Jane Austen

1. Syllabub


This was our recording-day fortification.

Whipt Syllabub! Get out your birch whisk, your strong male servant, and lead out the cow (or take the whole party out to the barn) – the ball is over, and it’s time for a nightcap!

We cannot imagine how this fabulousness ever fell out of fashion. Its heyday was in the 17th and 18th centuries (though in an earlier period, the Tudors made their syllabubs with hard cider instead of lemon – perhaps an experiment might be in order.)

It’s so easy to make, in these days of electric mixers, (and dairy cases)  that we challenge you to whip one up for your next dinner party… You can do it!

Here is the recipe for the syllabub we enjoyed during the Jane Austen recording session. It’s a bit of a modern take on the classic, and includes no egg whites.

The night before, put your mixing bowl, wine, and serving dishes in the refrigerator.  (old cut-glass punch cups look great and are usually so inexpensive at the thrift store, because who serves punch anymore?)

This recipe SAYS it makes six servings, but we used some vintage tumblers (probably 12 ounce), and we each had one generous serving. Adapt accordingly!

Lemon Syllabub (adapted from Allrecipes.com)

1 cup heavy whipping cream, chilled

1/2 cup white granulated  sugar

1/4 cup sweet white wine (Riesling or Gewurztraminer)

1/8 cup fresh lemon juice (which is about the juice of one lemon, if you don’t feel like measuring it.)

1 teaspoon grated lemon zest

Garnish options: sprinkling of nutmeg, lemon slices, mint leaves, or a few blueberries

-Whip the cream and sugar in your chilled bowl, until the cream begins to thicken.

-Add the white wine, lemon juice, and lemon zest, whipping after each ingredient.
-Continue to whip until light and fluffy. (At medium speed, this was about 8 minutes)
-Spoon the syllabub into the chilled serving dishes; cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.
-Eat with a silver spoon, with your pinkie in the air, and serve accompanied by shortbread. 🙂

NOTE: This dessert can also do double duty as a drink – simply float a serving spoon full of the above mixture on a glass of cold white (or pink) wine.

Note the syllabub awaiting them on the tray!

(from The Graphic, 1874)