A great traditional South African treat to take on a camping trip or for your overseas guests or for granny’s birthday. The recipe makes two 24 cm puddings.
Spiced Brandy Cream:
- 1 cup fresh cream
- a pinch sea salt
- a large pinch ground cinnamon
- a large pinch ground ginger
- 1 tbsp sugar
- 1 tsp powdered gelatine
- 1 tbsp brandy
- 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 250 g pitted dates, diced
- ¾ cup boiling water
- 250 g butter, at room temperature
- 3 extra-large free-range eggs, at room temperature
- 600 g box Ina Paarman’s vanilla cake mix
- 1 cup sour cream or crème fraîche
- 50 g pecan nuts, chopped
- 125 g sugar
- ½ cup water
- 1 tbsp butter
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- ¾ cup brandy, sherry or fresh orange juice
- grated orange rind, to decorate
Make the spiced brandy cream first so it has enough time to chill. Half-whip the cream with the salt and spices. Mix the sugar with the gelatine powder, add to the cream and whip until firm. Fold in the brandy. Cover and chill until needed.
To make the pudding, sprinkle the bicarbonate of soda over the dates. Pour over the boiling water, then set aside to cool.
Preheat the oven to 180°C and make sure the shelf is in the middle. Grease 2 x 24 cm ovenproof pie dishes with butter. Ignore the package instructions for the cake mix and follow this method.
Cream the butter until soft. Add 1 egg and 1 tbsp dry cake mix at a time, beating after each addition, until you have used all 3 eggs. Beat in the sour cream or crème fraiche. Add half the remaining cake mix and all the date mixture. Stir with a spatula until blended. Fold in the remaining cake mix.
Divide the mixture evenly between the two pie dishes. Sprinkle over the nuts and bake for 35 minutes.
While the pudding is in the oven, make the sauce. Bring the sugar, water and butter to the boil in a saucepan. Remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla and brandy, sherry or juice. Prick the tops of the puddings as soon as they come out of the oven. Pour the warm sauce over the hot puddings, then set aside to cool. Serve with the spiced brandy cream and decorate with the grated orange rind.