“Laughter is the sun that drives winter from the human face.” - Victor Hugo
Our Winter seems to be dragging on this year, with quite a few rainy days, cold temperatures and wind now and then. The grey days give way to dark, cold nights and it seems the gardens in particular are having a hard time. Most tress are still bare and the blossom is in no hurry to arrive this year. A few magnolias that have started to bloom are rather reluctantly unfurling their buds and even the Spring bulbs are delayed. Wintertime calls for comfort food and what better than this traditional English dessert treat?
Lemon Steamed Pudding
1 tablespoon butter, at room-temperature, for greasing
4 and 1/2 tablespoons golden syrup
1/4 cup plus 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice (about 2 lemons),
plus 2 teaspoons lemon zest
1 cup sugar
3 large eggs, separated
1 cup milk
1/3 cup plain flour
Lightly sweetened whipped cream, for serving (optional)
Berries for serving (optional)
Position a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat the oven to 180˚C. Grease six 180 mL ramekins with the butter and place in a roasting pan.
Whisk together the golden syrup and 2 teaspoons of the lemon juice in a small bowl and then divide the mixture evenly among the ramekins.
Whisk together the lemon zest, sugar and egg yolks in a large bowl. Stir in the milk and flour, alternating 3 times, and then stir in the remaining 1/4 cup lemon juice (the batter will have a very liquid consistency).
Whisk the egg whites to soft peaks in a separate bowl, and then gently fold the egg whites into the batter using a rubber spatula. Pour the batter into the ramekins, filling them up to about 1 cm from the top.
Pour hot water into the roasting pan until about halfway up the sides of the ramekins and bake until the cakes have puffed and turned light brown on top, about 45 minutes.
Allow the ramekins to sit in the water for about 10 minutes before carefully removing them. Place a dessert plate on top of a ramekin and invert. If the cake does not naturally release, run a paring knife along the sides of the ramekin and try again. You should see a glossy lemon curd layer on top of the cake, with the treacle sauce running down the sides.
Repeat with the remaining ramekins. Serve warm with a dollop of whipped cream and some fresh berries on the side (if desired).
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