Thursday, September 28, 2006

Malva Pudding

PHOTO: Quyen's Malva Pudding with Vanilla Ice Cream (I didn't have time to make ice cream). Pardon the missing green sprig of mint.

As mentioned in my other blog, I had my first attempt at Malva Pudding (a traditional South African dessert.) Wherever we went, Thabo and I would always order Malva Pudding. Some places totally missed, but the pudding at SOULSA in Melville and KITCHEN BAR in Bryanston hit the mark exactly. Ethereal clouds of sweetness that melted in your mouth...Absolutely divine.

The ones that missed were just way too sweet, and the texture too grainy, like cornbread. You definitely need ice cream or custard to cut the sweetness, and everything just tastes better a la mode, right?

I was horrifically delighted as I poured the boiling cream, butter, and sugar mixture over the cake immediately after it came out of the oven, the mixture still bubbling as it seeped its way into every crevice of the evenly browned cake. It seemed like way too much liquid, but the cake drank up every ounce.

I'm not sure if every recipe includes vinegar in it, but I found that to be interesting--if you've made Red Velvet Cake you'll know that that has vinegar in it as well, but this used regular milk, not buttermilk. I wonder if there is still some sort of chemical reaction that occurs, as I've noticed in both recipes you always want to stir in the vinegar right before it goes into the oven. I'll do some research and get back to you on that one!

So here's my first attempt at Malva Pudding. Next time I think I'll use about a quarter cup less of cream to pour on top, and maybe pour half the mixture, wait a little, then spoon the rest, as it wasn't perfectly distributed. Tastewise, though, it was fantastic--not too sweet, moist, yummy. I could actually bake it a little longer, though, as it wasn't evenly browned as I thought upon first inspection.

If you'd like to try it, this is the recipe I used.

Wish you could have a bite,

Tonight's dinner:

Pesto Chicken Pizza (homemade of course, with toasted pignoli, or pine nuts)

I just bought a new baking stone, since my other one cracked for some reason. If you have an oven that turns on and off, a baking stone helps regulate the temperature, providing a calibrated environment for your delicate baked goods. It's also good to have an internal thermometer.

OK, I'm off to prep my pizza dough...