This is a holiday dessert based on the Charlotte Russe dessert invented in the 17th century for Czar Alexander I of Russia. No, it’s not just a clothing store for teens. The traditional Charlotte Russe is made with lady fingers or sponge cake lining a mould, filled with a fruit puree or custard, or alternating layers of fruit and custard. Apparently, they were very popular in New York during the 1930s and 40s. This is a no-bake recipe. Since the instructions are missing, I looked up some basic instructions, which will be below the ingredient list.
12 double lady fingers
2 envelopes unflavored gelatin
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 tsp salt
4 egg yolks
2 cups milk
1/4 cup brandy or 2 tablespoons brandy flavoring
4 egg whites
1/4 cup sugar
2 cups whipping cream, whipped – reserve a bit for topping
Candied red cherries and green pineapple or shaved chocolate, for trim
Split lady fingers; cut off one end on each and…
Combine the gelatin, sugar, salt, egg yolks, milk and brandy, and make a pudding. Cook over low heat. Line a mould completely with the lady fingers, making sure there are no gaps. Whip the egg whites and sugar into peaks, fold in the whipping cream. Here you can layer the whipped cream with the pudding, then top with lady fingers OR you can combine the whipped cream and pudding gently and pour that into the mould, topping with the lady fingers. Chill. When chilled, turn out onto a plate, top with a dollop of whipped cream and other toppings.