Sourced from a Christmas present cookbook and given an American twist this Surprise Key Lime Pudding Cake forms a sponge cake top layer with a limey pudding base for a dessert that is easy, light and delicious.
I once read that humankind does not give up anything when an innovation comes along: they just add it to the collection. For example, radio did not supplant books, movies did not supplant radio, television did not supplant movies, and live streaming has not eradicated the TV. We still use them all.
Cookbooks and the internet are another example of this. I love a good cookbook and yet I often turn to the convenience of the internet when I need a recipe. That’s because, to me, they serve different purposes. I use the internet when I already have an idea of what I want to make and am looking for recipes. Reading a cookbook is a voyage of discovery. Between the pages and the pictures I explore different foods and cuisines, I find techniques and methods which are new to me. Curiously I do my best cookbook reading when I am hungry. And I have been hungry this month!
Which brings me to a cookbook I received this Christmas: Baking With Mary Berry.
For those of you who don’t know who Mary Berry is, she is the grandmother of British baking made familiar to Americans in her role as one of the judges of the Great British Baking Show. Mary Berry cheerfully tossed out challenges for baked goods which many Americans had never heard of. I lived in the U.K. for seven years so things like Bakewell Tarts, Jammy Dodgers and Swiss Rolls are not entirely foreign to me and it was with some nostalgia that I open the book.
I was looking for a recipe to make for the man who gave the cookbook to me. And I found one. Then, since this was the “American Edition” of Mary Berry’s cookbook, I gave it an American twist. Magic Lemon Pudding has been turned into Surprise Key Lime Pudding Cake.
With the exception of whipping the egg whites, this is an easy recipe. Once baked the “pudding” separates into two layers: a light sponge cake on top and a creamy limey sauce on the bottom. It’s the easy version of a lava cake.
You will need butter, twelve Key Limes (or four limes) eggs, sugar, flour and milk. Six ingredients. That’s all it takes.
Cream the butter, sugar and lime zest until it’s fluffy then add the egg yolks, flour and lime juice. Once that’s incorporated, slowly pour in the milk until it is mixed in.
In a separate bowl, whip the egg whites until they are stiff but not dry.
Stir a big spoonful into the egg yolk batter to lighten it and then fold in the rest of the egg whites. Pour the mixture into a greased two cup baking dish.
Put the dish in a large baking pan and pour hot water around it until it is at least halfway up the dish.
Carefully put it in the oven and bake. You will know it is done when the top springs back like a finished cake.
This pudding can be served, hot, cold or at room temperature!
SURPRISE KEY LIME PUDDING CAKE
- ¼ c butter softened
- 12 key limes or 4 limes
- ½ c sugar
- 2 large eggs
- ¼ c flour
- ¾ cup milk
- Powdered Sugar
- Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.
- Grate the zest of the limes. Add the zest to the sugar and butter in a mixing bowl and beat until the mixture is light and fluffy.
- Separate the eggs.
- Juice the limes and add the juice to the sugar mixture along with the egg yolks and the flour. Beat together at low speed until it is mixed in.
- Slowly add the milk and stir until it is well mixed.
- In a separate bowl, whip the egg whites until they hold a stiff peak when the beater is lifted.
- Stir a large spoonful of the beaten egg whites into the egg yolk and sugar mixture to lighten it, then carefully fold in the remaining egg whites.
- Spray or butter a 2-cup baking dish.
- Pour the pudding mixture into the dish and put the dish into a larger baking dish. Add hot water to the larger baking dish until it reaches halfway up the height of the batter in the pudding bowl.
- Place the pudding in its water bath on the center rack of the preheated oven.
- Bake for 40-43 minutes until the top springs back when touch.
- To serve dust lightly with powdered sugar. Can be serve hot, cold, or at room temperature.