Platinum Jubilee: Lemon and amaretti trifle to be official pudding

Platinum Jubilee: Lemon and amaretti trifle to be official pudding

By Mary O’Connor

BBC News

Media caption,

Platinum Jubilee competition winner: “I wanted it to be the people’s pudding”

A lemon and Swiss roll amaretti trifle is to be the official pudding for the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee after winning a competition to find a new dessert.

Jemma Melvin created the dessert, inspired by the lemon posset served at the Queen’s wedding to Prince Philip.

The trifle is made with layers of lemon curd swiss roll, custard, jelly, a mandarin coulis and amaretti biscuits.

It will join the ranks of royal-inspired dishes, such as coronation chicken and Victoria sponge.

Some 5,000 people, aged eight to 108, entered the nationwide competition to craft a new pudding to commemorate the Queen’s 70-year reign, with entries whittled down to five finalists who subsequently competed before a panel of expert judges in a show on BBC One.

Jemma, a copywriter from Southport, Merseyside, beat fellow amateur bakers Kathryn MacLennan, Sam Smith, Shabnam Russo and Susan Gardner in a special BBC programme called The Jubilee Pudding: 70 years in the Baking, with the Duchess of Cornwall announcing the winner.

The competition was run by royal grocer Fortnum and Mason, in partnership with the Big Jubilee Lunch Charity, to create a pudding that had a memorable story behind it, tasted delicious, and was fit for the 96-year-old Queen.

But the most important requirement was that the dish could be recreated by viewers at home and be easily recreated at thousands of street parties planned up and down the country next month.

Image caption,

Dame Mary Berry said Jemma Melvin’s lemon and amaretti trifle was “absolutely wonderful”

The finalists’ puddings were tasted by a panel of judges led by baking doyenne Dame Mary Berry, along with Fortnum and Mason’s executive pastry chef Roger Pizey, former Great British Bake Off winner Rahul Mandal; Masterchef judge Monica Galetti, author and baker Jane Dunn, pastry chef Matt Adlard, and dessert historian Regula Ysewijn.

The shortlisted creations included a passionfruit tart, a Jubilee Bundt cake, a rose falooda cake and an enigmatically-titled four nations pudding.

The Bundt cake was based on a Victoria sponge with lashings of the Queen’s favourite tipple, Dubonnet, while the four nations pudding was created using Scottish berries, Yorkshire rhubarb, Welsh cakes and Irish butter and cream.

Jemma’s trifle was crafted with layers of lemon curd Swiss roll, St Clement’s jelly, lemon custard, a mandarin coulis – made with tinned mandarins – amaretti biscuits and whipped fresh cream. It is topped with more amaretti biscuits and a jewelled chocolate bark.

The winning recipe and the runners up are all available online.

After tasting the trifle, head judge Dame Mary said: “It’s absolutely wonderful; I think Britain is going to be so delighted – and the Queen too.”

Speaking to BBC royal correspondent Daniela Relph after her win, Ms Melvin said her creation paid tribute to three important women – her grandmothers, known to her as “gran” and “nan”, and the Queen.

Jemma said her gran had taught her to bake but the trifle was her nan’s signature dish.

She paid tribute to her fellow runners up and their “beautiful desserts and puddings, with beautiful stories”.

“That this quite humble trifle has won is quite surreal,” she added.

Talking about the judging process, she said head judge Dame Mary had “made me cry with her feedback, because it was so lovely”.

“She said I nailed it. And from Mary Berry, saying that I’ve nailed a recipe and a bake to a brief that she knows everything about, that was it – that was the moment.”

Image caption,

Jemma, the runners up and the judges pose with the winning trifle and other shortlisted puds

Jemma said it was important to her that everyone would be able to make her trifle, stressing its simplicity and the fact that it could be made with shop-bought ingredients, for those who preferred not to bake everything from scratch.

“I wanted it to be the People’s Pudding, not just for the Queen, but the whole of the country,” she added.

“Thinking of people making it up and down the country for their big Jubilee lunch – I think that will be the icing on the cake,” she told BBC Radio 5 Live.

Jemma admitted it still had not “sunk in” that her pudding would be joining the ranks of historical dishes such as coronation chicken and Victoria sponge.

The sponge, made with a buttercream and raspberry jam, filling became a favourite of Queen Victoria’s. After her husband Prince Albert’s death in 1861, it was named the Victoria sponge in her honour.

Poulet Reine Elizabeth, or coronation chicken, was created by the Cordon Bleu cookery school for the Queen’s Coronation Day banquet in 1953.