A light and airy fruit pudding from America’s past

Snow pudding is a great old American recipe that dates back to pioneer days, back when resourceful home cooks hankering for a treat had to rely on whatever they had — things like gelatin, lemons, sugar and eggs.

In fact, the very first edition of Fanny Farmer’s “Boston Cooking School Cookbook” back in 1896 featured a recipe for snow pudding. So let’s dust it off and bring it back for spring, topped with strawberries.

What makes snow pudding so foamy and light is all the air that gets beaten into it. With a stand mixer this pudding is pretty simple. With a hand mixer, it’ll take a lot longer.

I’ve sliced the strawberries, tossed them with a bit of sugar and spiked them with a shot of orange liqueur.

Sugar has the same effect on fruit as salt does on vegetables; it pulls out the natural juices.

If you don’t want the extra sugar and alcohol, leave them out. Other summer fruits — raspberries, blueberries, nectarines, plums and peaches — all pair up beautifully with the pudding.

Sara Moulton was executive chef at Gourmet magazine for nearly 25 years, and spent a decade hosting several Food Network shows. She stars in public television’s “Sara’s Weeknight Meals” and has written three cookbooks, including “Sara Moulton’s Everyday Family Dinners.”

Snow Pudding With Spiked Strawberries

The egg whites in this recipe are not fully cooked. If you’d prefer not to consume raw eggs, consider using pasteurized eggs or powdered egg whites. Serves 8. Recipe is by Sara Moulton.

1 envelope (1/4-ounce) unflavored gelatin

2⁄3 cup plus 2 tsps. sugar, divided

Salt

1 tbl. grated lemon zest

1⁄3 cup lemon juice

3 large egg whites, room temperature

2 cups sliced strawberries

2 tsps. grated orange zest

2 tsps. Grand Marnier or other orange liqueur

1. In a small saucepan, sprinkle the gelatin over 1/4 cup of water and let it stand for 5 minutes. Add 2⁄3 cup of sugar, a pinch of salt and 1 cup water. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, until the sugar and gelatin have dissolved, about 2 minutes.

2. Stir in lemon zest and juice, then set the saucepan into a bowl of ice and water to chill, stirring often, until the mixture is cold to the touch and has thickened to the consistency of raw egg whites, about 45 minutes.

3. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the egg whites and a pinch of salt until they just hold soft peaks, then transfer to a bowl and set aside. Transfer the cooled gelatin mixture to the stand mixer bowl that the egg whites were in and beat until frothy, 1 to 2 minutes.

4. Add the beaten egg whites to the gelatin mixture, then beat on high speed until the mixture is tripled in volume and thick enough to form a ribbon that takes 2 seconds to dissolve when the beater is lifted, 8-10 minutes. Transfer to 8 decorative glass serving bowls or large wine goblets, cover and chill until set, about 3 hours.

5. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, toss strawberries with the remaining 2 teaspoons sugar, orange zest and orange liqueur. Chill.

6. To serve, top each portion of the snow pudding with a big spoonful of strawberries.

Nutrition information per serving: 70 calories (0 calories from fat = 0 percent of total calories); 0 grams fat (0 grams saturated; 0 grams trans fats); 0 milligrams cholesterol; 18 grams carbohydrate (1 gram fiber; 16 grams sugar); 2 grams protein; 55 milligrams sodium.