Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Comfort food for England fans - Banana Butterscotch Pudding

Oh, England.  Oh, boys!  What happened?

The dedicated readers of this blog will know that I'm not too fussed about football.  Still, it's a pity when England has 'flattered to decieve' (as my husband likes to say) yet again.  I really am sorry though, as I tend to romanticise about old Blighty, being so far away from home.  It's true that sometimes, even in this beautiful city of Cape Town, indeed one of the most beautiful and picturesque cities in the world, I still think about the vast green land of England, even long for the grey skies in my worst bouts of homesickness.  But one of the things I think England really has to be commended for,undisputed, is the wealth of literature and the host of literary giants that have been born and nurtured within it's shores.  The English may not play great football anymore, but people, make no mistake, they have one of the best literary traditions in the world!!

What on earth am I talking about?  Well, as a prelude to the recipe I'm including in this post, I would like to cite C.S.Lewis, author of The Chronicles of Narnia.  When I made this Banana Butterscotch Pudding last week, not only was I thrilled that this is a quick and easy self-saucing pudding (I mean, a pudding that  makes its own sauce - what more could you ask for??) but it made me think of Lewis' Chronicles and I smiled to myself, thinking how the author would incorporate a pudding like this into the book.  For those of you who don't know, C.S. Lewis writes about such English characters such as Peter, the strapping young man that England would have been proud of in the days of both World Wars, going off to battle, fighting bravely, and somehow always managing to come home victorious, in time for tea, and usually a few crisply burned sausages and home baked bread too.  I imagined, while sampling some of the pudding I had made, that the quotation would go something like this:

"They marched homewards from the battle, exhausted but jubilant.  Their worries about provisions for the way back were nullified, as Mrs. Squirrel had managed to prepare a Banana Butterscotch Pudding from the Bananas that Sgt. Monkey had hunted for them, and from the cane of a kind Sugar-Fairy they chanced to meet on their travels through the Forgotten Forest.  As they made camp that evening under the stars, Peter sat, deep in thought about about everything that had passed recently, how his life had taken such a drastic change so quickly, and he felt excited and nervous at the same time about his next meeting with Aslan.  Lucy handed him a bowl of Mrs. Squirrel's Banana Butterscoth pudding, and as he took his first bite, he suddenly felt as though he was back home in London.  The sweet warmth of the pudding melted into his tired mind and body, and he soon fell into a much needed deep sleep."

I had a lot of time to think about this, as you can see.   Whip up this pudding, England fans (or anybody, indeed) and reminisce about 'better days'.

Taken from the July issue of Your Family magazine.


For the pudding
210 ml cake flour
pinch salt
140ml castor sugar
1 tbsp (15ml) baking powder
1 mashed banana
1 cup (250ml) milk
90ml melted butter
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 tsp vanilla essence

For the topping
140ml soft brown sugar
1/4 cup (60ml) golden syrup
1 cup (250ml) boiling water

- Preheat oven to 180 degrees C.  Lightly grease a 2.5l baking dish.
- Sift the flour, salt, castor sugar and baking powder together.  Add the banana, milk, butter, egg and vanilla essence and whisk until well combined.  Pour into the prepared baking dish.
- For the topping, place the brown sugar, syrup and water in a small saucepan and bring to a boil.  Carefully pour the boiling mixture over the pudding, then bake for 40 mins (time varies according to your oven) until it's cooked through when tested with a skewer.

Good with custard.  Great with créme fraiche.  Amazing with vanilla ice cream.


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