Gillian's Larder

Herbs and spices
from the Cornish cooking shop.
Buy just the amount you need



Grandma Cox's Russian cream for Flora Day

russian cream

There are lots of recipes for Russian Cream, many using cream or sour cream, or both, but this is a real Cornish one (and more economical!). It was a favourite of Grandma Cox, Mary Moyle's uncle's mother, from Bonallack Farm, Gweek. It was a regular treat at Gweek chapel teas 60 years ago (and probably long before that).

"Grandma Cox was a strict teetotaller," Mary recalls, "and swore me to silence about the brandy. But she's no longer with us, so I feel it's all right to pass on her secret!"

  • 1 pint full-cream milk
  • A sachet of gelatine
  • 2 tablespoons brandy
  • Vanilla essence
  • 4 oz sugar
  • 3-4 eggs, depending on size

Add the gelatine to a little hot water to dissolve. Separate the egg yolks from the whites (use your fingers, or a pierced spoon—it's easy). Beat the whites to a firm froth. Stir the yolks and the sugar together in a saucepan, heating them gently.

Stir in the milk slowly, gently bringing the mixture to the boil. Just as the mixture comes to the boil, stir in the gelatine.

Gently fold in the egg whites, allow to cook for a minute, and add two teaspoons of vanilla essence (or more or less to taste).

Put the mixture into a serving dish and as it cools, stir in the brandy. Leave it to set overnight.

"When you serve it, top it with a dollop of Cornish clotted cream," advises Mary. Wonderful!

Display the easy-print version

If you like this recipe, please print it and use it.

I'd love to hear how you get on! You can email me at: gillian@

Good luck!

More great treats to try

Click to open.

Cornish saffron buns

saffron buns

Gluten-free shortbread


Click "Recipes" in the bar above for dozens more!