Cosgrove Cook Book - Desserts


1 lb damsons            ½oz gelatine soaked in

4 tbs water                 3 tbs cold water

8oz caster sugar       10 fl.oz whipping cream

2 eggs                        (whipped)

1 egg yolk                  4 tbs double cream (whipped - for decoration)

Place damsons in pan with the water and half the sugar. Cover and cook gently for 15 minutes until tender.

Cool slightly, remove stones, then puree in blender or processor. Sieve to remove skins and then leave to cool.

Place eggs, egg yolk and remaining sugar in a bowl and beat until thick and mousse-like.

Heat gelatine gently until dissolved and mix into damson puree.

When just beginning to set, carefully fold into egg mixture with the whipping cream. Turn into a 2-pint mould and chill until set.

Turn out and decorate with remaining cream. Serves 8.

This is a lovely autumn dessert, with a good colour and rich flavour.



1 lb cooked sweetened rhubarb

1 egg (separated)

1 dsp caster sugar

6-7” Baked pastry case

Preheat oven to 150°C/300°F/Gas mk 2.

Add the yolk of the separated egg to the cooled rhubarb, stirring in thoroughly.

Transfer the mixture to the cooked pastry case.

Whisk the egg white, gradually adding the caster sugar, until the meringue stands in peaks.

Cover the rhubarb mixture with the meringue and bake in a cool oven until golden brown.

Serve hot or cold.

As rhubarb makes a lot of juice, it is better to cook in little or no water. A slice of lemon cooked with it will help to reduce the acidity of the fruit.



6oz breadcrumbs        ½ teacup marmalade

4oz SR flour                  1 4oz cooking apple (grated)

8oz suet                        ½ lemon (juice and grated peel)

8oz brown sugar          1 level tsp mixed spice

4oz currants                   3 eggs

4oz sultanas               Pinch of salt

8oz raisins                    Dark barley wine to mix

3oz mixed peel            

1-2 tbs brandy

Mix all ingredients together, adding sufficient barley wine to moisten the mixture. Leave to stand overnight.

Divide mixture into two pudding basins. Cover basins with greased foil or double greaseproof paper. Boil or steam for about 8 hours.

Leave to cool. Then re-cover with clean foil or paper to store.

To reheat, either steam for about 3 hours or put in the microwave (see your own instruction book for timings)

This recipe came from my husband’s grandmother. It makes a delicious moist pudding. It can be stored for at least a year but it is important to put a fresh cover on top before storing so that the pudding does not go mouldy.



½ pt water

¾ oz butter

Grated lemon peel and juice of 1 lemon

1oz plain four

4oz caster sugar

1 egg

Put water, butter and lemon peel into a saucepan and bring to the boil.

Mix dry ingredients and make a well in the centre. Pour in the hot liquid, whisking to prevent lumps. Blend egg yolk with a little of the hot mixture, then add to the rest of the mixture.

Return all to the pan. Bring to the boil and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes.

Add lemon juice and transfer into a bowl. Whisk egg white and fold in to mixture. Leave to cool and set.

When cold scatter crushed chocolate milk flake over the top.



6oz digestive biscuits

2½ /2oz butter

Magimix or crumble biscuits. Mix with melted butter and press into a round loose-bottomed baking tin.

3 eggs

6oz sugar

½oz cornflour

1lb curd cheese

4 drops vanilla essence

juice of ½ lemon

Put eggs, sugar and cornflour into magimix and mix. Add cheese, vanilla and lemon juice.

Bake at 160°C/325°F/Gas mk 3 for 30-40 mins


½pt sour cream

1tbs caster sugar

vanilla essence

Mix all the topping ingredients together and pour on top of cooled cheesecake. Bake at 200°C/400°F/Gas mk 6 for 5 minutes only. Cool. Decorate with strawberries and glaze with redcurrant jelly.




4oz 85% brown self-raising flour

3oz demerara sugar

2oz butter

Mix together flour and sugar and rub in the buffer. (Make a double quantity and store half in the freezer).


3 cooking apples

Dates to sweeten

Walnuts (optional)

Root ginger (grated)

Peel, slice and core the apples. Wash and place in a large oven-proof dish. Add dates and walnuts to taste and grate in a quantity of root ginger to taste. Stir the ingredients and cover with the crumble mixture.

Bake at 180°C/350°F/Gas mk 4 for 30 minutes or until top is gently browned and apples are soft.



Flan case:

4oz digestive biscuits (crushed)

2oz butter


¼pt double cream

6oz condensed milk

2 large lemons


Lightly whipped double cream

Fresh or crystallised lemon slices

Melt the butter and blend in the biscuit crumbs. Turn the mixture into a 7’ flan dish or pie plate and press into shape round base and sides of plate with the back of a spoon.

