This has to be the easiest emergency dessert to make providing you have the right ingredients. It’s fast, effective and difficult not to love. Fruit infused gins are lovely for providing an alcoholic kick to an otherwise innocent classic. The *gin cordials from Silent Pool are perfect here.
Eton Mess with Blackberry Gin
Makes 4 large or 6 medium dessert glasses
500 grams mixed berries, hulled and chopped
120ml of blackberry, damson or strawberry gin or *cordial
2 teaspoons vanilla sugar
250ml whipping cream
250ml double cream
3-4 small meringue nests (home or ready-made), lightly crushed
A few berries and fresh thyme to decorate
Put the berries into a mixing bowl. Pour over 120ml of flavoured gin and stir in the sugar. I used blackberry but damson or strawberry would also work well here. Leave the berries to macerate while you prepare the cream. Pour the whipping and double cream into mixing bowl and whisk until it visibly thickens. You want a soft whip here not solid so the meringue will easily fold in. Fold the crushed meringue into the cream. Lay out the glasses or a large serving dish. At this stage you can mix the fruit mixture into the cream but I layered mine. Its purely personal but I like the look of the layers. Start with a fruit layer followed by the meringue cream, spooning the gin in with each layer. Finish with meringue cream and decorate with a few berries and a sprig of thyme. Can be made a few hours or a day ahead. Refrigerate until required.