1 1/2 pounds sour cherries
1/2 cup dry, fruity red wine
1/4 cup sugar
1 10 3/4-ounce pound cake
Rum Sauce:
1 ripe mango (about 1 pound)
2 tablespoons honey
1 tablespoon dark rum
1/3 cup water
1/2 cup champagne grapes, for garnish


1. Pit the cherries, and place them in a stainless steel saucepan with the wine and sugar. Bring the mixture to a boil, uncovered, over medium heat, and cook for 5 minutes to reduce the juices. Cool. (You will have 2 1/4 cups.)
2. Trim off the brown sides of the pound cake, reserving the trimmings. Cut the trimmed cake lengthwise into five slices, each about 1/2 inch thick.
3. Place a strip of parchment paper in a 4 to 6-cup bowl so that the paper covers the bottom and comes up the sides of the bowl. (This will help in unmolding later.) Arrange three slices of the cake on top of the parchment so the cake covers the bottom and sides of the bowl.
4. Place half the cherry mixture on top of the cake and crumble half the reserved cake trimmings over the cherries. Spoon the remaining cherry mixture on top and crumble the remaining cake trimmings over it. Finish with the remaining two slices of cake, arranging them so that all the cherries are covered.
5. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap touching the cake. Place a weight of about 1 pound on top of the dessert so it presses and compacts the layers of the cake and cherries. Refrigerate. (The recipe can be prepared to this point up to 2 days ahead.)
6. For The Rum Sauce: Peel the mango, cut the flesh from the pit. Place the flesh in a food processor or blender with the honey, rum, and water, and process until smooth. (You will have about 1 3/4 cups.)
7. When ready to serve, unmold the cake onto a serving plate, pour the mango sauce around it, and sprinkle with the grapes. Spoon onto dessert dishes at the table.

If champagne grapes are not available, says Jacques Pepin, substitute Red Flame grapes, cut into a 1/4 inch dice for the garnish.

Cherry Summer Pudding Wit
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