Rhubarb Sponge Pudding with Orange and Dates

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I love rhubarb. Just the smell of it transports me back to our kitchen at home when I was a child and conjures up memories of wonderful Sunday dinners and a happy childhood. My mother was a great pudding maker and would have made the most of the home grown produce from the family allotment. I often hear people say that they dislike rhubarb, but cooked like this how could they resist it?

My recipe once again uses the all in one method and is very simple to make. The quantities I have used make a pudding sufficient for 4 people.

INGREDIENTS:

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For the fruit base:

a few sticks of rhubarb

a heaped tablespoon of soft brown sugar, or a little more to taste

the grated rind of ½ an orange

a tablespoon of two of orange juice

two or three soft dried dates, chopped (optional)

For the sponge:

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2 large free range eggs

the weight of those eggs (in their shells) of soft brown sugar, self raising flour and very soft butter

the grated rind of ½ an orange

2 tablespoons of orange juice

METHOD:

  • slice the washed rhubarb into roughly 1″ pieces

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  • put the rhubarb into a pan with the sugar, orange rind, chopped dates and orange juice
  • simmer the rhubarb on a very low heat until it is starting to soften but still holds it’s shape. Try not to let it overcook as it will just become rhubarb pulp and will lose it’s vibrant colour
  • preheat the oven to 180°C
  • whilst the rhubarb is cooking prepare the sponge. Place all of the ingredients into a large mixing bowl and beat everything together until the mixture is smooth and creamy
  • place the cooked rhubarb into the base of a well-greased ovenproof dish
  • spoon the sponge mixture on top of the rhubarb and then cook the pudding for approximately 50 minutes, or until well risen and golden brown

To appreciate this pudding at it’s best serve it with a jug of thick yellow custard or a big dollop of thick cream according to your taste

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Delicious!

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