Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Lemon Pudding

It's been a while since I last posted, let alone posted a recipe. Two months? Bad blogger! For various reasons, although I've been cooking, I haven't been trying many new recipes. Not many new recipes means that there's not much to blog, at least from a foodie perspective. But there's one recipe that I've been meaning for weeks to share with you all, as it's one of my favorite things to eat in the cool winter months.

Lately I've developed a taste for warm, soft, rib-sticking fare. Not just developed a taste, but overcome my previous (rather strong) aversion to certain dishes. After a lifetime of turning up my nose at oatmeal, I've now eaten it for breakfast every morning for three weeks. I have rice pudding simmering away on the stove for the second time in a week. What brought about this change? I have no idea, but it's come in quite handy lately as we've received so much rain in the last several days that plans for an ark would not be out of place. I love rain like nothing else, so I've been far from gloomy, but the dark and drippy weather has heightened my appetite for the kind of soft, spoonable fare that takes an hour, maybe more, to prepare.

One such hearty dish of which I've not had to overcome a dislike is one that made many an appearance at my family's table during the winter when I was growing up. It combines some of what I think are the best things about winter: warm puddings and citrus. Meyer lemons are ripening in abundance these days, and what better way to enjoy the bounty of the season than with a dish of soft, lemony pudding--or, as it's known in my family, "lemon pudd."

But this isn't your ordinary pudding.

This dish is magical: a relatively homogeneous batter goes into the oven and emerges a cake with its own sauce, all in a single dish. One simple batter separates into lemon curd on the bottom and a soft, spongy cake on top. And it's delicious.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I have a date with a bowl of pudding and a hot bath.

Lemon Pudding

From: Nonnie
Yield: Makes 6-8 servings
A warming winter dessert with a sponge-like top and lemon curd underneath.

Ingredients

  1. 5 tablespoons flour
  2. 1 cup sugar
  3. 3 tablespoons butter, room temperature
  4. 1 cup milk (whole or skim, as you like)
  5. 3 eggs, separated
  6. 1/2 cup lemon juice
  7. zest of the lemons used for juice (about three small to medium lemons)
  8. pinch of salt

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350F and grease a deep casserole or souffle dish
  2. Sift flour and sugar into a large bowl. Add softened butter and cream together.
  3. In a medium bowl, combine milk, egg yolks, lemon juice and zest, and salt. Whisk together, then add to sugar mixture in large bowl and stir to combine. Set aside.
  4. Beat egg whites in medium bowl just until stiff peaks form. (Do not overbeat.) Gently fold 1/4 of beaten whites into rest of batter, then fold in remaining whites in two additions.
  5. Place casserole dish in a roasting pan about half filled with hot water. Pour batter into casserole and bake until top is golden and feels spongy, 45-50 minutes.

Notes

  1. The original recipe calls for only the zest of half of one lemon, but I think we can all agree that such a paltry amount would be inadequate.
  2. Can also be done as individual puddings: instead of a single casserole, butter 6-8 ramekins (depending on their size) and set in a dish (or two dishes) large enough to accommodate them without crowding.


9 comments:

katie schoe said...

It is good. Really good.

Anonymous said...

Last of the Meyers - it was good.

Very good.

Vanessa said...

hello :D

Anne said...

Glad you enjoyed it, Sir Anon!

Hi, Vanessa.

Bee said...

Is this English in origin?

This is just the sort of thing that I love. I don't have any Meyer lemons, but that won't stop me from trying this out tomorrow. I think lemon is vitally needed in this house . . . as we have lurched from virus to cold for the past two months.

Anne said...

It might be, Bee, I'm not sure. Nigel Slater has a similar recipe in his book Appetite. This particular recipe comes from my mom's mom's family, who most recently are from the American South but originated somewhere in the north of England.

I'm sure it will be delicious with whatever citrus you have on hand: lemons, oranges, etc. I saw blood oranges at the grocery store yesterday and am considering trying a blood orange pudding. Pink pudding? Red pudding? Who knows, but it might warrant some pictures.

Supersaps said...

I was just told I have to bring dessert to a dinner tonight, and I was panicking (b/c of timing), until I realized that I have all the ingredients for this super simple recipe! Will let you know how it goes. As usual, thanks. :)

Supersaps said...

I made this on Friday night --how easy to make! And great!

I didn't have a deep casserole dish, so I used a more shallow one. The pudding only needed 40 minutes to bake as a result (I think a deeper dish would be better to obtain 2 thicker layers of spongy-cake bit and the curd). Anyway, if anyone decides to go the individual servings route, be careful to put them in for much less time!

Thanks for the recipe, Annie.

Anne said...

Glad you liked it! And yes, the individual puddings don't need as much time. Interesting that the shallower dish needed less time, but I suppose not all that surprising.