09/08/2013 08:49 BST | Updated 09/08/2013 08:58 BST

Pudding, Pasta And Stuffed Crab: Recipes From Judi Dench, Nelson Mandela And Livia Firth

Philip Webb

Women For Women International have asked some of the greatest minds and talents in the world to tell them about the food they simply cannot do without.

The recipes come from all types of personalities - including Nelson Mandela, Judi Dench, Christiane Amanpour and Annie Lennox - to highlight one very important cause: celebrating the work of the charity that helps women in war-torn countries.

100% of the profits go directly to help women in need.

With a foreword by Meryl Streep, the recipes in the Share cookbook are varied (great for vegetarians and carnivores alike) and aren't overly fussy.

So, how does Judi make her bread and butter pudding? Read on for three very different recipes:


nelson mandela crab

This recipe, one of Nelson Mandela’s favourites, was created for him by his chef in Maputo, Esmenia Rafael Gemo.

Preparation: 15 minutes

Cook: 20 minutes

Serves: 4

2kg small crabs, cleaned and steamed

4 slices white bread

1–2 tablespoons of milk (or enough to soak the bread)

2 medium onions, finely chopped

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 garlic cloves, crushed

2 large red chillies (melegueta), finely chopped

1 bay leaf

1 tablespoon lemon juice

2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese

1 egg, separated

1 tablespoon finely chopped parsley

  • Preheat the oven to 140C/gas mark 1. Take the crab meat from inside the shells and cut it into small pieces. Retain the crab shells, as you are going to stuff them.

  • Soak the bread in the milk.

  • In a pan, saute the onions over a low heat in the olive oil until soft and then add the garlic, chillies and bay leaf. Increase the heat and add the crab meat and lemon juice and mix well. Remove the bread from the milk and add it to the crab mixture. Once everything is well combined, add the grated cheese and remove the mixture from the heat. Take the mixture from the pan and let it cool. When it is cool, add the egg white and the chopped parsley.

  • Put the crab mixture into the reserved crab shells and brush with the egg yolk. Place the stuffed crabs in the oven for 15 minutes. Serve hot.



She says: "I love this pasta recipe as it is incredibly easy, fresh and super-healthy. It’s perfect for vegetarians, and can easily be varied for non-veggies by substituting the pine nuts with anchovies or by playing with more fresh ingredients as you go along."

Preparation: 5 minutes

Cook: 10 minutes

Serves: 4

2 broccoli heads, cut into florets

100ml extra virgin olive oil, plus 4 tablespoons to serve

5–6 garlic cloves, thinly sliced

1 teaspoon chilli flakes

500g dried orecchiette (or pasta of your choice)

50g pine nuts, toasted

handful of fresh basil leaves

60g Parmesan cheese, grated or shaved

salt and freshly ground black pepper

  • Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil, add the broccoli and simmer for 3–5 minutes or until tender.

  • Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a separate pan and gently cook the garlic and chilli for 2–3 minutes or until the garlic is golden brown. When the broccoli florets are tender, scoop them out of the water with a slotted spoon and add to the pan with the garlic and chilli along with 120ml of the broccoli cooking water, reserving the remaining water. Using the back of a fork, crush the broccoli with the garlic to form a coarse purée.

  • Return the pan containing the broccoli cooking water to the heat and bring to the boil. Add the pasta and cook according to the packet instructions until al dente. Drain thoroughly and tip into a large serving bowl.

  • Top with the broccoli purée and drizzle over the additional olive oil. Scatter with the toasted pine nuts and basil leaves. Toss until evenly distributed. Season with freshly ground black pepper and serve with grated or shaved Parmesan cheese.


bread and butter

Dame Judi Dench says: "This is delicious and provides the perfect solution for what to do with those Italian cakes you get given at Christmas!

Preparation: 10 minutes

Cook: 40 minutes

Serves: 6–12, depending on portion size!

500g panettone

50g butter, softened, plus extra for greasing

10g candied lemon or orange peel, finely chopped

25g currants or raisins

350ml milk

175ml double cream

grated zest of ½ lemon

50g caster sugar

3 eggs, beaten

grated nutmeg, to taste

  • Preheat the oven to 180C/gas mark 4. Grease a 1-litre rectangular enamel baking dish.

  • Slice the panettone into 1½ –2cm slices and butter each slice. Cut the buttered slices into quarters and arrange over the base of the dish to cover. Sprinkle with the candied peel and half the currants or raisins. Arrange another layer of panettone in the dish and sprinkle with the remaining currants or raisins.

  • Pour the milk and cream into a measuring jug. Stir in the lemon zest and sugar, then add the beaten eggs and stir to combine.

  • Pour the milk, cream and egg mixture over the panettone. Sprinkle with freshly grated nutmeg. Bake in the oven for 30–40 minutes until just set and browned on top and serve warm. This is especially good with Butterscotch sauce (see below).

Butterscotch sauce

75g light muscovado sugar

150ml double cream

50g butter

  • Place the sugar in a pan over a medium heat and add 1 tablespoon water.

  • Heat, stirring, until the sugar has dissolved, then bring to the boil and cook for 5–7 minutes, or until you have a dark caramel.

  • Whisk in the cream, then the butter. Serve drizzled over the bread and butter pudding (above) with a scoop of cream or ice cream.

Buy Share online here.