Emergency pudding recipe

On Sunday, I managed to recover from an ‘oh my goodness, I completely forgot to do a pudding’ situation and ended up seriously surprising myself when the results of a frenzied rummage in the freezer and the fruit bowl turned into something completely delicious.

It seemed such a useful emergency recipe, I thought I’d post it here in case anyone ever finds themselves in a similar situation. The only thing you have to remember is to buy some ready-rolled puff pastry and a punnet of frozen berries next time you go shopping and hide them in the freezer ready for the occasion of your next pudding panic.

(Please excuse the amateurish hand drawn diagrams…I obviously wasn’t expecting this pudding to work out so it didn’t occur to me to photograph the various stages of its preparation.)



  • 1 packet of ready-rolled puff pastry
  • 1 punnet of frozen berries, summer fruits or similar
  • 2-3 pieces of fruit or whatever you can rustle up – I used a couple of apples and a very over-ripe banana but pretty well any non-citrus fruit bowl leftovers should do
  • 50g butter, cut into 6 slices
  • 50g sugar – ideally demerera but, this being an emergency recipe, any sugar will do
  • 1 egg (or some milk if you forgot to buy eggs.  Or nothing if you really are a hopeless housekeeper and don’t have milk or eggs.)
  • – Defrost the pastry (an hour or so at room temperature or 5 minutes in the microwave)
  • – Preheat the oven to 190C / Gas mark 5
  • – Roughly chop your chosen pieces of fruit and mix together in a bowl with the frozen berries (I left my apple pieces unpeeled)
  • – Unroll the puff pastry onto a flat chopping board or similar.  Distribute the slices of butter evenly along the centre of the pastry (lengthways) as follows…

  • – Sprinkle three quarters of the sugar on top of the butter
  • – Place a long, thin pile of fruit on top of the butter and sugar so that it sits in the middle third of the pastry, as follows…

  • – Brush the exposed pastry with beaten egg (or milk)
  • – Fold one third over the fruit mixture, followed the the last third so that it just overlaps, neatly covering the fruit inside, like this…
  • – Seal both ends
  • – Grease a baking sheet (and line with baking parchment if it isn’t non-stick) and lay it, greased side down, over the strudel. Clutching the board that the strudel is on, and the baking tray, turn the strudel upside down in one confident manoeuvre so that it is now seam-side down on the baking tray
  • – Using a shape knife, cut some slits in the top of the pastry, about 2cm apart, without cutting the whole way across, like this…

  • – Brush the top with egg (or milk) and sprinkle the remaining sugar over the top
  • – Bake for about 25 minutes until the puff pastry is golden brown and the filling is piping hot. Cut into slices and serve with something creamy such as creme fraiche, double cream, vanilla ice cream or (not and) custard


  1. Lesley Price says:

    Fantastic, just what I was looking for. Have puff pastry and berries in freezer that need using up. Thanks

  2. Eithne Vine says:

    Brilliant desert. I used frozen fruit, less butter needed I found.

  3. Shelly says:

    Lovely, easy and very tasty

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