How to make a man happy – Eve’s pudding

Eve's pudding with apples

As much as I love both my father and my husband their characters are poles apart. My dad is very practical and likes home improvements, electrical gadgets and precise detail. He reads the latest thrillers by Dan Brown and John Grisham and enjoys mowing the lawn and visiting the tip. My husband, on the other hand, loves factual history books, literature, antiques and art pottery. He detests modern technology and DIY makes him very, very cross.

There is however one thing that they have in common and that’s their love of Eve’s pudding. Both would name it as their favourite dessert and it’s a sure fire way to make them both very, very happy. There’s really not much to love about this traditional English pudding. Delicious, slightly tart apples with a lovely gooey sponge topping. Apparently the name refers to Eve in the bible and the apples are those from the tree of knowledge.

I’ve tried making this with other stewed fruit at the bottom such as rhubarb and gooseberry but it just isn’t the same.

Eve’s pudding

Serves 4-6

For the stewed apple bottom

  • 2 large cooking apples, I use Bramleys, about 500g in total
  • A good knob of butter
  • 2 tablespoons of caster sugar (although amount of sugar will depend on the tartness of your apples/how sweet you like your puddings)

For the topping

  • 75g butter
  • 100g caster sugar
  • 100g self-raising flour
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon of warm water

Preheat the oven to 160oC fan.

Peel, core and chop the apples into chunks about half an inch square.

Add the apples to a saucepan along with the butter and sugar and cook on a medium heat with a lid on until the apples are soft. I like there to be a mixture of mush and apples still intact. Test the mixture for sweetness and add more sugar if necessary remembering that the topping is very sweet and this will counter balance some of the tartness in the apples.

Transfer to a lightly buttered ceramic baking dish (about 1 1/2 pints). You can also divide the mixture up into ramekins for individual portions (this recipe makes 6).

For the topping, put the butter, self-raising flour, sugar and eggs into a large mixing bowl and mix with an electric hand whisk until incorporated, be careful not to over mix. Add a spoonful of warm water to the mix and give it another quick whisk.

Spoon the mixture over the apples and cook in the oven.

How long you cook the Eve’s pudding is a matter of taste. If you’re doing it by the book then 30-35 minutes is the suggested time. You then serve with cream or custard.

In our family though, we like the sponge to still be runny in the middle. This also makes a sort of custard/sauce so you don’t need any accompaniment. If you think you would like this (think the deliciousness of uncooked cake mix) then 25 minutes should do it (or 15-20 minutes for ramekins).

Just out of the oven.

Just out of the oven.

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