Lemon pudding

Serves 8

I first had this in my native Australia, where it's a firm favourite. Don't be daunted – it's easy and quick to make, and when it's ready, you'll have a golden-sponge topping hiding a beautifully oozing creamy sauce. It's simplicity itself for a dinner party – prepare it beforehand and slip it into the oven as everyone starts their main course.

2 lemons
60g/21/2oz unsalted butter
275g/9oz caster sugar
3 eggs, separated
3 tbsp self-raising flour
275ml/9fl oz milk

Heat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas4 and butter a one-litre ovenproof dish. Zest one of the lemons and juice them both.

In a food processor, cream the butter with the lemon juice and sugar, then add the egg yolks.

Add the flour and milk alternately to make a smooth batter. Scrape all the mixture from the sides of the food processor into a bowl. Add the lemon zest and stir well to combine.

In a separate bowl, whisk the egg whites until soft peaks form, then fold into the batter. Pour the lemon pudding into the prepared dish and place in a roasting tin.

Pour boiling water into the roasting tin: it should come halfway up the side of the dish. Place on the middle shelf of the hot oven and bake for one hour.

Remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly. Serve with double cream.

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