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Lübecker Plettenpudding

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A dessert that really tastes like Sunday. Plettenpudding is a kind of trifle with vanilla pudding and raspberries. This dessert is featured in one of Germany’s most popular novels, the family epic The Buddenbrooks by Thomas Mann. The Lübeck-born author won the Nobel Prize for literature for his first novel which he wrote in his mid-twenties.


250 g fresh or frozen raspberries
2 tablespoons confectioner’s sugar

8 ladyfingers
1/4 cup sherry
1 cup heavy cream
4 egg yolks
100 g sugar
1 cup milk
1 vanilla bean
1-1/2 teaspoons unflavored gelatin
6 macaroons


  1. Sprinkle the raspberries with the powdered sugar and drizzle with 2 tablespoons sherry. Set aside.
  2. Cut the vanilla pod lengthways and scrape out the pith with the back of the knife. Place the milk with the vanilla pulp and the vanilla pod on the stove, stir in the gelatin and bring everything to a boil. Set aside.
  3. In the meantime beat the egg yolk with the sugar until creamy white. Put the still warm vanilla milk in a large metal bowl and continue to heat in a water bath. Slowly stir in the egg yolk cream and stir vigorously with the whisk or, better still, with the electric mixer until frothy. It should be a thick cream. Refrigerate until semi-solid.
  4. Place the ladyfingers in a large glass bowl or four dessert bowls and sprinkle evenly with the remaining sherry. Spread the raspberries on it, set aside a few raspberries for decoration.
  5. Beat the heavy cream until stiff. Stir again the semi-firm cream with the whisk and then fold in the heavy cream evenly. Spread the cream on the raspberries.
  6. Decorate the dessert with the macaroons, crumble a few of them and sprinkle on the cream. Finally, decorate the pudding with the remaining raspberries.

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