Bake in a slow oven (150°C/300°F/Gas mk 2) for 8 minutes. Remove from the oven and leave to cool. Do not turn out of the flan case as it will crumble.

Mix together cream, condensed milk and finely grated lemon rind. Slowly beat in lemon juice. Pour mixture into the flan case and chill for several hours until firm.

Just before serving, decorate the flan with a whirl of lightly whipped cream and the lemon slices.

Serves 4.

This flan freezes well.




8oz cooking apples

4oz brown sugar

1 tbs flour

1 tsp cinnamon

Prepare apples and mix with other ingredients. Put into a baking dish.


6oz rolled oats

8oz brown sugar

2oz margarine

Melt margarine. Mix in rolled oats and sugar. Spread over base. Cook at 190°C/380°F/Gas mk 5 for 30 minutes.



4-6oz plain chocolate

Swiss roll or sponge cake

Sherry or liqueur

Fresh or tinned fruit

Whipped cream to decorate

Melt 4-6oz plain chocolate. Lightly brush inside of a foil or paper baking case with melted butter or oil. Pour the chocolate into the case and spread evenly over the bottom and sides. Leave until set, then peel off case.

Fill the case with a little sponge cake or swiss roll soaked in sherry or liquer, and fresh or tinned fruit. Top with cream, decorate with melted or grated chocolate.

Raspberries or strawberries make a nice tangy filling.



4 fresh peaches

½ pt double/whipping cream

Soft brown sugar

Line baking dish with fresh peach slices. Cover with whipped cream, sealing all the edges. Sprinkle a fine even layer of sugar over the top of the cream. Get grill red hot and place dish underneath for about ½ minute or until sugar melts - watch carefully! Allow to cool when sugar  forms into a crisp coat on top of the cream. Store in fridge until required.



1 lb rhubarb (washed)

2 tbs sugar

½ orange

4oz rolled oats

2oz butter or margarine

2oz soft brown sugar

1 tsp cinnamon

Cut rhubarb into 1 “lengths. Put into a 1½ pint pie dish. Add 2 tbs sugar and juice of ½ orange.

For the crumble, put oats, margarine, sugar and cinnamon in a bowl and rub together until well mixed. Spoon crumble on top of rhubarb. Bake at 200°C/400°F/Gas mk 6 for 30-40 minutes or until crumble is golden brown.




3oz butter or margarine

2oz caster sugar

1 egg yolk

5oz plain flour

Mix butter, sugar and egg yolk with fingers in a bowl. Do not beat. Add flour until mixture just binds. Wrap and store in fridge for ½ hour. Roll out or press into an 8” flan dish. Bake blind for approx 25 minutes at 200°C/400°/Gas mk6.


2½ cups milk

1 dsp butter

4 dsp sugar

1 tbs cornflour

1 tbs flour

2 eggs

3 drops vanilla essence

Ground cinnamon

Bring 2 cups of the milk, butter and sugar to the boil. Heat carefully to prevent burning or use a double cooker.

Mix flours and ½ cup milk, add the hot mixture and return to the pan. Add 2 egg yolks and cook, stirring until it thickens. Remove from heat. Add essence and fold in stiffly beaten egg whites.

Put into flan case and sprinkle with ground cinnamon.

Serve warm or cold.



2 eggs (separated)

3oz brown sugar

1 tin pumpkin or 1lb pumpkin flesh

1 small tin evaporated milk

½ tsb salt   

1 tsb mixed spice

1 sachet gelatine powder

Simmer chopped pumpkin until tender and mash with sugar.  Add beaten egg yolks, salt and spices and heat until and bubbling.

Dissolve gelatine in ¼ cup hot water and stir into mixture.


Beat egg whites. Beat evaporated milk. Fold into cooled mixture and put into serving bowl. Leave to set in fridge.

Serve with whipped cream.



An American recipe

Sweet pastry (as for MELK TART page 52), partially baked 9½” flan case*.

3 eggs

8oz soft dark brown sugar

4 drops vanilla essence

¼ tsp salt

3oz melted butter

3 tbs black treacle

3 tbs golden syrup

8oz shelled pecan nuts

*Bake pastry case at 200°C/400°F/Gas mk 6 for 15 mins only. Set aside.

Beat eggs lightly. Beat in sugar, vanilla and salt. Chop most of pecans coarsely but reserve a few whole ones for decoration. Stir in the melted butter, syrup and chopped nuts.

Pour into the partially baked flan case and decorate with whole pecans.

Bake as before* for 35-40 mins or until filling is set. Cover with foil if the pastry becomes too dark.

Best when served warm with ice cream.