Have you ever heard of Jamun fruit? Jamun is a nostalgic fruit for many Indians, if not all, as it evokes pleasant childhood memories. While some might reminisce about gathering its ripe version that fell from a tree in their vicinity, some might recall buying this beautiful fruit from the local vegetable market (mandi) in India and gobbling it up with a sprinkling of black salt. No matter the memory, the one common thing was a tingly sensation on the tongue and a purple stain on the fingers.
Jamun is a summer fruit in South Asian countries like India, Nepal and Sri Lanka. It is recognised by its deep purple exterior and pinkish-purple flesh. It has as many names as it has flavour profiles. Also known as Indian blackberry, black plum, and jambul, this fruit is bitter-sweet, tart, tannic and just a treat for the senses!
From having it as is or adding it to beverages, salads or desserts, there are numerous ways of relishing this flavourful and healthy berry. Here's my take on this fruit in the form of a dessert loved by all.
Jamun baked cream
Baked cream is a classic and comforting dessert that needs no introduction. More commonly known as a baked egg custard, it is made with fresh cream, egg yolks and sugar. The yolks help in setting the cream, when steam baked, to creamy perfection.
The idea of adding Jamun to baked cream sprouted from the fact that this dessert is like a blank canvas. It showcases any flavour that is added to it. The creaminess of custard subdues as well as compliments the tartness and tannic nature of the Jamun. This dessert is innovative, fresh, easy to whip up, and an absolute crowd-pleaser.
Preparation time - 15 minutes
Baking time – 50 to 60 minutes
Setting time - 4 hours
Serves - 2
250 gms fresh cream
25 gms powder sugar
3 egg yolks
150 gms Jamun (available in stores in the UAE. You can substitute with blueberries or blackberries.)
4 to 5 drops vanilla essence
Gather the ingredients and pre-heat the oven to 140 °C.
Wash the fruits thoroughly and pat them dry. Remove the flesh from the seeds using a paring knife and set it aside.
Then add cream, sugar and vanilla essence in a bowl. Mix well.
Separate the egg yolks from the egg white and add the yolks to the cream mixture. Combine well.
Finally, fold in the jamun flesh in the cream mixture.
Divide and pour the prepared mixture into two 4.5-inch baking ramekins. Place the ramekins in a water bath.
Then steam bake it at 140°C for about 50 to 60 minutes or till the baked cream has a slight wobble in the centre.
Once baked, let it cool down at room temperature for at least an hour before placing it in the refrigerator for 4 hours.
Garnish with some sliced jamun and serve cold.
1. Steam baking is essentially cooking in the oven, where the dish is placed in another pan filled with water. The heat from the oven turns the water into steam, which in turn helps to bake the goods more delicately. So, do not skip this step.
2. Using room temperature ingredients gives the best results.
3. Use 2 egg yolks instead of 3 for a thinner custard.
4. Make this dessert sugar-free by replacing the sugar with two grams of sugar-free or stevia powder.
5. Instead of relying on a timer, understand the signs to know when it is baked perfectly. If the baked cream is quite wobbly, that means it is underbaked. If it is slightly wobbly, it indicates that it's perfectly done and if it has no wobble, it is over baked.
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