free passage. The air was filled with laughter of little children and often with music from the pavilion across the way. Here bodies lay sprawled across the lawn enjoying the music and the warm rays. The little canoes on the lake would be gliding through the shimmering water, as graceful as the swans that shared the lake with them.

Sian and I would walk for hours; sometimes to the Rose Garden that was heavy with scent and vibrant colour; sometimes through the endless green fields where men played football or families were having picnics. Then there were times where we didn’t go anywhere at all and we would choose our favourite weeping willow on the bank of the lake, close by to the bridge, and we would sit under the tree and watch the people go by. Those are some of my fondest memories. The simple things in life that I had the sense to enjoy at a young age. I guess I was a bit of a romantic back then too.

Every so often, we would treat ourselves to an ice cream or an ice lolly and once or twice, we got some strawberries and cream. So famously British, strawberries and cream in the summer time and yet, I hardly ever think to just grab some strawberries, a sprinkle of sugar and pour some cream over them. It was this scrumptious simplicity that I was thinking about today and what took me down memory lane.

I had a punnet of strawberries and wanted to make a light, fresh dessert out of them. I could’ve poured cream over them and called it a day, but decided to make some Eton Mess, having remembered that I still had some meringue drops left over.

I am sure many of you have heard about Eton Mess and may know it’s history. It’s a British dessert that was created at Eton College, one of Great Britain’s most famous schools for young men. It is served at their annual cricket match against a neighbouring school every summer. It is said to have originally been made with bananas with the strawberry edition coming a bit later. The meringue crumbs were also a newer addition.

However it was made or what it has evolved into, Eton Mess is simply luscious. It is easy to make, light and fruity with a pleasant crunch from the meringue cookies. A dessert that you simply must make when strawberries are in season and screaming summertime.

This is the traditional version with straight up strawberries, cream and meringue bits. You could make the meringue shells yourself or buy them ready made. Since I really didn’t fancy having the oven on for two hours in this already hot summer, I opted to use some meringue kisses I had left over from the last time I made this. This makes 4 generous servings.

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 ETON MESS

 
 
8oz strawberries, sliced
8oz heavy whipping cream
1 cup crushed meringue kisses/shells
3 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
 
Macerate the strawberries in 2 tablespoons of sugar
Whip the heavy cream till soft but firm peaks form, add a tablespoon sugar near the end
Add vanilla
When ready to serve, fold the strawberries into the cream, keep a few strawberries aside to top off
Fold the meringue crumbs and serve immediately.
Top with the extra strawberries and some crushed meringue if desired.
Enjoy.
 
 

 

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If you have never tried Eton Mess, you simply must! It is so easy to make and so simply delicious.
What are your favourite food memories and what’s your favourite summer dessert?
 
UPDATE: I am entering Eton Mess for the dessert category over at Weekend Gala Dinner Extravaganza #2 hosted by The Lady 8 Home. Great idea Minnie! This dessert is so easy and whips up in no time for a luscious ending to your meal.
 

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LOGO COLOUR jpeg Written by:

Indian by ancestry, American by motherhood and British by choice, I live in beautiful Colorado with my husband and four kids and, I love coffee...all kinds of coffee.

32 Comments

  1. 9/15/2012

    Another quick and easy recipe… I love it! Perfect for summer or even spring? :D

    My favourite memories of food are with my grandma – traditional no-fuss Chinese food :).

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      Nazneen
      9/16/2012

      Thank you! Yes, most definitely a summer dessert, and I love it because it’s so quick.

      I am sure that was the best food you had with your grandma and by far the best memories :)

  2. 6/21/2012

    I’m from the States, but I love all things British, including their food. Great looking recipe!

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      Nazneen
      6/22/2012

      Thank you Beth! As much as I love living in Colorado, I miss my hometown. There is no place like London and no place like England.

      Thank you for stopping by.

      • 6/23/2012

        What brought you to Colorado?

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        Nazneen
        6/23/2012

        Hi Beth,
        I moved to the US with my parents almost 20 yrs ago right after my A levels. We moved to Texas first.

        I lived in Colorado after marriage and then moved back to Texas and now back to Colorado. I love it here but I do miss my childhood home.

        Where do you live?

      • 7/11/2012

        I was born near Dallas, actually, but moved to Michigan when I was very young. I love Texas very much, but I’ve heard that Colorado is such an amazing place to live. I’ve never been there, but would love to go.

        Did you intend on staying indefinitely in the States, when you moved here?

  3. 6/20/2012

    My Mom used to serve us this dessert without even knowing it was British or that it had such a cool name. Strawberries and cream are one of the best flavour combos around.

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      Nazneen
      6/22/2012

      I would have to agree Eva. Nothing quite like strawberries and cream. It’s funny you were eating this all along without knowing it’s history!

  4. Just letting you know that your latest post gives 404 (page not found) and I can’t read your post but excerpt on Home page. It looks delicious! I love all the ingredients kale, feta, and potatoes in Phillo!

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      Nazneen
      6/19/2012

      Thanks Nami! I was messing around on my WordPress app on the iPad and inadvertently deleted my post!! Thanks..its up now.

  5. I’ve never had this before but simple deliciousness with strawberries and cream. Looks lovely too!

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      Nazneen
      6/22/2012

      Thank you Nami. You must try it…Eton Mess is just delicious, especially if you like strawberries and cream.

  6. 6/19/2012

    A marvelously summery English dessert! So delicious and irresistible.

    Cheers,

    Rosa

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      Nazneen
      6/19/2012

      Thank you Rosa! I love fruit desserts in the summer, actually anytime, just change out the fruit.

  7. 6/18/2012

    yummylisciously yummy

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      Nazneen
      6/18/2012

      I agree!

  8. 6/17/2012

    This sounds really delicious. I will try it this summer when I have some fresh strawberries in the garden.

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      Nazneen
      6/18/2012

      It’ll be even better with home grown strawberries. I can’t believe that the strawberry picking at the PYO farms is already over..I didn’t even get to go.

  9. 6/17/2012

    Beautiful photos! I have never had Eton mess, but I have read so many times about it, I must try making it at least once. My favourite summer desserts are now all those I’m making with agar: light, refreshing and easy to prepare.

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      Nazneen
      6/18/2012

      Thanks Sissi! I hope you give it a go then..it’s easy and very summery.

  10. 6/17/2012

    You have just reminded me of summers spent at the Serpentine. There is something about London Parks and the lazy afternoons watching the water and everyone playing, young and old. It’s when you see London really come alive. I have to admit ours was more Ice lolly – Fab and Mivi than strawberries and cream. GG

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      Nazneen
      6/18/2012

      OMG, you just remind me of The Serpentine! That was a bit further for us so Dad had to drive us, but we used to go there all the time too. I absolutely love and miss London parks. Here in Colorado we do have a big park culture so its nice and feels like home. I miss my ice cream come with the flake…it was my favourite. I did like the ice lollies too and we rarely actually ate strawberry and cream but it looked so good when other people were eating it that I had to try it a few times.

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      Nazneen
      6/16/2012

      simple and delicious!

      • louise Miara
        6/16/2012

        This certainly brings back good memories.

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        Nazneen
        6/18/2012

        Yes, but my memories with you are at the Indian restaurants!!

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