Hungry days are the most nostalgic. Perhaps my stomach connects to my heart via memory, but it always seems to be the food of memory that tastes the best. Strawberries don’t taste as sweet as those I pilfered in my father’s garden when I was little. They don’t grow tomatoes that taste they way they once did.
And so it goes.
Thank goodness they haven’t messed around too much with the taste of Golden Syrup.
On a cold day when my stomach protested that I needed more padding than a dish of steamed vegetables could normally provide, it was to desserts I went looking. But now that I live alone I couldn’t be bothered with long waiting times. I wanted something in minutes. Comforting oneself is like that. There’s no use waiting for comfort. It’s an immediate need.
I went looking through the archives for a golden syrup pudding and was shocked when I couldn’t find one. I thought I had recorded every family favourite on this blog eons ago. So anyway, I rectified the situation, fast.
You could steam this pudding the old-fashioned way, in a large covered boiler, for about 2 hours. Or you can do it as our grandmothers did and nuke that sucker into fluffy obeisance in under 10 minutes. Because there’s no point being nostalgic for the old ways if you have to wait decades to see results. Am I right?
- 4 tbsp golden syrup (or use red jam if you want a change)
- 100g butter, cut into small cubes
- 100g self-raising flour
- 2 tsp ground ginger (optional)
- 100g (½ cup) sugar
- 2 eggs
- 2 tbsp milk
Spoon the golden syrup into the base of a 1.5 litre pudding basin, or use a large noodle bowl or pyrex bowl instead. Just don’t use a plastic bowl no matter how microwaveable it might be. Tilt the bowl to encourage the syrup up the sides of the bowl, or use the back of a spoon if you can’t be bothered going in slow motion.
Place the remaining ingredients into the bowl of a food processor. Process it for 1 minute until the butter is completely incorporated and the batter is smooth.
If you don’t have a food processor: rub the butter into the flour as if you are making pastry until the mixture is the consistency of breadcrumbs. Add the remaining ingredients and use a whisk to combine it all.
Spoon the batter into the bowl and cover it loosely with clingwrap. Cook in microwave on MED-HIGH (70% power) for 5 minutes. Leave, undisturbed, for another 3 minutes while the residual heat finishes off the cake. Turn out the pudding onto a platter and serve with cream, thin custard or ice cream.
This really is best eaten at the time you make it, and tends to dry out quickly, even if you store it in an airtight container. Re-heating slices for about 30 seconds on HIGH should help bring it back.
If you want to cook it on a stove top: Cover the bowl in a layer of foil and tie it around the top of the basin with kitchen string or a very large elastic band. Place an upturned old saucer or small plate in the bottom of a large stock pot. Place the pudding basin on top and pour enough boiling water to come half way up the sides of the basin. Simmer for 2 hours making sure the water doesn’t dry out. Leave it to cool for a few minutes before turning it out and serving. Hot syrup or jam can blister your mouth if you eat it too soon.
$3.50 for four generous serves