Baked Buttered Apricots

Baked Buttered Apricots

This is a recipe from Jocasta Innes’ The Pauper’s Cookbook. It’s cheap, simple and totally tasty.

This is a recipe that was on the old version of twimii and that is why it’s listed under the heading “old (and often inaccurate) recipes of twimii’s past”, even though the recipe is completely correct.

If you’re wondering what I’m talking about below, being “back in connected land”, when I moved into this apartment there was a problem with the internet connection that ended up requiring a little rewiring, and there is very poor mobile reception in this apartment, so I couldn’t actually connect to the internet while inside the apartment for a couple of months after moving in. So no, there isn’t – and wasn’t – an issue with broadband connectivity in Dublin that I’m aware of – though apparently in a few parts of the country there is, which is kinda crazy… 

Yeah, just rereading the old post there – I did put the recipe in my own words and used peaches rather than apricots on the day I made this – but it’s all correct. 

I’m back in connected land!!! And to celebrate I want to share with you one of the simplest and tasty (but far from heart-healthy) sweet treats I know. It’s not my recipe. It’s from Jocasta Innes’ The Paupers Cookbook which I love and have mentioned many times, and this is the last recipe from that book I’m going to add to twimii – simply because if I don’t stop now I’ll end up posting the whole book. Did I stick faithfully to the recipe in the book? No, it seems I’m incapable of following recipes to the letter. In fairness it’s not easy to find tinned apricots – at least I didn’t find it easy (they seem to be in more plentiful supply these days) – so I’ve used peach slices not apricot halves. It still works great. That’s one of the fantastic things about this recipe, you can try different tinned fruit and all you need to get this great dessert is white bread, butter, sugar and cinnamon. And the result tastes like something you’d buy in a patisserie.

The recipe from the book

I’m going to quickly give, not word for word, the Jocasta Innes’ original recipe which is simply, 1 tin of apricot halves in syrup, 4 thick slices of fresh white bread, butter, sugar, cinnamon – drain the syrup from the apricots into a small saucepan, butter the bread thickly on both sides, cut off the crusts, place in baking tin, press the apricots firmly into the buttered bread, sprinkle over the sugar (preferably Demerara), dust with cinnamon and bake in the oven for 30 minutes at 180°C (350°F, gas mark 4), make a glaze with the syrup in the saucepan and a little cornflour and pour over the apricots when baked.

If, like me, you tend to use salted butter in almost everything I have a little word of warning for this one; I used to always use salted butter with this and the result was lovely but I once made it for someone, had baked it for slightly longer than the 30 minutes and it was quite a while before we ate it and unfortunately the underside of the bread tasted very salty, so if you want to avoid this happening to you I’d advise using unsalted on the underside of the bread and then salted on the side the peaches/apricots will go on.

I used more fruit than the original recipe so if you are more of a bread than fruit fan maybe go with the original.

The way I make Baked, Buttered Apricots Peaches is

Baked Buttered Apricots

Baked Buttered Apricots


  • 2 x 420g tins apricot halves in syrup or you can use peach or mango slices
  • 5 thick slices of white fresh bread
  • unsalted and salted butter
  • golden caster or demerara sugar light brown sugar
  • ground cinnamon


  1. Drain the peaches, reserve the syrup from one of the tins in a small saucepan. Set aside.
  2. Turn on the oven to 180°C (350°F, gas mark 4). Spread a thick layer of unsalted butter on the slices. Spread salted butter on the top sides. Cut off the crusts. Place bread butter side down in an oven dish - no need to grease it.
  3. Press the fruit firmly into the bread. Sprinkle over the sugar and a generous dusting of cinnamon.
  4. Place the dish in the oven for 30 minutes to bake.
  5. When the dish is done, take it out of the oven.
  6. To make the glaze:
  7. Blend together a level tablespoon of cornflour with 1 tablespoon of water and add this to the reserved syrup in the saucepan. Heat and stir until thickened. If you like you could add some sweet white (like a Muscat or you could try adding some ginger wine) or sweet liqueur (like Ameretto) to give the glaze more of a zing. When the syrup has thickened pour over the pudding.

baked buttered apricots or peaches
It’s not a great photo of it but if you plate it nicely this will actually look like some pastry treat you bought.
So I went ahead a made a gf version. I used Kelkin’s Free From Gluten & Wheat White Bread. I used two slices layered on top of each other, buttered in between also with a sprinkle of sugar and cinnamon. Worked out quite well.

I just googled Jocasta Innes to make sure I was spelling her name right and I came across this article – oddly inspiring – you might like to read it too.