Reported by Dorothy Hartley (Hartley 1954) as a thick batter of egg yolk, milk and flour folded into stiff egg whites. Baked as small rounds in a saucer and served piled up with stewed fruit, sometimes with a second saucer-batter 'lid'.
We can find no record of this dish, or anything like it, before Hartley, in written records, including newspapers and magazines back to the 1770's. It does not occur in any cookbook until the 1960's and we have been unable to find anyone in the area with any knowledge of such a dish. It is possible, that, like several others, it was a complete fantasy of Hartley's own invention.
However, correspondent Barbara Chamberlain reports that; "My mother who came from Lincolnshire made something similar in a saucer only with dried fruit with lemon zest but this must have been after WWII as lemons were not available and dried fruit was rationed. But I certainly remember her making this in 1946."
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Tewkesbury Saucer Batters
8oz plain flour
1/4 tsp salt
2 eggs, separated
1 pint milk
1 1/2 lb soft fruit
• Sieve flour and salt in mixing bowl and make a well in centre.
• Beat in egg yolks gradually, adding milk a little at a time and beating continuously until mixture becomes a smooth creamy batter.
• Leave in cool place for at least 30 minutes.
• Butter four ovenproof saucers, add fruit, sprinkle with sugar, cover and put in oven while it is heating up, until juices begin to run.
• Be careful not to cook strawberries for more than a few seconds or they go mushy. Take fruit from oven and leave on one side.
• Whisk egg whites until very stiff and fold into batter. Divide batter between four prepared saucers and put in top of hot oven (230°C, 450°F, gas mark 8).
• Bake for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown and coming away from edges of saucers.
• Sprinkle with caster sugar and fill each batter with fruit.
• Serve hot with whipped cream.
For similar fruit-and-batter puddings, see:
Batter and Fruit Pudding
Cherry Batter Pudding
Derby Batter Pudding
Kentish Fruit Batter
Nottingham Batter Pudding
Tasty Batter Pudding
Tewkesbury Saucer Batters
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