Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Raspberry Blanc-Manger, or, Have We Learned NOTHING from Monty Python?

I hope you all realize that this week’s TWD recipe, blanc-manger, is a loaded gun just waiting to go off. Blanc-manger? BLANC-MANGER?! Do you not understand how dangerous this is? Has no one seen the Monty Python “Science Fiction” sketch, in which it is revealed that extraterrestrial blancmange [sic] puddings have come to earth to eat humans, especially professional tennis players, and that their deviously murderous plan involves turning all of humanity into Scotsmen and then winning at Wimbledon, since everyone knows the Scots are notoriously bad at tennis?!? WON’T SOMEBODY THINK OF THE CHILDREN?

BEHOLD the fearsome visage of the alien blancmange:


They may look fluffy white and innocent, but they wield a mean tennis racket and are expert players:

Fortunately, just when it seemed the blancmange was going to win Wimbledon--and by extension, doom the human race--some spectators were armed with spoons and knew how to fight off the alien intruders:

And humanity was saved once more…for now.
[To watch the foolishness in its entirety, the Monty Python clip is here. The killer blancmange can be seen just after minute three.]

Ahem. And now for something completely different! A mild-mannered, non-homicidal blanc-manger that wouldn’t know how to play tennis to save its life. Although, I wouldn’t be surprised if this blanc-manger WAS an alien lifeform, it was so out-of-this-world delicious. [Thank you, thank you, I’ll be here all week!]
Seriously. I wasn’t expecting to enjoy this dessert much at all. First of all, my only exposure to blanc-manger was in the form of British sketch comedy (see above). Secondly, the description didn’t wow me: a dessert that mostly consisted of gelatin, milk, and whipped cream? Ewww. I am soooo not a fan of desserts with lots of heavy cream. I basically only made it so I could talk about Monty Python on the blog.

Well, the joke’s on me, because I loved, loved, LOVED this puppy. It might be the single biggest pleasant surprise to come from my TWD experience so far. I used fresh raspberries in the blanc-manger, and lots of fresh berries and berry coulis on top. I used really fresh finely ground almonds, and set it all on a base of vanilla sponge cake. The combination of the fresh berries, the lighter-than-air mousse texture with a hint of flavor and substance from the almonds, and the little bit of texture from the cake…fabulous! It’s indecent how much I’ve already eaten, standing over the kitchen sink.

So MAJOR ups to Susan of Sticky, Gooey, Creamy, Chewy, for introducing me to such an awesome dessert! Did everyone else love it as much as I did?

25 comments:

  1. Ha! I love Monty Python, but I haven't seen the thing about blancmange! Thanks for sharing and for the laugh. This cracked me up. (I saw Spamalot on Broadway twice last year--it was HILARIOUS!)
    And now about your berry blanc-manger--holy cow--it looks beautiful and delicious! Seriously gorgeous and I'm happy that you love it so much. (I'm not big on whipped creamy desserts either.) I went a whole different direction with mine.
    Great perfect slicing of yours, too!

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  2. WOW! I'm floored, Liz.

    The most beautiful blanc-manger I think I'll ever see.

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  3. WOW! I'm floored, Liz.

    The most beautiful blanc-manger I think I'll ever see.

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  4. It's beautiful - but I'll be laughing about the blanc manger playing tennis all day.

    I loved Monty Pyton.

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  5. Hilarious! And yours is beautiful . . . your coulis application is perfect!

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  6. Out of this world presentation! I wish mine looked half that good.
    Well done!

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  7. Monty Python is a hoot, and loved the clip. Hadn't seen it in ages.

    And an absolutely BEAUTIFUL manger. And with the coulis on top - incredible.

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  8. First, it's great to find another Monty Python fan! Second, your blanc manger looks beautiful. Finally, I also loved this dessert, and like you, ate an indecent amount because it tastes "light." Ha!

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  9. OMG you blew us all out of the water with your gorgeous blanc manger. Yes I agree I was really not expecting to like this as much as I did. Luscious sweet cream and sweet tart fruit to balance Wow and its so easy to make. Well, I didn't go to quite as much trouble but maybe next time I'll try it on a cake. Great job
    AmyRuth

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  10. Thanks for the great Monty Python skit recap. It's one of my favorites. It's the only reason I had any clue what a Blancmange is. And the recipe looks good also, I'll have to put it on my "to try" list.

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  11. Freaking awesome - "and now for something completely different" - hahaha! Oh how I love Monty Python... And your blancmanger is just gorgeous! You're the first I've seen to use a spongecake base, and I'm kicking myself for not trying that out.

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  12. You made the most beautiful blanc-manger I've ever seen! The raspberry coulis looks just like what I imagined it would dripping down the sides of the blanc-manger. The raspberry/mint leaf garnish is arranged so nicely - it looks fresh out of the bakery!
    (And thanks for the MP clip, I can finally hear how 'blanc-manger' is suppose to sound like!)

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  13. I have no idea about Monty Python, but your blanc manger looks great! It's had such mixed reviews, I'm wondering whether to try it or not? Didn't the almond texture bother you? That seems to be the main complaint of others!

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  14. It looks fabulous with the sponge base and coulis! I didn't think I'd like this either and had to push myself to make it. I'm glad I did!

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  15. Your blanc manger looks awesome! I love the sponge cake base. Love Monty Python too!

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  16. Yea for you doing blancmange!! I didn't understand the significance of the last post and the layered jello because I grew up in England where blancmange is everywhere, or at least it used to be. Sadly there are many grim versions of said dessert which mostly come out of a packet but you did the real thing...well done!! I wish I could have some right now!!

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  17. Thanks for Monty Python!
    Your blanc manger is really, really beautiful!
    I love your presentation with your raspberry coulis.

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  18. Wow. Your blanc-manger is really beautiful. So much prettier than the giant monty python alien version. Great post.

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  19. This is the perfect post. Where else can you find a Monty Python clip that ties in with our dessert? And you coulis is perfection!

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  20. Perfection. Just beautiful.

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  21. Eddie Izzard! I love the name of this blog. :)

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  22. So glad you liked this one! Your blanc-manger turned out perfectly! It's gorgeous! Well done!:)

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  23. Hahaha great, great, great post! I was cracking up! This one surprised me as well... I LOVED it. Gorgeous job.

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  24. Any excuse to feature a tennis-playing blancmange on your blog... we see right through you! haha.

    That said, I adore your TWD version, homocidal or not... mmmm.

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  25. Blancmange (pronounced blommonj) contains NO gelatin, just milk, sugar and pre flavoured corn-starch; and is, as far as I can tell, the nearest thing to what Americans call "pudding" I never heard of anyone making it with cream either though that does sound very nice

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