Geetie Singh's Port Stewed Damsons and Blackberries with Vanilla Shortbread
Quintessential British fruits, damsons and blackberries, and stewing in port with shortbread couldn’t celebrate that more. Double the shortbread mix to keep some for the next day or two.
Zest of 1 lemon
Half vanilla pod, seeds scraped out
200g plain flour
12 damsons, washed
200g blackberries, washed
50g raw cane sugar
1 cinnamon stick (3cm long)
125g butter at room temperature
100g caster sugar
300g plain flour
Preheat the oven to 200C/400F/gas 6
Place the shortbread ingredients in a mixing bowl and combine with a wooden spoon. Finish with your fingertips, making sure there are no lumps of butter.
Mould the mix into a sausage shape about 10cm long, wrap in clingfilm and leave to rest in the fridge for 20 minutes. Take the mix out of the fridge, slice into 0.5cm slices, and place on a parchment paper-covered baking tray. Bake in the oven for about 10-12minutes or until light golden brown.
Cut the damsons in half lengthways (down either side of the stone). Put them in a saucepan with the blackberries. Add the sugar, cinnamon stick, port and water. Let simmer on a low heat for about five minutes or until the damsons are a bit soft but still hold their shape. Place in serving bowls with the liquid and serve with the shortbread.
Taken from 'Geetie's Cookbook: Recipes from the kitchen of the Duke of Cambridge Organic Pub' (Grub Street, 2010)