Apple Charlotte is a dessert made with sliced white bread and apples, a quintessentially British dessert, or so I thought until I started to research it! I was going to start this post talking about how Apple Charlotte was ‘invented’ in Britain in the middle of the 18 century for Queen Charlotte, the wife of King George III, but it seems like this is contested, with some food historians claiming it to be an English recipe and some insisting that it was invented in France. So, I’m leaving it to the historians to slug it out!
I’m living on an Island, in the middle of the channel between France and England, so I’m going to bring you an English/French version of this dessert 😀. I’ve used Bramley Apples (definitely an English variety) and I’ve added a couple of splashes of Calvados, an apple brandy originating from Normandy.
I made 6 individual puddings and although, making separate puddings may be a bit more fiddly than making one big pudding, I think that they look so much nicer if you are serving them up for friends (like I was). But feel free to use the same quantities of apples (and perhaps a little less bread) to make one large pudding in a 1 pint pudding bowl.
I also ought to add that you can make these desserts the day before you serve them. Prepare and cook the Charlottes, then cool and leaving them in their ramekins, cover them with cling film (Saran wrap) and place in the fridge. On the day of serving, remove from the fridge and let them come to room temperature before heating for 10 – 12 minutes at 350°F.
Now, all you have to do is to decide whether to serve it with British Birds custard or to serve them with French crème fraîche!