Wednesday, 14 September 2011

Marmalade Pudding with Vanilla Custard

Marmalade steamed pudding

I have recently started an evening patisserie class on a Monday night. The first recipe was for Hot Marmalade Pudding with custard- an easy one to get us started. At first I was sceptical about the idea of a marmalade pudding, not being the biggest fan of the stuff myself (although I couldn't resist making a batch of Seville Orange Marmalade back in January). However, with one mouthful I was converted and awakened to the delights of the orange stuff. It's sticky, warming, rich and light at the same time with a lovely orangy tang coming through from the marmalade. I was initially pleased by the amount of marmalade in the ingredients as it would help to finally diminish the homemade stash in the cupboard- now I wish I had more to make it again... shop bought will have to do. I would happily substitute a christmas pudding for this- especially if laced with a bit of booze. 

Enough brown bread to make 150g of breadcrumbs
120g dark, soft brown sugar
25g self raising flour
120g butter plus a little more for greasing
2 eggs
about 8 tablespoons of coarse cut marmalade
1 heaped tsp bicarbonate of soda

- butter a 3 pint (preferably plastic) pudding basin well 
- remove most of the crusts from the bread and whizz in a food processor until you have fine crumbs. Place in a large bowl.
- melt the butter over a gentle heat. Once melted, add the marmalade and stir until incorporated. Cool slightly.
- add the melted ingredients to the breadcrumbs and mix, then mix in the sugar.
- Beat the eggs, then add to the marmalady bread. 
- finally, sift the flour and bicarbonate of soda in to the wet mixture and stir together well. 
- Pour this in to the basin- there should be a few inches of space left to the rim.

-Scrunch up a square of greaseproof paper, flatten and butter one side. Make a pleat in the centre and secure on to the top of the basin with a long piece of string, tied around the rim. Make a pleat in a large piece of foil and scrunch around.
- Place the basin in a large pan of boiling water, so it reaches half way up the side. Simmer for 2 hours with a lid on, topping up the water as necessary.



275ml milk
275ml double cream
6 egg yolks
100g caster sugar
vanilla pod/ a few drops of vanilla extract

-warm the milk and cream together until frothy. Add about half the sugar and stir gently. Set aside to cool.
- whisk the yolks with the remaining sugar until pale and increased n size.
- pour 1/3 of the cooled milk mixture in to the eggs and whisk (this gets the eggs used to the heat). Then add this back into the rest of the milk mixture. Return to a very gentle heat. Add the pod (slit open, seeds scraped out etc) or the extract at this stage.
-using a wooden spoon, stir the custard in a side to side fashion, ensuring no bits get the chance to burn.
- it should take a while- don't be tempted to turn the heat up. The custard is ready when it coats the back of a spoon and a channel is left when a finger draws a line through it.
- Pour (do not scrape the bottom out) the custard in to a clean, cool bowl and whisk until cool. 

The custard turned out pretty well even though I let the milk and cream boil over, and the fact that mine took the longest to make (I was quite sure I was going to end up with sweetened vanilla milk). Persistence is key! Delicious with the pudding and a drop of rum.

NOTE! I had another go at making some custard- of course, this time I heated the egg + dairy mixture too quickly, scrambling the eggs. To prevent complete disaster, I quickly poured it in to a cold bowl and whisked it to within an inch of it's life! And, voila! custard back from the depths of despair- it's just a bit thinner.

Although this was made in a cookery class, I believe it has been adapted from a Nick Nairn recipe.

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