Eve’s Pudding

I know, I know, I promise all this festive stuff, and then it’s all apples, apples, apples as far as you can see. But apples are in season, and it’s all good, so that’s not bad thing in the greater scheme of things, surely?

Eve’s Pudding is one of the first desserts I ever learned to make. I love it, but I don’t know if that is just nostalgia? Probably it isn’t, because people seem to like it when I serve it up. The name, predictably enough, comes from Eve as in Garden-of-Eden, linking back to her pinching forbidden fruit (which were not, as people often say, apples, but close enough). It dates back to the early 1800s, and is a simple dish of stewed apples, topped with a Victoria sponge mixture, so you end up with fluffy, soft apples with pillowly soft cake on top. Yummy!

This can be made either as one large dessert, or as individual puddings. I had been bemoaning the lack of ramekin dishes in my kitchen, so making this pudding was the perfect chance to go out and buy some. On the first attempt, I found some rather fetching ones in the sale section of Habitat on Regent’s Street in central London. You don’t see it here, but they have pixellated images of aubergines, beetroot and carrots at the bottom. I like that when you’ve scoffed dessert, there is a little picture to greet you, and these would say: eat more veg, you pudding monster!

Eve’s Pudding is, in my view, a really nice way to finish a meal. Because it is mostly apple (i.e. fruit), it is relatively light. If you keep any additional sugar to a minimum, you have a lovely combination of sharp fruit with soft, golden sponge. Aim to serve them warm, rather than piping hot, with a little cream or ice-cream. Or, if the urge takes you, drown it in cream or custard. I don’t judge.

It’s also great if you have people round for dinner – the apples can be partly stewed and the sponge mixture prepared ahead of time. As your guests are about to eat the main, you can slip out, put the apples into individual ramekins, top with the cake mix and bake. Your domestic god/goddess organisational credentials will be sure to impress.

To make Eve’s Pudding (serves 6):

• 8 apples, peeled and cored.
• 4-5 tablespoons sugar
• Squeeze lemon juice
• pinch of ground cinnamon
• 125g butter
• 100g caster sugar
• 2 eggs
• 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
• 100g self-raising flour
• 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
• 2-3 tablespoons milk

Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F).

Chop the apples into chunks. Put into a saucepan with a few spoons of sugar, the lemon juice and the 25g of the butter. Cook gently until the apples are starting to soften (they should not be mushy). Remove from the heat. Place int a deep oven dish or divide between six individual ramekins. Place to one side.

To make the topping, put the remaining 100g of butter plus the sugar, flour, baking powder, vanilla and eggs into a bowl, and mix until well-combined and creamy. Add as much milk as necessary to make a the batter light, smooth and soft – it should drop gently off the back of a spoon, but should not be runny.

Pour the batter over the apples, and spread it out until roughly even. Don’t obsess about this, as part of the charm (particularly with the ramekins) is that you get gaps where the apple peeks out. Put in the oven and bake until the topping is just golden and the sponge topping is springy (10-15 minutes for ramekins, 25-30 minutes for a single dish).

Remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly. Serve warm with cream, creme fraiche, yoghurt or ice-cream.

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10 Comments

Filed under Recipe, Sweet Things, Uncategorized

10 responses to “Eve’s Pudding

  1. Tes

    I just love that it is call Eve’s pudding! It’s so cute and sounds delicious!

    • Thanks Tes. I think the little ramekins are a nice way to serve this, and it stops us from eating too much in one go. Be sure to use tart apples, or a little more lemon juice, to keep the contrast with the sweet cake topping.

  2. hi! I’m a blogger too and have just made my own quince jam but was checking other recipes and found yours! And funnily enough, I was thinking about making Eve’s Pudding next as well! I’m English but living in Turkey!

    I enjoyed reading your blog.

    Claudia

    • Hi Claudia,

      Thank you for stopping by. It is funny, quince jam has become one of my most popular posts in the last month or so, all down to the fruit now being in season. I also made a quince jelly recently (here) which was a lot more work, but the result was spectacular – a brilliant deep orange colour with a delicate aroma and fabulous flavour.

      Your blog is great – I like the seasonality of your cooking. I know a lot of people get worried about food miles and carbon footprint, but even more simply, keeping things seasonal means you get to enjoy produce at its best. More than that, however, you also experience things for a brief period, before they vanish for the rest of the year, with something else taking their place in soup, salad or dessert. All that, and I am of course VERY jealous of the wonderful views you have from the coast – looks spectacular.

      I hope your Eve’s Pudding works out – how do you make yours? Any tips? I love to collect hints from people.

  3. Bella

    Hi, stumbled upon your blog, and post, whilst searching for a good recipe for Eve’s pudding. Going to give yours a shot but there are a few mistakes, or rather unclear points, in your recipe. Firstly, is the 25g of butter you use to cook the butter out of the 100g total? And how much vanilla do you use? Its called for in the recipe, but I can’t seem to see it in the ingredients. I’m sure I can guesstimate, but for others fixing these points may help. Thanks for the recipe!

    • Hi Bella, and “oops” – well spotted! I’ve made the changes to the recipe. On your points:

      * the 25g butter is in addition to the 100g you need to make the sponge – so 125g in total.
      * for vanilla, I use about 1/2 teaspoon, but it’s totally a matter of taste. If you’re not a vanilla fan, you can leave it out. I use vanilla extract, so not sure how much that would be if you use vanilla sugar – probably 1 sachet.

      Best of luck, and I hope that the (updated) recipe turns out well.

  4. Les

    Hi, just making your Eve’s pud, and noticed you have given 4 eggs in the recipe. For 110g of flour should it be 2 egg? Just wondering
    Thanks for the recipe
    Les

    • Oh, I am mortified! This was based on an adapted Victoria sponge recipe, so of course you’re entirely correct – it’s two eggs! I hope your recipe was not a disaster.

  5. I’m blessed! I stumbled on this recipe after all the various comments and amendments and made it successfully this evening for friends. It worked well. Next time perhaps I will add some blackberries. Eve’s pudding brought back memories of mothers and grandmothers who used to make this traditional English pudding.

    • Hi Jean – yes, it was a little bit embarrassing that I made a few “typos” but I’ve gotten better at proof reading my posts now :) I love the idea of adding the blackberries for a more autumnal dessert. A little dash of spice or some candied ginger would also be good. Glad this brings back some good memories – this is one I got from my mum.

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