Apples! So numerous apples … What to do with them all? What up coming can a canny cook do with an overpowering harvest of as numerous types of this fruit as there are now leaves falling from the trees?
Apple tarts and apple pies – apple strudel, as well, for positive. But there are also suet puddings – a pretty very good just one being a brigade pudding, which is stuffed with apples, sweetened with spices and muscovado sugar, and attended to with considerably custard.
The brigade pudding has its origins in feeding the troops when it was ultimately recognised (as it appeared to have taken a although for the penny to drop) that an military marches on its stomach. And if the victuals were not up to snuff, then moods grumbled louder than hungry tummies.
But enable us leave these that stick to the drum to their organization and switch as a substitute to matters extra domestic. There is a pleasing prospect to currently being cosy in the kitchen whilst an autumn wind lifts the myriad leaves outside the house, every single shade of fading inexperienced and pink swirling in the cooling briskness of shortening times.
Lining the stomach versus the chilly is the oldest prescription there is. Likely to a faculty in a that sat on an estuary that flowed into the North Sea meant dealing with easterly gales that froze the blood through the bitter winters – but it also finely honed an all-also-healthier urge for food for a steadying pudding.
Now, my grandmother fed me lunch all by way of senior university in Dundee. It did a lot to my waistline and minimal for my afternoon attention span immediately after returning from lunch at Granny’s really properly fed without a doubt. I may perhaps have consumed the energy essential for military services manoeuvres, but I pretty hardly ever indulged in any workout with even remotely the identical enthusiasm I had for ingesting.
On arrival at Granny’s Dundee tenement – quite handsome, solid and good, surprisingly so compared with a great deal that is created in existing instances – I was greeted to the rich savour of a pan of lentil soup simmering on the stove in her very small scullery. A further pan, tightly sealed, sat further than the soup and within was the cheeriest prospect: a suet pudding. A mighty weapon from the winter’s gloom.
For the pastry
225g self-boosting flour, sifted
A pinch of salt
60g chilly, hard butter, additionally much more for greasing
A spoonful or two of milk
For filling the levels
The zest and juice of two lemons
5 perfectly-sized crisp apples
180g dim muscavado sugar
50g floor almonds
30ml dim rum
1 heaped tsp floor ginger
½ a nutmeg, finely grated
1 heaped tsp floor mace
1 heaped tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 Lightly rub a small butter in excess of the within of a pudding basin and lay a disc of greaseproof paper lower to suit the bottom of it.
2 Set a huge bowl on a desk. Idea in the sifted flour, insert in the pinch of salt and the suet. Grate the butter into the flour, then insert in the milk. With swift, deft moves, carry all this collectively to variety a dough shaped into a ball. Get rid of the dough from the bowl and knead evenly.
3 The dough wants to be slash into three items – just one compact more than enough that, when rolled the thickness of a pinkie, it will sit easily on the base of the lined pudding basin. The next piece will make it possible for for a disc of dough, also a pinkie deep, to sit in the center of the pudding. Final, you must be still left with plenty of for a larger sized disc the total diameter of the basin to total the construction.
4 Zest the two lemons and set the zest aside. Pour their juice into a significant bowl, then peel the apples and roll just about every a person in the lemon juice. Quarter every single peeled apple, then get rid of the main and the pips and slice thinly – say a few or 4 slices. Toss the slices of apple in the lemon juice.
5 Insert the remaining components and combine alongside one another perfectly. Unfold just one 3rd of the apple combination on the bottom disc of dough. Lay the next disc of dough on this, then heap in the remaining apple. Spread evenly, then lay on the final disc of suet pastry.
6 Lay a disc of greaseproof paper on leading of the ultimate disc of dough. Seal the pudding basin with a limited-fitting lid, or tin foil scrunched tightly, or discs of greaseproof paper secured tightly beneath muslin with string. Place the basin on an upturned plate in a pan of simmering h2o that will come a single 3rd the way up the pudding basin. Seal the pan with a tight-fitting lid and allow it steam for 3 several hours.
7 Let the pudding stand for at the very least half an hour right before unmoulding. Unmould it on to a handsome dish. Decant a terrific pan of custard into a jug and provide.
Jeremy Lee is the chef-proprietor of Quo Vadis cafe in London