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For the custard:
250ml whole milk
250ml double cream
3 eggs + 1 egg yolk
40g caster sugar
20g malt extract
For the bread and butter:
100g spreadable butter mixed with 80g malt extract
400g loaf of white bread
For the fruit:
100g raisins soaked with 20g malt extract in 150ml warm water
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Preheat the oven to 160˚C (fan). Soak the fruit in warm water and malt extract and set aside until needed. In a saucepan, bring the cream, milk and malt extract to the boil, stirring frequently, then remove from the heat and allow to cool. Whisk the eggs, yolk and caster sugar until creamy then slowly add the mixture from the saucepan, stirring until combined. Pass the mixture through a sieve into a jug and set to one side. Stir the butter and malt extract together and spread on both sides of the bread, then cut into triangles. Lay half the bread slices in the bottom of an oven-proof dish, overlapping slightly. Drain the fruit and scatter half over the layered bread. Then layer the rest of the bread on the top and sprinkle with the remaining fruit. Pour the custard mix over the bread and leave to soak for 15 minutes. Bake for 25-30 minutes until the bread has puffed slightly and is golden brown.
Malt extract is included in the custard mix to add its subtle flavour whilst rounding the sweetness from the sugar. The fruit is macerated in a malt and water mix to sweeten and enhance their flavour and finally, it is incorporated into the butter to produce a ‘malt butter’ to spread on to the bread. This enhanced the bread flavour and produced a delightful golden crust.
For this recipe you will need to have a jar of malt extract to hand. Malt is made from barley, a cereal grown extensively in our region; it is made by sprouting the barley just enough to allow natural enzymes to be developed in the barley that can convert starch into sugar. At Muntons our malt extract is made by adding just water and heat – nothing else. We crush our malt and soak this in hot water to encourage the natural enzymes to convert the barley starch into sugars and then boil this to drive off most of the water leaving the sticky glossy syrup that you spoon from the jar. Jars of malt are available from health food shops and pharmacists.
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