Steamed Figgy Pudding
- Grease a steamed pudding mold or a 1-1/2-quart casserole; set aside. In a medium bowl combine figs, dried fruit bits, and dried cranberries. Stir in orange peel, orange juice, and rum; set aside.
- In a small bowl stir together flour, apple pie spice, baking powder, salt, and baking soda; set aside. In a large mixing bowl, beat butter with an electric mixer on medium to high speed for 30 seconds. Add brown sugar; beat until combined. Beat in eggs and vanilla until combined. Beat in flour mixture. Use a wooden spoon to stir in bread crumbs and fruit mixture. Spoon batter into prepared pudding mold; cover tightly with greased foil.
- Place pudding mold on a rack in a deep kettle. Add boiling water to kettle to a depth of about 1 inch. Cover and bring to a gentle boil. Steam about 1-1/2 hours or until a long wooden pick or skewer inserted in center of pudding comes out clean. Add more boiling water to kettle, as necessary.
- Remove pudding mold from kettle. Remove foil. Cool on a wire rack for 30 minutes. Loosen edge of pudding from sides of mold; invert pudding onto a serving plate. Brush with honey. Garnish with persimmon strips. Serve with Bourbon Custard Sauce. Makes 10 servings.
From the Test Kitchen
Prepare as directed. Place inverted pudding in airtight container; cover. Store in the refrigerator overnight. Let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes and serve as directed.
Bourbon Custard Sauce
- In a medium saucepan whisk yolks until combined. Whisk in sugar and salt; set aside. In a small saucepan heat half-and-half over medium heat just until tiny bubbles form around the edge. Slowly stir the hot half-and-half into the egg yolk mixture. Cook and stir with a wooden spoon over medium heat just until the mixture thickens enough to coat the back of a clean metal spoon. Remove from heat. Stir in bourbon, if desired, and vanilla. Quickly cool mixture by placing saucepan in a large bowl of ice water for 1 to 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Transfer sauce to a bowl; cover the surface with plastic wrap. Chill at least 2 hours.