Ginger chocolate steamed pudding with nutmeg chocolate sauce
Decorated with pretty redcurrants and drizzled with a white chocolate and nutmeg sauce this spiced pudding is both special and comforting.
Equipment and preparation: You will need a 1.2 litre/2 pint pudding bowl, baking paper, kitchen foil and kitchen string.
- 175g/6oz butter, softened, plus extra for greasing
- 1 tsp cocoa powder, for dusting
- 100g/3½oz soft brown sugar
- 60g/2¼oz caster sugar
- 3 free-range eggs
- ½ tsp vanilla bean paste
- 160g/5¾oz self-raising flour, sifted
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp ground ginger
- ½ tsp freshly ground nutmeg
- 4 tbsp chocolate drops
- 4 tbsp finely chopped crystallised ginger
- 6 tbsp milk (you may need a little more)
For the chocolate sauce
Grease a 1.2 litre/2 pint pudding bowl with melted butter and dust with cocoa. Line the base with a circle of baking paper.
Cut a sheet of baking paper large enough to generously cover the top of the pudding bowl. Cut a sheet of kitchen foil to the same size and lay it on top of the baking paper. Create a single pleat in the middle. Ensure you have kitchen string to hand and that the pudding bowl fits snugly into a lidded saucepan.
Cream the butter, brown sugar and caster sugar together in a bowl until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating between each addition. Stir in the vanilla paste.
Carefully fold in the flour, baking powder, ground ginger, nutmeg, chocolate drops and crystallised ginger into the egg mixture. Add enough milk to form a soft batter and spoon the mixture into the pudding bowl.
Add boiling water to a saucepan to what will be a third of the way up the side of the pudding bowl once the bowl is placed in the saucepan, but do not add the bowl to the pan yet.
Place the foil and baking paper sheet on top of the pudding bowl (with the baking paper nearest the batter). Secure with kitchen string and make a handle with the string (to lift the pudding out of the hot water once cooked). Trim off any excess paper and foil.
Bring the water to a simmer over a medium heat. Scrunch up some baking parchment or kitchen foil and carefully lower it into the water. Place the pudding bowl on top of the parchment or foil. This is to stop the pudding bowl being in contact with the base of the pan, which could cause it to burn. You could also use a heatproof plate or shallow bowl.
Cover the pan with a lid and steam for 1½ hours, ensuring that the water is gently simmering and topped up if needed.
Remove the pudding from the saucepan using the string 'handle'. To check if the pudding is cooked, press the top for sponginess or insert a skewer and if it comes out clear it is ready. Leave to cool slightly before inverting the bowl to let the pudding slip out – a gentle tap to the top of the pudding bowl will help.
To make the chocolate sauce, combine the chocolate, cream and nutmeg in a medium saucepan over a low heat and stir well until it is melted and combined.
Place the pudding onto a cake stand or serving plate and drizzle the sauce over the top. Arrange the redcurrants and mint springs on top of the pudding, dust with icing sugar and serve in slices.
For an extra zing, add the zest of half a pink grapefruit to the batter.