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Lemon Surprises

I really did not want to call these by their "real" name because of the ill sound it produces in my ear everytime I serve them to guests. They are "lemon sauce puddings"…uh…they are more like a cross between a mousse, a curd and a fallen souffle. They rise a tiny bit once in the oven, the top layer is a perfect tender mousse and when your spoon reaches the bottom you scoop out a nice lemon sauce/ curd. There are many versions of this dessert and the night I made these for guests, I noticed that Lisa posted one of them.

I found this particular one on a site that I love, Lex Culinaria, and the history behind them is as lovely as the outcome:

Lemon Surprises, adapted from Lex Culinaria:

preheat oven to 350F
juice and rind of 1 lemon
1 cup sugar
2 Tablespoons flour
2 egg yolks
pinch salt
1 cup milk
2 egg whites, beaten until stiff but not dry peaks form

Sift together dry ingredients and combine with yolks. Add in milk, lemon juice and rind. Fold in beaten egg whites.
Spread batter in bottom of 4 ramequins and place baking dish inside a larger baking dish or roasting pan. Fill outer pan with hot water until the water comes halfway up the sides of the pudding dish. Place whole contraption in the oven and bake for 35 minutes.

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MyKitchenInHalfCups February 6, 2007 um 3:14 am

Yes, these are surprises aren’t they. And you are so right about them being a cross between a mousse, a curd and an almost souffle!

Brilynn February 6, 2007 um 4:32 am

Your name is infinitely better! I think calling anything a sauce pudding makes it sound like something you’d make from a box.

Hélène (Cannes) February 6, 2007 um 7:04 am

Je viens de chez Béa la tartine gourmande et…pfouittt…, je me retrouve ici, dans un palais sucré où, comble de la chance, une petite recette au citron m’attend !
J’imagine déjà les contraste de texture au fur et à mesure de la plongée de ma cuillère dans les profondeurs du ramequin… J’ai des citrons juste mûrs sur mon citronnier, qui seront parfaits pour cette recette magnifique (tout comme ta photo, d’ailleurs !)
Je te glisse dans mes favoris, pour ne rien perdre de tes nouveaux essais sucrés…
A bientôt
Hélène (encore une…)

Anonymous February 6, 2007 um 9:34 am

In one of Jamie Oliver’s 'early works' he talks of his 'lovely lemon pud' that looks a lot like this lemon surprise. I made it several times and found the same mousse,curd and souffle described by you.

Lis February 6, 2007 um 11:33 am

Oh Helen, these blow my lemon pudding AWAY. Hubbs and I decided that although good the first two nights, after that our cake just soaked up the sauce – but not in a good way, yanno? So we ended up throwing more than half of it out..

Now these would be absolutely perfect. I’m going to show this to him later this morning and talk him into trying this type of dessert one more time. 😉


Patricia Scarpin February 6, 2007 um 1:21 pm


I’ve been meaning to make something lemony for quite a while now – I like your idea. 😉

wheresmymind February 6, 2007 um 1:57 pm

I could see why you might keep the 'real' name under wraps 😉

Anonymous February 6, 2007 um 4:43 pm

Your name is much more appealing, however if I had that in front of me, the name would be the last thing I cared about! Looks good!

Anonymous February 6, 2007 um 7:56 pm

Yep yours is a better name. Let the sauce be the surprise when you scoop it up. Never made these before but I’ve been hearing a lot of it lately, my intereset is perked!

Anonymous February 10, 2007 um 1:03 pm

The earliest reference for this recipe I have for this is 1902 (England) and it must be much older than that, I first had it in the mid 1950s and has always been a favourite.

Anonymous February 20, 2007 um 1:42 pm

I make this quite a lot – I love cream and lemon combo from heaven – and have always called it chocolate surprise pudding….Surprise no chocolate.

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