Ginger and pears are a beautiful combination . . . the pears sweet and lucious, the ginger fiery and hot . . .
I found this scrummy old fashioned pudding recipe in one of my cookbooks the other day, Good Old Fashioned Puddings, by Sarah Paston Williams and published by the National Trust.
It is chock filled with beautiful old fashioned recipes for delicious desserts and teatime treats, guaranteed to please most people! This tasty gingerbread like pudding recipe called out to me from the start!
I am an old fashioned gal with an old fashioned husband, so you just know that this tasty delight went down a real treat with us.
So perfectly autumnal . . . with fresh pears and warm spices . . . toasty walnuts, cherries and sweet sugar and treacle . . . both kinds golden and dark . . . the end result more like a cake than a pudding, with a rich toffee topping pooled around the fruit and nuts . . . the cake all rich and gingerbready beneath that fruity decadence.
Lashings of custard or cream are a must! We chose to have extra thick double spooning cream with ours.
Oh my . . . but it was some good . . . three hours later, and I am finding the leftover's hard to resist . . . I keep going into the kitchen and cutting off tiny slivers . . .
Oh I am a glutton . . .
*Gingerbread and Pear Upside-down Pudding*
I am told this was very popular in Victorian days. I don't know about that, but I can tell you that it's very, very good!
1 3/4 ounces of butter (scant 1/4 cup)
70g of soft light brown sugar (about 1/3 cup packed)
3 firm pears
6 glace cherries
For the cake:
4 ounces butter (1/2 cup)
70g of slft light brown sugar (about 1/3 cup packed)
4 ounces black treacle (1/2 cup)
4 ounces golden syrup (1/2 cup)
(You can use 1 cup of mild molasses)
225g of plain flour (a generous 2 cups)
1/4 tsp salt
pinch of ground cloves
2 tsp ground cinnamon
2 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
1 level teaspoon of baking soda
150ml of warm full fat milk (scant 2/3 cup)
2 large free range eggs
Preheat the oven to 180*C/350*F/ gas mark 4. Butter a 9 inch round deep baking tin. Line the bottom and sides with greaseproof paper. Melt the butter for the topping in a saucepan along with the brown sugar and stir for a few minutes to dissolve. Pour into the bottom of the tin. Peel, halve and core the pears. Put a glace cherry in the middle of each and then place cut side down into the brown sugar mixture in the baking pan, with stalk ends facing the centre. Place walnut halves in between the pears.
Put the butter for the cake bit in a larger saucepan. Melt together with the brown sugar, treacle and syrup. Whisk in the salt, cloves, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and soda. Whisk in the eggs and milk and then the flour until you get a smooth batter. Pour this batter carefully over top of the pears in the tin. Bake for 40 to 50 minutes, until well risen and firm to the touch and a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean.
Remove from the oven and allow to shrink a little before turning out onto a warm serving plate. Carefully remove the paper. Serve warm with custard, or cream.