quarta-feira, 28 de abril de 2010

Daring Bakers' Challenge - April 2010

Blog-checking lines: The April 2010 Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Esther of The Lilac Kitchen. She challenged everyone to make a traditional British pudding using, if possible, a very traditional British ingredient: suet.

Recipe Source: Recipes come from the following sources: Delia Smith’s Complete Cookery Course, The pudding club (http://www.puddingclub.com/), Mrs Beeton’s Book of Household Management and the Dairy Book of Home Cooking and my family’s recipe notes!

Variations allowed: we were allowed completely free rein on flavours and fillings.
Any variations due to restricted diets are of course allowed. Due to the way these recipes are cooked it’s very easy to substitute for gluten-free flours and get very much the same results as wheat.
They can be made vegetarian and even vegan just by using the vegetarian replacement suet and an appropriate flavour/filling.

Type 1 Puddings — suet crusts.
Pudding Crust for both Savoury Pudding or Sweet Pudding (using suet or a suet substitute):
250 g Self-raising flour (Note* If you cannot find self-raising flour, use a combination of all-purpose flour and baking powder.)
175 g Shredded suet or suet substitute (i.e., Vegetable Suet, Crisco, Lard)
Salt and pepper (Note* If making a savory dish, can be replaced with spices for sweet if wished.)
210 ml Water (Note* You can use a milk or a water and milk mix for a richer pastry.)
Mix the flour and suet together. Season the flour and suet mixture with salt and pepper if savory and just a bit of salt and/or spices if sweet. Add the water, a tablespoonful at a time, as you mix the ingredients together. Make up the pastry to firm an elastic dough that leaves the bowl clean. The liquid amounts are only an estimate and most recipes just say water to mix. Don’t over handle the pastry or it will be too hard. Reserve a quarter for the lid and roll out the rest and line a well-greased bowl. At this point add your filling. Roll the final piece of pastry out into a circle big enough to cover the top of the basin, dampen the edges and put in position on the pudding, pinching the edges together to seal. Seal well and cover with a double sheet of foil – pleated in the centre to allow room for expansion while cooking. Secure with string, and place it in a steamer over boiling water. Steam for up to 5 hours, you may need to add more boiling water halfway through or possibly more often. There is a lot of leeway in this steaming time and different recipes give different steaming times. Delia Smith says 5 hours for Steak and kidney where as Mrs Beeton says 2.5 for a similar dish! One way to tell that it is cooked is when the pastry changes colour and goes from white to a sort of light golden brown. It is also hard to over steam a pudding so you can leave it bubbling away until you are ready.

This sort of pastry can also be used as a topping for a baked meat pie and becomes quite a light crusty pastry when baked.

Sweet Pudding Options: Sussex Pond Pudding
1 amount of suet pastry (see recipe above)
120 g Demerara Sugar
120 g unsalted butter
1 large lemon
Cut the butter into small pieces and put half in the basin with half the sugar. Prick the whole lemon (preferably one with a thin skin) all over, using a thick skewer. Place on top of the butter and sugar in the basin. Cover with the rest of the butter and sugar. Finish building the pudding as per the pastry recipe. Steam for 3 ½ hours, or longer (for a really tender lemon), adding more water if needed. To serve, turn the pudding into a dish with a deep rim, when you slice into it the rich lemon sauce will gush out. Make sure each person is served some of the suet crust, lemon and tangy luscious sauce.

Now I must say:I must have done something REALLY wrong!
I couln'd find suet in the market. We are not used to that in Brasil. I asked my butcher and he told me to go to a place where the animals are killed.Well, the nearest one is an hour driving distance. No way! So I used lard. Pork lard.
The first thing I've noticed was I should not use the same amount of lard as of suet. It wouldn'd work. I understood that this dough should be done as a pate sable, mixing that fat with flour, using 2 knives, til you have something with a coarse consistency, so I had to add more flour to get the desired consistency of the dough. 
I was fascinated too by the idea of the Sussex Pond. Whole lemon? I was wondering if it wouln'd be to bitter, you know? That white peel usually tastes bad. But, I decided to try.
The result was awful. I don't know if it was the amount of fat (lard from the dough + butter from the filling) but I didn't get that flaky pastry. I looked more like the other type of pudding, The sponge type (look below).  And, of couse, it was incredible bitter and...I don't know how to express that. Terrible, disgusting, Baaaggghhh!
Someone asked me if I used waxed lemons. Well, I've never heard anithing about waxing lemons until I joined the DK. And I could find noone who knew anithing about that. I suppose limes, lemons and orages are not waxed in Brasil unless they are exported (?). So that was not the problem. I don't know what might have happen...
But I was decided to try this again. Perhaps with another filling. And I wanted to make a Spoted Dick too. I've first listened about that a long time ago, in a Jamie Oliver's TV show. Since than, I'm very curious. Keep reading.

Type 2 puddings – Steamed Suet Pudding, sponge type.
100 g All-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoons Baking powder
100 g breadcrumbs
75 g Caster sugar
75 g Shredded suet or suet substitute (i.e., Vegetable Suet, Crisco, Lard)
1 large egg
6 to 8 tablespoons Cold milk
Sift flour, salt and baking powder into bowl. Add breadcrumbs, sugar and suet. Mix to a soft batter with beaten egg and milk. Turn into a buttered 1 litre/ 2pint pudding basin and cover securely with buttered greaseproof paper or aluminum foil. Steam steadily for 2.5 to 3 hours. Turn out onto warm plate, Serve with sweet sauce to taste such as custard, caramel or a sweetened fruit sauce.

Spotted Dick - Add 75g/ 3oz currants and 25g/1 oz of mixed chopped peel with the sugar.

This time everything was ok. No mistakes. I liked the Spoted Dick very much. I think I'll do it again. But I'll use butter insted of lard. I belive it will be even better.

Many thanks to Esther for this challenge. I loved taking part of it. I'm sure I'll try alot more puddings in a near future.

Additional Information:

Vegetable suet:

Delia Smith shows you how to make suet pastry with step-by-step photos here: (http://www.deliaonline.com/how-to-cook/baking/how-to-make-suet-pastry.html).

Video of the whole process of making a suet crust pudding.

Video of making a steamed pudding:

A very good place to find recipes for many British puddings is the Pudding Club website http://www.puddingclub.com/

Steamed Pudding:

Mrs Beeton of course had many suet based puddings in her book and thefoody.com lists many of them. Some are described as boiled but nearly all can be steamed in a bowl in the same way as the full recipes I've give here including:

Staffordshire Fig Pudding:
Boiled raisin Pudding
Boiled Rhubarb Pudding
Ginger pudding
 and several more.

Bacon and Leek Pudding:

Butter based versions of steamed pudding

Found a vegan one

The whole of Mrs Beeton on line

and just the puddings

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