If you want to make these puddings in advance, they freeze beautifully, and after defrosting should be re-heated as below.
Equipment and preparation: You will also need eight 175ml/6fl oz pudding basins, well buttered, and a solid baking sheet.
110g/4oz stem ginger in syrup (8 pieces)
1 heaped tsp freshly grated ginger
175g/6 oz self-raising flour
¼ level tsp ground ginger
one third level tsp ground cinnamon
one third level tsp ground cloves
½ level tsp baking powder
¾ level tsp bicarbonate of soda
75g/3oz soft butter
110g/4oz dark brown sugar
1 tbsp black treacle
175g/6oz Bramley apples, peeled, cored and chopped small
Pre-heat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas 4.
First of all, place the pieces of stem ginger in a food processor and turn the motor on for about 7-10 seconds. Be careful not to process for too long - the ginger should be chopped small, but not puréed! After that, sift the flour, spices, baking powder and bicarbonate of soda into a mixing bowl. Then add the eggs, butter and sugar. The way to deal with the treacle is to grease the spoon first and, using a spatula or another spoon, push it into the bowl to join the rest of the ingredients. Now add the freshly grated ginger, then, using an electric hand whisk, whisk everything together gradually, adding 175ml/6fl oz warm water until you have a smooth mixture. Finally, fold in the apple and stem ginger.
Now divide the mixture between the buttered pudding basins, stand them on a baking sheet and bake in the centre of the oven for 35 minutes, or until they feel firm and springy to the touch. After that, remove them from the oven and let them stand for about 5 minutes, then run a small palette knife around the edges of the tins and turn them out. Allow the puddings to get completely cold and keep them wrapped in clingfilm until you need them.
To make the sauce, all you do is gently melt together the sugar and butter until all the granules of sugar have completely dissolved, then whisk in the ginger wine and brandy, add the chopped ginger and the sauce is then ready to serve.
To serve the puddings, preheat the grill to its highest setting and arrange the puddings on a heatproof dish or tray. Spoon the sauce over, making sure that no little bits of ginger are actually on the top of the puddings, then place the whole thing under the grill, so that the tops of the puddings are about 13cm/5in from the source of heat. Now allow them to heat through - which will take about 8 minutes - by which time the tops will be slightly crunchy and the sauce will be hot and bubbly. Serve with chilled pouring cream.
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