This section consists of a discussion about puddings and desserts.
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Why not browse through the recipes for some scrumptious treats from the South African Malva pudding , to the English Yorkshire pudding.
Puddings, puddings, puddings and desserts, desserts, desserts- which is which?
Are desserts always pudding? And are puddings always desserts?
This is something I have difficulty getting my mind around!
The North American usage of pudding is "a dessert with a soft or creamy consistency".
The English usage varies from "A cooked sweet dish served after the main course of a meal," OR "the dessert course of the meal as in 'what's for pudding?'" Plus some other usages which we won't go into right now!
Surely, you wouldn't refer to a dish of fresh fruit served for dessert as a pudding... According to the British usage you could do so!
In this sense the British usage of pudding has replaced their usage of "what's for afters?" or alternatively "what's for dessert?" Taking this to its ultimate conclusion, you could even refer to cheese and biscuits served after a meal as pudding!
The next question is are all puddings dessert? This has to be answered with a great big NO!
For instance there's the worldwide favourite, Yorkshire pudding, which originated in the county of Yorkshire, England. This is definitely not a dessert, except (and being the English, there has to be an exception) when the pudding is served cold with jam after a meal. Then of course it classifies as a desert!
There are a range of puddings which are definitely not desserts!
Consider the very old black puddings which consist of pig's blood mixed with oatmeal and spices and stuffed into an intestine.
This is boiled and then fried for breakfast! We also have the ubiquitous steak and kidney pudding which is not, and never will be, a dessert!
There are also puddings with a soft or creamy consistency which are definitely not desserts. For instance there's the German "Milchreis" which is basically a milky rice pudding which is eaten as a main course.
Then there's the South African "Melkkos" or "milk food" which is a type of pasta boiled in milk on top of the stove. This pudding is not eaten as a dessert but as a main course. This particular dish is made in various countries, and lo and behold, it is eaten as a dessert in some of them.
My favorite is...The strange plum pudding Strange because in spite of it's name it contains no plums. [Although, just to be different I have included a plum pudding, aka plum duff, which DOES contain plums. ] There are two possible explanations for this anomaly. First, that raisins and currants used to be called plums. Second, raisins and currants replaced the original plums but the pudding kept its name.
Anyway, in addition to their roasts and two boiled veg, the English settlers brought, their steamed, boiled and baked puddings to South Africa. The Dutch also brought their puddings and desserts!
Due, in part to this, puddings have also become a favourite
South African dessert.
This is why I've included a section on English Puddings.
For those who think it strange that a South African should feel qualified to write about English Puddings I shall explain...
My mother and father both came from Yorkshire. On Sundays we always had Yorkshire pudding with the roast.
A delicious traditional English pudding- steamed, boiled or baked- would follow for dessert
As for Christmas... Well!!!