Sussex Pond Pudding
The "pond" in a Sussex pond comes from the liquid that slowly cooks inside the pastry; as the pudding steams, butter and brown sugar melt into sliced lemons, morphing into a glossy, perfumed sauce (our take has kumquats as well).
- Yield: Makes 4
Source: Martha Stewart Living, February 2007
For the Dough
- 3 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
- 4 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 1/4 teaspoons salt
- 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces, plus more softened for parchment, or 6 ounces shredded suet
- 3/4 cup ice water
For the Filling
- 3/4 cup packed light-brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
- 12 kumquats, halved crosswise, seeds removed
- 1 small lemon, very thinly sliced crosswise, seeds removed
Make the dough: Pulse flour, baking powder, and salt in a food processor until combined. Add butter, and pulse until mixture resembles coarse meal. Add ice water, and process until mixture forms a soft dough. Shape dough into a disk, and wrap in plastic. Refrigerate 30 minutes.
Set a round wire rack in bottom of a large stockpot. Set four 1-cup pudding basins or ramekins (about 3 3/4 inches in diameter and 2 1/2 inches high) on rack. Fill pot with enough water to come about three-quarters of the way up sides of pudding basins. Remove basins, and dry. Cover pot, and bring to a boil.
Butter four 5-inch rounds of parchment paper; set aside. Unwrap dough; transfer to a lightly floured work surface. Roll out to 1/8 inch thick, and cut out four 9-inch rounds. Cut a 2-inch wedge from each round to make it easier to fit dough into basins; wrap wedges and remaining scraps of dough in plastic, and refrigerate until ready to use. Fit a dough round into each basin, overlapping cut sides of wedge and pressing seams to seal, allowing a 1-inch overhang.
Fill the puddings: Sprinkle 1 tablespoon brown sugar into each basin. Divide butter among basins. Add kumquats and lemon slices, dividing evenly. Sprinkle each with 2 tablespoons brown sugar.
Transfer remaining dough to a lightly floured work surface. Roll out to 1/8 inch thick. Using 2 1/2-inch cutters, cut out 4 rounds. Place on top of filling. Fold overhang over top, and pinch seams to seal.
Place a parchment round, buttered side down, on top of each pudding. Make a pleat in center of each round. Cover each with a 6-inch round of foil, pleating if desired. For each pudding, cut a piece of kitchen twine about 3 feet long. Wrap twine twice around basin over foil, just below lip. Knot to secure. Tie loose ends to twine on other side of basin, creating a handle.
Lower puddings into boiling water; cover. Return to a boil; reduce to a simmer, and steam 2 1/2 hours, adding boiling water occasionally to maintain level.
Transfer puddings to a wire rack, and let cool 10 minutes. Run a knife around edges of bowls to loosen, and invert puddings onto serving plates. Serve warm.