Okay. I’m sorry for the awful pun. Although, I know that once you taste this scrumptious little mound of deliciousness you’ll forgive me in an instant. I’ve been holding on to this little gem for a while now, not because I didn’t want to share, but because it somehow, as things occasionally do in the manic digital mayhem that can be our lives, got lost in the ether, so to speak. Having finally surfaced from wherever it is that pear puddings go to holiday, I’m finally getting around to sharing it. This pudding seemed to be thwarted at so many points in it’s short life at it’s time in the lime light. Having been originally made to appear as a piece de resistance at the end of one of more decadent dinners the ever fabulous Mr P and I hosted, it was politely refused it’s place of glory when a second dessert appeared, as if by magic, in the hands of one of our guests. Not having been the first time a guest has brought a dessert to the table (and let me tell you, what a dessert it was! A pear pudding knows when to gracefully bow out to superior forces) I was well versed at organising a suitable Sunday Tea for the consumption of said pudding. However, a pear pudding’s prime not being as long as Madonna’s, a new set of Tea Guests were sadly disappointed with a somewhat dry, if tasty, bit of pud. Not to be out done, Pear Pudding was dutifully recreated to it’s original glory and enjoyed by all. I love a happy ending, don’t you?
Having the visual idea in my head of what I wanted my pear pudding to look like, but no recipe to follow or adapt, I did the next best thing and combined a couple of different recipe’s. I used the basics from a Women’s Weekly Pear Tart Tatin (from their New French Food cookbook) to caramelise the pears and a basic pudding recipe for the rest (thanks grandma). Best served with clotted cream.
Caramelised Pear Pudding
for the caramel pears
3 large Bosc pears, peeled, halved and cored
½ cup firmly packed brown sugar
½ cup cream
for the pudding batter
½ cup butter, softened
⅓ cup firmly packed brown sugar
1 cup flour
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp cinnamon
– slice the pears length ways into 1cm (½”) wide slices, keeping their peary shape. Keep the middle, pear shaped slices whole and chop the remaining bits into cubes. You need about 10 of the pear shaped slices for the sides of the pudding basin.
– heat the butter, sugar and cream slowly in a large, heavy based saucepan, stirring until the sugar is dissolved. Add the pear slices and chopped bits to the caramel and bring to the boil.
– simmer over a low heat, turning the pears every so often, for about 25 minutes, until the pears are tender. Remove from heat, drain pears from caramel, reserving sauce.
– preheat the oven to 350˚F and grease a 500ml pudding basin
– for the batter, beat the butter and sugar until creamy.
– beat in the eggs, one at a time.
– sift together the flour, baking powder and cinnamon. Add to the egg mixture and mix until just incorporated.
– stir in small, chopped pear pieces
– line your greased pudding bowl with the pear shaped slices, alternating head to toe. Us two slices to line the bottom of the basin. (chop up any remaining pieces and add to pudding batter.)
– coat the pears in half the reserved caramel.
– fill the basin with pudding mixture and top with the rest of the caramel sauce.
– bake in the middle of the oven for 25 to 35 minutes (checking often after 25 mins) until set in the middle.