Marlow High

29 Aug

At last, a race that I can tell you about. The Speedo Marlow 3k swim, in the river Thames. After what can only be described as biblical weather on Saturday, Mr Cakes and I woke up to sun – lots of sun on Sunday morning. Hurrah, a race! We said, and off we set with Mr Bone to lovely Marlow for a lovely (long) swim.

Remember what I said about the Hampton Court Swim? That after 7 months of swimming coaching and weekly pond swimming visits to the Kenwood Ladies Pond with Mog (who won the wedding bake off, remember?) paid off. Well, I kind of can. I did swim front crawl the whole way, didn’t freak out when my face went into the dark, murky chilled water. For me, this is a first and an achievement to be celebrated.

The race itself was very well organised, all waves set off on time. As usual, the boys set off without me, but there were lots of lovely ladies to chat to before taking the plunge.

Swimming 3k takes time, especially with a strong current taking you back half a stroke for every one you take, but that just means more time to enjoy the journey (nearly 90 minutes of fun on my case)

So after all that, you must be hungry?Will bread pudding topped with nectarines do you? Okay then!

Nectarine Bread & Butter Pudding

Nectarine Bread & Butter Pudding
Serves 4

Ingredients
200ml whole milk
100ml double cream
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
3 large eggs
2 tbsp caster sugar
75g unsalted butter
8 slices stale tiger bread (Gail’s Pain de Mie is my fave)
1 tbsp brown sugar
2 nectarines, 1 chopped into small chunks & 1 sliced into wedges

Method
Pre-heat the oven to 180C/160C Fan/350F/gas mark 4. Whisk together the milk, cream, vanilla, eggs and caster sugar and set aside. Butter the slices of bread and cut each slice in half.

Layer half the bread into a 2 pint pie dish, overlapping neatly (!) and cover with the chopped nectarine. Pour a little over half of the milky mixture over the bread and nectarines and leave to sit for 20 minutes.

Layer the rest of the bread on top, pour on the rest of the custard and finally top with the wedges of nectarine and sprinkle with the brown sugar. If you have any butter left over dot this on top.

Bake for 35 minutes, leave to cool ever so slightly before tucking in. It’s also pretty good cold. You do forfeit a bit of the usual crunchy topping with the fruit on top, if that’s a deal breaker just put all the nectarine in between the two layers of bread, and sprinkle the brown sugar directly on the top layer of bread. Please feel free to substitute any fruit for the nectarine.

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