The quest for an outrageous sponge pudding continues…

I’ve had a strong desire for sponge puddings of late; something to do with the cold weather, I think. I’ve searched the net for new recipes, but keep finding ones involving things I’m a bit scared of (like suet…) or ones that require hours of steaming on the hob. I wanted something really easy, as well as sweet. Last night I decided to throw caution to the winds and start randomly mixing treaty stuff with a bog standard sponge mixture in the hope that it might work. I’m planning to blog about each experiment to give myself the excuse to carry on indulging in this way for as long as possible. Here are the details of my first attempt… 

Ginger caramel sponge
Ginger caramel sponge
Preperation time: 10 minutes (or less if you’re really good at cracking eggs without getting the shell everywhere)
Cooking time: 45 minutes (if using ready-prepared tinned caramel)
Serves: 6-8 
40g stem ginger in syrup – drained and finely chopped
150g margarine
150g self raising flour
150g caster sugar
3 large eggs
1.3 tsp of baking powder
1 tbsp of the ginger syrup
1 397g can Carnation caramel (or any condensed milk, boiled in its can for 2 hours)
A circular ovenproof dish, 23cm in diameter
Warm the caramel in a small pan to liquefy it, then pour into the bottom of the ovenproof dish (it can alternatively be spooned in to make as even a covering as possible)
Set aside to cool a little
For the sponge
Sift the flour into a mixing bowl, then add all the other ingredients except the ginger and beat together until everything is combined
Add the chopped ginger with the final go of the whisk
Spoon the sponge mixture over the caramel, and smooth with a spatula (this will be easier if the caramel has cooled somewhat and become more solid again)
Put in the oven, just above the centre
Cook at gas mark 4 (180 ˚C, 350˚F) for around 45 minutes
Good for
When you’ve got a cold
When you haven’t got a cold
When you are cold
Enough to keep body and soul together for the foreseeable future
Enjoy with
Vanilla ice cream and a good, large glass of plonk
Overall conclusion
It went down very well, and was eagerly gobbled up by all. (Mind you, none of us is very picky…) The gingers saved it from being too sickly sweet, a trap which I think it might just (possibly) have fallen into otherwise.

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