Keith's Cranachan

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“Traditional dessert of Scotland made with oatmeal and can be simple or fancy. The true "traditional" recipe calls for oats, cream, Drambuie or Whiskey. Nothing more. This recipe is a bit less plain and sweeter. Cranachan was originally served at All Hallow's Eve with charms in a manner similar to the English Christmas Pudding (ring for bride, coin for wealth, thimble for spinster, button for bachelor ...), but is now associated more with Burn's Night. Cranachan is creamy and has a lovely nutty flavor which comes from the toasted oats. My original recipe came from an old British cookery book. Over the years, I have altered it a smidge for friends/family and that is the recipe which follows. Please note I have put US or variations in parenthesis.”
1hr 15mins

Ingredients Nutrition

  • Ingredients
  • 6 -8 ounces coarse oatmeal (US ( 1 cup steel-cut oats)
  • 1 pint double cream (US ( 1 pint Heavy Whipping Cream, at least 36% fat)
  • 2 ounces drambuie (If desired, replace with 2 teaspoons of Vanilla extract)
  • 2 cups blackberries, and
  • raspberries (or use just one of the two)
  • 4 ounces caster sugar (US ( 1/4 cup Superfine sugar (a.k.a. "Bartender's" Sugar)


  1. Toast the oatmeal in a cast iron (or any other heavy metal) skillet over medium heat until lightly brown - about 10 minutes. Toss/stir oats every minute or so -- be careful to not let them burn. Remove oats to a plate to completely cool.
  2. Whisk the cream into a soft, thickened, consistency (just before peak stage).
  3. Slowly add Drambuie (or vanilla) and sugar to cream until combined.
  4. Fold in all but one tablespoon of oats (reserve for garnish). Then, fold in a few berries, gently crushing them a bit to give color to the cream/oat mixture.
  5. Using tall (parfait work best) glasses, make two layers of fruit and cream. Berries first - 3 or 4, cream mixture, berries, cream. You want to end near the top rim of the glass.
  6. Chill these for at least 30 minutes.
  7. To garnish, sprinkle some of the reserved oats over top and add 2 or 3 berries. You can do this prior to chilling; I prefer not since the oats remain crunchier this way.

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