Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Steamed sponge pudding : with cranberries and orange

A true winter favourite!   The work of seconds to prepare, yet always gives the impression of having been a labour of love. 

A really adaptable little dish, you can add whatever you like to provide the sauce.  My personal favourite is golden syrup, hubby’s is raspberry jam.  In honesty though you could use any jam you like; cherry is very nice.  I’ve made it with lemon and orange curd too.

The size of the pudding you make can be quite simply adjusted if you think in terms of a sponge cake.  For two of us I simply make up a one egg sponge mix (2oz each of butter, sugar and flour). 

This particular little beauty is a cranberry and orange sponge pudding and I did as follows : 

Very generously grease a small pudding basin, this one is a pint and a half capacity.

Add about 150g of cranberries to a pan with 1tb of sugar, the grated zest and juice of a small orange and simmer quietly until the berries begin to pop.

Beat the butter and sugar together until light and creamy and then add the egg, then the flour.

Add the berries to the buttered dish and then the sponge mixture, levelling across the dish to cover the berries.

Cover the dish with a sheet of pleated greaseproof paper and then a sheet of pleated tin foil.  Then tie the cover to the basin securely with string, looping it around the top to make a handle.  This is much easier to accomplish if you place the basin on a wet dish-cloth to stop it slipping and sliding!

Place the dish in the steamer, cover and steam for an hour.  If you are making a bigger sponge mixture, then it will need longer steaming.

When the pudding has had its steaming carefully remove the string and the foil, protecting your hands with a cloth.  Test it with a skewer to ensure that it is cooked through.

Run a knife around the inside of the bowl and then place a plate over.  Carefully invert the dish on the plate and give it a shake to release the sponge.

What you should have, depending on the filling you are using, is a cooked sponge with a lake of sauce pouring down it.

As this was berries rather than jam, there wasn’t so much of a lake!  

Delicious served with custard, pouring cream or ice cream.

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