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Persimmon Pudding

(recipe, Edna Lewis)


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Introduction

Uncultivated persimmons are more delicious after a frost has fallen on them — and the ones around us were at their best just about Christmastime. Uncultivated ones are not as juicy but they are more tasty and darker when frostbitten.

Ingredients

  1. 4 oz. suet
  2. ⅔ cup freshly grated breadcrumbs, without the crust
  3. ½ cup hot milk
  4. 1 packed cup brown sugar
  5. ¼ cup flour
  6. 3 eggs, separated
  7. ¼ tsp. salt
  8. 1 tsp. cinnamon
  9. 1 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
  10. ½ tsp. mace
  11. 4 large cultivated persimmons (triple the number if using wild persimmons)
  12. ¼ cup rum
  13. 2 tsp. baking powder

Steps

  1. Remove all tissue and skin from the suet and chop it finely with a chopping knife. Remove the crust from enough slices of white bread to make ⅔ cup grated. (Grating bread against the large holes of a box grater makes much lighter crumbs; it is quick and easy, too.) Put the crumbs into a large mixing bowl. Pour the hot milk over the crumbs and leave them to stand a few minutes. Add the chopped suet, mix well, add sugar and flour and stir.
  2. Beat the egg yolks and add them to the suet-crumb mixture; stir well. Add the salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and mace, stirring after each addition. Cut the persimmons in half, remove the seeds, and scoop out the pulp. You should have about 2½ cups; add it to the suet-crumb mixture. Add the rum and baking powder. Lastly, beat the egg whites until stiff, fold them into the mixture, and spoon the mixture into a pudding mold.
  3. Cover and set the mold into a container of boiling water. Steam for 1½ hours. Remove from burner and leave to cool in mold. Reheat by steaming again on a slow burner for 1 hour. Serve hot with Clear Sauce.