Posts Tagged: winter


24
Nov 10

The proof is in the pudding

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I’m a big fan of rice pudding – it’s a humble, quiet pudding that probably haunts most from school days but that can be elevated to dinner party level with a few simple steps.

That’s not to say it isn’t still a worthy contender for post-Sunday lunch pud, but that with a few little touches here and there can suddenly become quite the designer dish.

Small confession and a break from the tradition of baking the pudding – I make mine stove top. It’s smooth, silky and somehow prettier without (for me) the dreaded skin, which I know is a favourite of some!

Caramelising the sugar adds a depth and richness to the finished pudding that mean really only a few spoonfuls is enough to fill you up, but you could omit this stage and add the seeds from a vanilla pod if you wanted or indeed a cracked cardamom pod for a bit of mellow spice.

A rice pud recipe for you then. I am a big caramel nut and try and find ways to stick it in all my puddings, give or take. There are few it doesn’t perk up. The prunes are optional but delicious.

Click here for my recipe for caramel rice pudding


23
Mar 10

Work some marmalade magic with a rib-sticking steamed pud

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Serving a steamed pudding is a brilliant way to end a meal. Not only are they utterly delicious, particularly with lashings of double cream, ice cream or creme fraiche but they are a doddle to prepare and also completely forgiving in terms of cooking time.

They will happily sit on a very, very low heat for quite literally hours – as long as we watch over them occasionally to make sure they don’t boil dry – which I must confess to doing once and redecorated the kitchen in a rather odd shade of sponge!

Marmalade makes a wonderful addition to a dark, moist sponge. In my case I’d always go for a dark, bitter one like a Seville – but then I’m rather spoilt as my mum makes an incredible one!

You could use anything you like here though – raspberry or blackcurrant jam, golden or maple syrup, even a little black treacle – I’d even go as far as Nutella and peanut butter – but that might be a little OTT. Although with a great big dollop of vanilla ice cream I can see the appeal.

The original pud recipe contains elements of Delia – I tend to up the butter content when I’m making something like this as it should be rich, moist and luxurious. After all, what are puds for?

Click here for my recipe for marmalade steamed pudding


5
Jan 10

Last of the leftovers

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Happy new year to you all! By now I imagine you have just about managed to clear out the fridges, polish off the last of the port and pry the remaining relatives off the sofa, away from the television and out of the door.

I always find there are a few little bits that hang around though – chocolates, nuts and quite often a few too many mince pies (if that’s even possible, I’ve been known to make a batch in the middle of summer!).

This recipe is a delicious and enjoyable way to use up the last of the pies and a good excuse to make some more if you’ve run out. A chef’s suggestion – get one of the kids to do the stirring, as there’s quite a lot of it.

Click here to read the recipe for Mince pie and Armagnac ice cream

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