Food - Desserts and Pudding Recipes

Dessert and Pudding recipes for Africa

Three Christmas Pudding recipes

Three Christmas Puddings

Three Christmas pudding recipes to ensure that your festive season meal ends up better than ever before.

Christmas Plum Pudding with Brandied Cider Sauce

Although often confused with fruitcake, this classic Christmas dessert tastes more like a rich, dense spice cake. This version uses butter instead of the traditional suet and can be made with your choice of sugared fruit, currants, or raisins.

Serves 8.
Preparation time: 25 minutes.
Cooking time: 2 hours.
Standing time: 10 minutes.

Ingredients
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon grated orange rind
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1/4 cup butter or margarine (at room temperature)
4 large egg whites
1/2 cup apple cider or apple juice
3/4 cup raisins
1/2 cup shredded carrot
1/3 cup candied cherries, halved, or currants or raisins
1/3 cup chopped candied pineapple, currants, or raisins
1/3 cup pecan halves
Brandied Cider Sauce

Step 1:
Lightly grease a 1 1/2 quart steamed pudding mold or casserole. In a medium-size bowl, stir together the flour, orange rind, cinnamon, baking powder, ginger, and cloves.

Step 2:
In a large bowl, with an electric mixer on medium, cream the brown sugar and butter until light and fluffy, scraping side of bowl often. Add the egg whites and beat well. Using a wooden spoon, stir in one-third of the flour mixture, then half of the apple cider. Repeat, then stir in the remaining flour mixture. Stir in the raisins, carrot, cherries, pineapple, and pecans.

Step 3:
Spoon the batter evenly into the prepared mold. Cover mold with foil; tie foil in place with string.

Step 4:
Place mold on rack in a Dutch oven. Pour boiling water into the Dutch oven until the water is halfway up the side of the mold. Cook, covered, over low heat for 2 to 2 1/2 hours or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Step 5:
Place mold upright on a wire rack and let stand for 10 minutes. Using a narrow metal spatula, loosen side of plum pudding from the mold, then invert the pudding onto a serving plate. Serve warm with Brandied Cider Sauce; top with vanilla ice cream if you like. (Or, cover and refrigerate the pudding--it will keep for 1 week. To reheat the pudding, steam as directed in step 4 for 1 hour or until heated through.)

Brandied Cider Sauce:
In a small saucepan, whisk together 3/4 cup apple cider or apple juice, 1/4 cup firmly packed light brown sugar, and 1 tablespoon cornstarch. Bring to a boil over moderate heat, whisking constantly. Cook for 2 minutes or until the mixture is thickened, whisking constantly. Stir in 2 tablespoons brandy or apple juice and 1 teaspoon butter or margarine. Makes about 3/4 cup.

Nutritional Information
1 Serving:
Calories 347
Total Fat 10g
Saturated Fat 4g
Protein 5g
Carbohydrate 61g
Fiber 2g
Sodium 148mg
Cholesterol 17mg

Whisky Cakes

Our Grandmas used the finest whiskeys to make this old-fashioned cake, which was often served during the holidays. The perfect whisky cake is moist and dense with lots of nuts and sometimes raisins, too.

Makes 20 servings.
Preparation time: 25 minutes.
Cooking time: 55 minutes.
Standing time: 30 minutes.

Ingredients
2 cups raisins
2 cups chopped walnuts
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons ground cardamom or ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 2/3 cups firmly packed light brown sugar
3/4 cup butter or margarine, at room temperature
4 large egg whites
1 large egg
1/2 cup bourbon, Scotch whisky, or apple cider

Step 1:
Lightly grease a 9 x 9 x 2-inch baking pan. To keep cake from overbrowning, line pan with parchment paper; lightly grease paper. In a medium-size bowl, pour enough boiling water over the raisins to cover. Let stand for 30 minutes or until water cools to room temperature; drain well. In a medium-size bowl, toss drained raisins and walnuts with 1/2 cup of the flour.

Step 2:
Preheat the oven to 325°. In another medium-size bowl, stir together the remaining 2 cups flour, the cardamom, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. In a large bowl, with an electric mixer on medium, cream the brown sugar and butter until light and fluffy, scraping side of bowl often. Add the egg whites and beat well. Add the egg and beat well. Using a wooden spoon, stir in one-third of the flour mixture, then half of the bourbon. Repeat, then stir in the remaining flour mixture. Fold in the raisin mixture.

Step 3:
Spread batter evenly into prepared pan; smooth the surface. Bake about 55 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Place the pan upright on a wire rack for 20 minutes. Using a narrow metal spatula, loosen sides of cake from the pan, then invert the cake onto the rack. Cool completely. Remove the paper.

Nutritional Information
1 serving:
Calories 311
Total Fat 15g
Saturated Fat 5g
Protein 5g
Carbohydrate 39g
Fiber 2g
Sodium 160mg
Cholesterol 29mg

Divine Divinities

Divine Divinities simply melts in your mouth! "We ask for it every year, we place our order on the 15th and on Christmas Eve, it's ready and waiting for us to dig in."

Makes about 36 servings.
Preparation time: 20 minutes.
Cooking time: 25 minutes.

Ingredients
2 1/2 cups sugar
2/3 cup light corn syrup
1/2 cup water
2 large egg whites
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
2/3 cup coarsely chopped pecans or walnuts or chopped red or green sugared cherries (optional)

Step 1:
Line a baking sheet with waxed paper. In a large heavy saucepan, combine the sugar, corn syrup, and water. Bring to a boil over moderately high heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon to dissolve sugar. (Avoid splashing mixture onto side of the pan.) Boil for 3 minutes. If using a candy thermometer, carefully clip to side of pan, making sure the bulb is immersed but not touching the bottom of the pan.

Step 2:
Cook over moderate heat, without stirring, to 260° on candy thermometer, hard-ball stage (15 to 18 minutes). (Or, use this cold water test. Using a spoon, drop a small amount of hot mixture into very cold, not icy, water. Dip your fingers into the water and form the mixture into a ball. Remove the ball from the water; it should not flatten but can be deformed by pressure.)

Step 3:
Remove pan from heat; remove the thermometer from saucepan. In a large bowl, with very clean beaters and an electric mixer on medium to high, beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form. Slowly pour hot syrup mixture in a fine stream over egg whites, beating with electric mixer on high for 3 minutes and scraping the side of the bowl occasionally.

Step 4:
Add the vanilla. Continue beating with the electric mixer on high just until candy starts to lose its gloss and holds soft peaks (5 to 6 minutes), scraping the side of the bowl occasionally. Stir in nuts (if using).

Step 5:
Working quickly, drop by teaspoonfuls onto waxed paper. If the divinity becomes too stiff, beat in very hot water, a few drops at a time, until it is a softer consistency. Cool completely. To store, cover tightly.

Tips:
Choose a dry day. Because sugar absorbs moisture from the air, divinity may never set up if you try to make it on a humid day.

Start with room temperature egg whites. They heat up to a greater volume than cold egg whites.

Use a heavy-duty, freestanding electric mixer. Beating divinity puts a strain on a mixer's motor. Portable mixers and lightweight, freestanding mixers may not have heavy enough motors.

Follow the recipe directions carefully. Timing is important. Adding the hot syrup too quickly or not beating the candy mixture long enough can cause divinity to fail. Overbeating the divinity will cause it to set up before you can drop it into individual pieces.

Nutritional Information
1 serving:
Calories 72
Total Fat 0g
Saturated Fat 0g
Protein 0g
Carbohydrate 19g
Fiber 0g
Sodium 11mg
Cholesterol 0mg

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