Steamed Cranberry Pudding with Eggnog Sauce

As Christmas approaches and temperatures dip (at least for those of us who live in colder climates), my thoughts tend to turn to substantial “comfort” foods — visions of roast turkey, stuffing and gravy, cranberry sauce, fluffy mashed potatoes, and lots of root vegetables (such as carrots and turnip) enter my head.  And then, of course, there are the dessert options.  Traditionally, in my family, the main Christmas meal of roast turkey is followed by a rich steamed plum pudding served with a brown sugar sauce. You can get my recipe for plum pudding here.

However, there are other options for steamed pudding, particularly for those who prefer something a little lighter than the rich plum pudding. So, I am sharing my recipe for steamed cranberry pudding which is divine when served with a decadent eggnog sauce (recipe follows).

Steamed Cranberry Pudding with Eggnog Sauce
Steamed Cranberry Pudding with Eggnog Sauce

This cranberry pudding is super easy to make and, when paired with a smooth and silky eggnog sauce….well….you might want to have a second pudding on hand for those who have room for seconds!

This pudding is not highly spiced.  It has just enough cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves to give it subtle flavour.  Either fresh or frozen cranberries may be used.  In order to release their flavour, the cranberries should be coarsely chopped into about 2-3 pieces each for this pudding.  Tossing the cut berries in some sugar while the batter is being prepared further draws out their flavour.

If you don’t have a steamed pudding mould like the one in the photo below, you can use clean tin cans or even a metal bowl.  Simply spoon the batter into the cans or bowl, cover with a double thickness of heavy-duty tin foil, and secure it with string.  The important thing is that, whatever vessel is used, it has a tight cover for the steaming process since the steam is what cooks the pudding and maintains the moisture without leaving the pudding wet and soggy. I used a standard 8-cup mould but I believe a 6-cup mould would suffice for this pudding.

Steamed Pudding Mould
Steamed Pudding Mould

The advantages of using a pudding mould specially designed for steaming puddings is that it comes with its own cover and it also has a funnel in the center which helps the pudding to cook evenly and without falling. This, of course, is in addition to the attractive shape of the pudding when it is unmoulded and plated.

To steam this pudding, a large stock pot will be needed – one that allows enough room for the pudding mould to sit in the center of the pot and has at least 1 1/2 ” – 2 ” space all around the mould.  A small wire rack that fits into the pot will also be required.  This is what the mould needs to sit on as the pudding steams.

It’s important that the mould (or bowl or tin cans) not touch the bottom or sides of the pot as the water needs to circulate all around the pot (including underneath the pudding mould) in order for the pudding to cook evenly. Once the pudding mould is set on the wire rack, carefully pour in enough boiling water to come up to about the half-way point on the pudding mould.  This is the level of water that must be maintained throughout the entire steaming process so additional boiling water may need to be added as the pudding steams. Once the boiling water has been added to the stock pot, cover the large pot with a lid and bring the water back to a full boil then immediately reduce the heat to a gentle boil.

Generally speaking, you’ll need to allot at least 1 1/2 – 2 hours for the pudding to steam over medium-low heat.  This, however, is only an estimate and the true test is when a cake tester inserted into the center of the pudding comes out clean.  I recommend removing the lid from the pudding mould and checking the pudding with a cake tester at the 1 1/2-hour point and then, if not cooked, about every 10 minutes after until the tester comes out clean. When the pudding is cooked, remove it from its water bath and place the mould on a wire rack.  Let the pudding rest in the mould for about 20 minutes then remove the lid from the mould and transfer the pudding to a serving plate.

Steamed Cranberry Pudding
Steamed Cranberry Pudding

While this pudding would be well complimented by a traditional brown sugar sauce, it is particularly tasty served with a rich eggnog sauce.  For ultimate flavour, the eggnog sauce is best served lukewarm, rather than piping hot, and can actually even be served quite cool.  Because of the sauce’s richness, not a lot of the sauce is needed per serving.  If you are an eggnog lover, you will love this sauce which would be equally good served over a bread pudding, too.

Steamed Cranberry Pudding
Steamed Cranberry Pudding

 

Steamed Cranberry Pudding

Ingredients:

1 1/3 cups coarsely chopped cranberries, fresh or frozen

½ cup butter
¾ cup granulated sugar (reserve ¼ cup for tossing with cranberries)
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
2 tsp grated orange rind

1½ cups flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp soda
¼ tsp salt
½ tsp cinnamon
¼ tsp nutmeg
1/8 tsp cloves

2 tbsp prepared eggnog
2 tbsp milk
1 tbsp Cointreau

Method:

Grease 6- or 8-cup pudding mould or spray with cooking spray.

Toss the coarsely chopped cranberries with ¼ cup of the sugar, ensuring the cut sides of the berries are coated. Set aside.

Cream butter and remaining sugar in large bowl. Beat in egg and vanilla. Add grated orange rind.

