An impressive dessert recipe to keep on hand, these little steam oven lemon puddings are simple to mix up and reheat amazingly well, making them a perfect do-ahead dinner party finale.
Before we get into today’s post, I wanted to let you all know I’ve finally created a Combi Steam Cooking group over on Facebook! This site is continuing to grow in reader numbers, which I’m thrilled about, but more readers means more admin and it’s become hard for me to answer every email I receive in a reasonable time. The group is a more accessible place to get quick answers from me, and from other steam oven owners. You can post questions, pictures of recipes you’ve tried or dishes you’d like to try to convert and I’ll check in to help out with replies and Facebook Live videos to answer common questions or give tips. I really hope you’ll join in because the more people who participate, the more everyone gets out of it. Head to the link here and request to join (you'll need to be a subscriber, which you can do by clicking right here). I can’t wait to see you in there.
Steamed pudding is such an underrated dessert, and if you own a steam oven but haven’t yet discovered their appeal I think you’re missing out. Today we’re going to fix that, with a steam oven recipe for classic lemon pudding.
I often pass over the gentle comfort of a pudding for brasher, trendier dessert darlings like peanut butter brownies or all things involving salted caramel, but it’s really my loss, for the nostalgic enjoyment which comes from this most English of desserts – preferably drenched in cream, custard or rapidly melting ice cream – is hard to beat.
Cooking puddings in a steam oven
I think one of the reasons people don’t make steamed puddings, except maybe at Christmas, is all the mucking around that’s usually required to steam them. Upturned plates and pots of boiling water which need frequent topping up, string tied to a wooden spoon handle to lift the pudding basin out after cooking - it all seems a bit much effort.
It’s not hard, though, when you have a steam oven in your kitchen. All you need to do is cover the vessel with pleated aluminium foil, set on a tray and you’re ready to steam your pudding. Or, in today’s case, lots of little puddings.
If you’re wondering about what vessels to use for steaming your puddings, I have some great half-cup dariole molds, which I love because they’re light and easy to turn the puddings out of (they’re excellent for steamed and set custard desserts too). You could use little teacups or ramekins instead, in which case you can serve them in the dish they're steamed in. Just beware if you use a thick porcelain or ceramic for small puddings you’ll likely need to add a few minutes to the cooking time, to allow for the dishes to heat up. Oh, and don’t use your Gran’s best china unless you’re sure it’s heatproof!
Happy steam oven cooking, see you here again soon.
Recipe: Individual Steamed Lemon Puddings
Makes 6 individual puddings, or a single large one.
This is a dish you could make as one larger pudding but I’ve opted to turn it into pretty little single serve ones. They’re easy to make, keep well in the fridge or freezer and if you were an organised host, you could make some well ahead of time for a dinner party dessert almost no-one will turn down. If you’re making ahead and reheating, just put the covered puddings in the oven at 100⁰C/212⁰F for 10-15 minutes to warm through before serving.
If you’d like to make this in a large single pudding basin, use a 1L bowl and steam, covered, for 1 ½ hours to cook through.
I like to serve this with pouring cream or ice cream, though my husband loves it with custard.
170g (oz) unsalted butter, softened
125g (1/2 cup) caster sugar
250g (1 2/3 cups) plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
Zest and juice from 2 lemons
1. Lightly grease the inside of 6 x ½ cup molds and line the base of each with a little square of baking paper (if you’re cooking your puddings in ramekins or cups and don’t plan to turn them out for serving, skip the baking paper). Set aside.
2. Cream the butter and sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer until light and fluffy.
3. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well to mix after each addition.
4. Mix the flour and baking powder together in a bowl, then fold in the butter/egg mixture until just combined. Add the lemon zest and juice and gently mix until smooth.
5. Preheat oven to 100⁰C/212⁰F, steam setting (100% humidity).
6. Divide the mixture evenly between the greased molds and smooth the tops. Cover each with a pleated piece of aluminium foil – press the foil around the molds but not too tightly as they need enough ‘give’ to rise a little.
7. Put the molds onto a rack or perforated tray and steam for 25 minutes to cook through. Stand for 5 minutes before turning out and serving with cream, ice cream or custard.
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And if you’re after more delicious combi steam recipes, use the Recipe Index to find something to serve up before these puddings. I recommend the Steam Oven Salmon with Lemon, Asparagus and Potatoes, or Moroccan Couscous with Lamb Fillets for crowd-pleasing dinners.