Benham & Froud
A gateway to gustatory creativity
The Christmas Jelly Box is now SOLD OUT. Subscribe to the mailing list to get the latest updates on the release of Prelude II!
This Christmas, Bompas & Parr tremble towards a luxury jelly renaissance with Benham & Froud. Be part of creating, testing and setting a wobbly foundation for a future of gourmet puddings. Discover the website benhamandfroud.com and wobble forth!
The practice, defined variously as architectural foodsmiths, culinary deviants and more pragmatically experience designers has developed the Benham & Froud Prelude - a pre-launch jelly box, containing a set of jelly cubes, made from real fruit and spirits, along with a pair of jelly moulds so that you can make superb jellies at home. This will be the first jelly product the creative studio has realised after setting out as jelly enthusiasts back in 2007; so it is 13 years in the making.
The Benham & Froud Christmas 2020 Jelly Box
Each glorious festive box included:
-Gin and Blackberry jelly cubes
-Raspberry and Mandarin Basil jelly cubes
-2 x 600ml pâtissier’s jelly moulds
-Recipe booklet - For each jelly set we’ll include three recipes to get your culinarily inspiration flowing
-Membership of Orb & Cross
-Invitational jelly masterclass (hosted virtually)
-Electroformed copper mould for the champion jelly
Delivered in time for Christmas, each box will contain jelly cubes and moulds to make two 600ml jellies, each serving six people.
Each supporter and participant in Benham & Froud’s Prelude will gain membership to the Orb & Cross, a small cohort of jelly aficionados for whom will preview new and exclusive releases, host private events and offer otherwise unobtainable services.
You can also just eat the jelly, revelling in your support for the mission to return the pudding to its once elevated (and delicious) position.
The tale of Benham & Froud
Benham & Froud revives the fortunes of the British company, founded in 1785, that once made the ‘Rolls Royce of jelly moulds’, all stamped with a signature orb and cross.
The company was established in Chandos Street in 1785 as a coppersmith and brazier, and has a history that mirrors the rise and fall of jelly as a dish. In 1821, they made the replacement orb and cross for St Paul’s cathedral and adopted the famous sigil that marks the most remarkable historic copper jelly moulds of yesteryear.
Bompas & Parr started out as an artisanal jelly company in 2007. The initial aim was to launch a jelly product. Our first architecturally designed jelly mould was, by chance, St Paul’s Cathedral. Along the way the studio was positively distracted by many spirited culinary adventures. Now, through the launch of Benham & Froud, the true wobbly calling has been rediscovered.
Quivering highlights include...
-Authoring the definitive book on making jellies aged 26, Jelly with Bompas & Parr
-Making the world’s biggest jelly, over 50 tonnes, set around SS Great Britain
-Elected Fellows of the Royal Society of Arts for creative work with the medium of jelly
-Being barred from WIRED Live for using a series of IEDs to explode jellies
-Collaborating with Heston Blumenthal, Lord Foster and Lord Rogers to make jelly
-Creating the world’s first food hologram - an image of Jesus set inside a jelly
The Ambition - Quality is Paramount
Benham & Froud jellies distil more than a decade of radical jelly experimentation into simple, use-at-home jelly cubes that offer a gateway to gustatory creativity. These are supported by seasonal collections of luxury copper moulds. Benham & Froud restores jelly, once one of the greatest British dishes to its pedestal of culinary glory.
A Brief History of Jelly
The Glory Days
The fortunes of Benham & Froud reflects the glory days of jelly through the 18th and 19th century.
The company authored some of the most innovative and ambitious copper moulds, such as the Alexander Cross and Brunswick Star (in 1863 and 1864 respectively) to celebrate a royal wedding. These notorious jelly moulds have inserts that allow the pudding to be shot through with a different coloured gel, like a wobbly stick of rock. They are the zenith of master jellying: combining technology and ingenuity, with culinary knowledge, topicality and gentle humour.
In the post-war slide to convenience and value, jellies lost their pedigree and Benham & Froud lost its market. There was no desire for elaborate copper moulds. The company is not found in directories after 1924, the dawn of the jellying dark age of the 20th century. The horrors of set salads, compounded by terrible, cheap ingredients and the lurid frenetics of children’s parties diminished the pudding’s mystique. Prestige collapsed with instant products.
By a strange twist of fate St Paul’s Cathedral was the first architectural jelly mould made by Bompas & Parr to launch the Architectural Jelly Design Competition. The orb and cross logo of Benham & Froud is drawn from their gilding of the cathedral’s finials.
#BENFRO - A note on our hashtag
Whilst looking through the history of the company in the Metropolitan Archives we came across an invoice from 1891 which had the phrase ‘Telegrams –:“BENFRO, LONDON”’. And, thinking of our future needs, the hashtag BENFRO was born.
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