In separate bowl, sift the flour, baking powder, soda, salt, and spices.

In small bowl, whisk together eggnog, milk, and Cointreau.

Add dry ingredients to the butter-sugar-egg mixture alternately with the wet ingredients, starting and ending with the dry ingredients.

Lastly, fold in the cranberries. Transfer batter to prepared pudding mould. Cover tightly with lid. Place mould on wire rack in large pot and fill pot with boiling water to about half way up the side of the mould. Cover steamer pot with lid and bring the water to a full boil then immediately reduce the heat to a gentle boil. Steam the pudding over medium-low heat for approximately 1½ hours or until cake tester inserted into centre of pudding comes out clean. (NOTE: Add more water to pot as necessary to maintain the water level at about the half-way point on the pudding mould during the entire steaming process.) Remove mould from water bath and place on wire rack and let rest for 20 minutes then turn pudding out onto serving dish and serve warm with Eggnog Sauce (recipe below).

Yield: Apx. 10-12 servings

Eggnog  Sauce

Ingredients:

2/3 cup sugar
1½ – 2 tbsp cornstarch
¼ tsp nutmeg
2 cups prepared eggnog
2 tsp vanilla
3 tbsp Cointreau
2 tbsp butter

Method:

In small bowl, combine the sugar, cornstarch, and nutmeg.

Pour eggnog into large microwaveable-safe bowl. Whisk in dry ingredients until smooth. Cook on HIGH until mixture is thickened to desired consistency, stirring after each 1½ minutes. Remove from microwave and stir in vanilla, Cointreau, and butter. (Note: Sauce will thicken slightly more as it cools.)

Sauce is best served lukewarm, spooned over individual slices of Steamed Cranberry Pudding.

Yield: Apx. 2 cups

Steamed Cranberry Pudding
Steamed Cranberry Pudding

 

Steamed Cranberry Pudding with Eggnog Sauce

Yield: Apx. 10-12 servings

A tasty steamed pudding served with smooth and silky eggnog sauce

Ingredients

  • For Pudding:
  • 1 1/3 cups coarsely chopped cranberries, fresh or frozen
  • ½ cup butter
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar (reserve ¼ cup for tossing with cranberries)
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 tsp grated orange rind
  • 1½ cups flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp soda
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp nutmeg
  • 1/8 tsp cloves
  • 2 tbsp prepared eggnog
  • 2 tbsp milk
  • 1 tbsp Cointreau
  • Eggnog Sauce Ingredients:
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1½ - 2 tbsp cornstarch
  • ¼ tsp nutmeg
  • 2 cups prepared eggnog
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 3 tbsp Cointreau
  • 2 tbsp butter

Instructions

  1. Grease 6- or 8-cup pudding mould or spray with cooking spray.
  2. Toss the coarsely chopped cranberries with ¼ cup of the sugar, ensuring the cut sides of the berries are coated. Set aside.
  3. Cream butter and remaining sugar in large bowl. Beat in egg and vanilla. Add grated orange rind.
  4. In separate bowl, sift flour, baking powder, soda, salt, and spices.
  5. In small bowl, whisk together eggnog, milk, and Cointreau.
  6. Add dry ingredients to the butter-sugar-egg mixture alternately with the wet ingredients, starting and ending with the dry ingredients.
  7. Lastly, fold in the cranberries. Transfer batter to prepared pudding mould. Cover tightly with lid. Place mould on wire rack in large pot and fill pot with boiling water to about half way up the side of the mould. Cover steamer pot with lid and bring the water to a full boil then immediately reduce the heat to a gentle boil. Steam the pudding over medium-low heat for approximately 1½ hours or until cake tester inserted into centre of pudding comes out clean. (NOTE: Add more water to pot as necessary to maintain the water level at about the half-way point on the pudding mould during the entire steaming process.) Remove mould from water bath and place on wire rack and let rest for 20 minutes then turn pudding out onto serving dish and serve warm with Eggnog Sauce (recipe below).
  8. Eggnog Sauce:
  9. In small bowl, combine the sugar, cornstarch, and nutmeg.
  10. Pour eggnog into large microwaveable-safe bowl. Whisk in dry ingredients until smooth. Cook on HIGH until mixture is thickened to desired consistency, stirring after each 1½ minutes. Remove from microwave and stir in vanilla, Cointreau, and butter. (Note: Sauce will thicken slightly more as it cools.)
  11. Sauce is best served lukewarm, spooned over individual slices of Steamed Cranberry Pudding.
  12. Yield: Apx. 2 cups sauce
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For other steamed pudding recipes from My Island Bistro Kitchen, click on the following links:

Traditional Classic Plum Pudding
Steamed Carrot Pudding


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Steamed Cranberry Pudding
Steamed Cranberry Pudding
Steamed Cranberry Pudding
Steamed Cranberry Pudding
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