Thursday, 2 February 2017


Burn's night happened last month (as it does every year of course!) and this year I was inspired to rustle up a dish to honor this annual celebration. Scouring the internet I came across a pudding known as a Cranachan. This traditional Scottish dessert consists of crumbled up honey roasted oats, fresh raspberries and oodles of whipped whiskey cream. Well, I knew that was the dish I had to make, it just sounded so decedent and naughty. Without wanting to face the wrath of the Scots, I've added my own little twist by adding some seeds to the oats and a mixed fruit medley to the base. I think it's proper bonnie like! 

 If you do want to be more traditional then just use an extra 50g of oats to make your crumble to replace the 50g of seeds you will be removing. Cranachan is also traditionally made with just raspberries so whilst I've used mixed fruits in the base just to mix things up a bit, if you want to be a true to the dish use just frozen raspberries in your base.

Obviously you should also be using Scottish whiskey, oats and honey if you want the true Cranachan experience but my advice is just to use the best ingredients you can afford. Make sure you have a big old see through trifle dish to assemble your Cranachan in too. The recipe below will give you around 10-15 servings so it needs to be a big dish to fit everything inside it. The visual effect of seeing the layers through the dish is the real showstopping element that is going to blow people away, it really give the Cranachan that "wow" factor!


300g Frozen Mixed Berries
140g Unsalted Butter
4 Tbsp Honey
150g Oats
50g Sunflower Seeds
100g Golden Caster Sugar
100g Finely Chopped Hazelnuts
850ml Double Cream
250g Marscapone
6 Tbsp Whiskey 
140g Icing Sugar
700g Fresh Raspberries

  1. Begin by draining your frozen berries in a colander to remove any excess moisture. Leave the berries to drain whilst you crack on with the oats.
  2. Turn your oven on to 180 degrees (160 fan) and line a large shallow rectangular baking tray with grease proof paper.
  3. Melt the butter and honey together in a large pan until smooth and combined and then tip in the oats, sunflower seeds, golden caster sugar and hazelnuts. Mix everything together so that the honey butter has coated all the ingredients.
  4. Tip the oaty mixture out onto the baking tray to form a thin layer by pressing down onto the mixture to compact the mixture tightly together. 
  5. Place the tray in the middle of the oven and bake for 20 minutes. Remove the tray from the oven and then leave the oats to cool and go firm. Break up the oats to form a crumble and leave to one side.
  6. Now for the whiskey cream. Add the double cream, marscapone, whiskey and icing sugar into a bowl and whisk everything together until soft peaks are formed.
  7. You can now assemble the Cranachan. Tip the frozen berries into the bottom of your trifle dish and top this with 1/3 of the cream. Sprinkle over 1/3 of the oat crumble and then arrange 1/2 of the fresh raspberries on top of this. Make sure the layers come right up to the sides of the dish so it looks proper appetizing from the outside. Continue to layer the cream, oats and raspberries until assembled.

Your Cranachan is now complete. Bring this out at the end of a dinner party or take it over to a gathering and your friends and family will be amazed! It looks like it's hard work to make but really once you have all your components ready it's just a case of assembling them in such a way that it looks truly showstopping. All that's left to do now is to grab a big spoon and dish it out making sure that everyone gets a piece of each of the delicious layers. The fruity burst from the mixed berries and raspberries combined with the boozy punch from the cream topped off with that nutty oaty crumble make for a crackin' Cranachan. You'll be crackers not to try it!

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