FOOD & DRINK / A-Z of treats: Upside-down pudding

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The Independent Culture

is for pside-Down Pear Pudding, continuing our alphabet of sweet treats, a pleasant adornment to the Victorian table.



Serves 6

3 pears, peeled and halved

6 glace cherries

3 tablespoons demerara sugar

125g/4oz black treacle

125g/4oz golden syrup

125g/4oz lard

1 egg, beaten

150ml/ 1/4 pint warm milk

225g/8oz plain flour

1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon ground ginger

85g/3oz soft brown sugar

Take a deep 8in cake tin, line the base and side with greaseproof paper, and brush with melted butter. Sprinkle with demerara sugar. With a teaspoon, remove the core of each half pear and replace it with a glace cherry. Place pears, cherry downwards, on the base of the tin, radiating outwards from centre.

In a saucepan, melt the treacle, syrup and lard. Separately, mix the beaten egg with the milk and bicarbonate of soda. In a mixing bowl combine the flour, spices and soft brown sugar, and thoroughly blend with the treacle mixture and then the egg mixture. Carefully pour over the pears in the cake tin.

Preheat oven to 350F/180C/Gas 4. Bake for 45 minutes or until well risen and firm. Leave for 10 minutes before inverting on to a plate, and peeling away the greaseproof paper. Serve hot with double cream or custard.