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Marmalade Pudding Cake

by . Featured in KITCHEN
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Introduction

Now, this is a beauty. I don't mean flash or fancy - rather the opposite; there is something austerely handsome about its appearance, and yet gorgeously warming about its taste. But then, this laid-back Sunday-lunch pudding is what kitchen food is all about. I'm happy to leave the picture-perfect plate-decoration dessert to the professional chef and patissier. When I want to eat one, I'll go to a restaurant. That way, everyone's happy.

I don't want to be too prescriptive about this marmalade pudding cake - which has the surprisingly light texture of a steamed sponge - as it doesn't seem in the spirit of things. I love the bitter edge of a thick-shred, dark marmalade and so tend to go for a proper, glamorously auburn, tawny one here; if this is too full-on for you, choose a fine-shred marmalade, instead.

Now, this is a beauty. I don't mean flash or fancy - rather the opposite; there is something austerely handsome about its appearance, and yet gorgeously warming about its taste. But then, this laid-back Sunday-lunch pudding is what kitchen food is all about. I'm happy to leave the picture-perfect plate-decoration dessert to the professional chef and patissier. When I want to eat one, I'll go to a restaurant. That way, everyone's happy.

I don't want to be too prescriptive about this marmalade pudding cake - which has the surprisingly light texture of a steamed sponge - as it doesn't seem in the spirit of things. I love the bitter edge of a thick-shred, dark marmalade and so tend to go for a proper, glamorously auburn, tawny one here; if this is too full-on for you, choose a fine-shred marmalade, instead.

Marmalade Pudding Cake
Photo by Lis Parsons

Ingredients

Serves: 6-8

Metric Cups
  • 250 grams soft unsalted butter (plus some for greasing)
  • 75 grams caster sugar
  • 75 grams light brown muscovado sugar
  • 225 grams marmalade (75g of which for the glaze)
  • 225 grams plain flour
  • ½ teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 4 large eggs
  • zest and juice of 1 orange ( reserve juice of ½ orange for glaze)
  • 2 sticks soft unsalted butter (plus some for greasing)
  • ⅓ cup superfine sugar
  • ⅓ cup light brown sugar
  • ⅔ cup marmalade (75g of which for the glaze)
  • 1½ cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 4 large eggs
  • zest and juice of 1 orange ( reserve juice of ½ orange for glaze)

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas mark 4/350°F and butter a 24cm / 8inch square ovenproof dish. Put the 75g marmalade and juice of ½ orange into a small pan and set aside to make a glaze later.
  2. Put all the other ingredients for the pudding batter into a food processor, process them and then pour and scrape the batter into the buttered dish, smoothing the top. If you’re not using a processor, cream the butter and both sugars by hand or in a freestanding mixer, beat in the marmalade followed by the dry ingredients, then the eggs and finally the orange zest and juice.
  3. Put in the oven and cook for about 40 minutes – though give a first check after ½ hour – by which time the sponge mixture will have risen and a cake tester will come out cleanish. Remove from the oven and leave in the dish.
  4. Warm the glaze mixture in the pan until melted together, then paint the top of the sponge, letting the chunks or slivers of peel be your sole, unglinting decoration on top of the mutely gleaming pudding-cake. Know that this sponge will keep its orange-scented warmth for quite a while once out of the oven, so you could make it before you sit down for the main course.
  5. Use a large spoon or cake slice (or both) to serve, and put a jug of custard or cream on the table to eat with.
  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas mark 4/350°F and butter a 24cm / 8inch square ovenproof dish. Put the 75g marmalade and juice of ½ orange into a small pan and set aside to make a glaze later.
  2. Put all the other ingredients for the pudding batter into a food processor, process them and then pour and scrape the batter into the buttered dish, smoothing the top. If you’re not using a processor, cream the butter and both sugars by hand or in a freestanding mixer, beat in the marmalade followed by the dry ingredients, then the eggs and finally the orange zest and juice.
  3. Put in the oven and cook for about 40 minutes – though give a first check after ½ hour – by which time the sponge mixture will have risen and a cake tester will come out cleanish. Remove from the oven and leave in the dish.
  4. Warm the glaze mixture in the pan until melted together, then paint the top of the sponge, letting the chunks or slivers of peel be your sole, unglinting decoration on top of the mutely gleaming pudding-cake. Know that this sponge will keep its orange-scented warmth for quite a while once out of the oven, so you could make it before you sit down for the main course.
  5. Use a large spoon or cake slice (or both) to serve, and put a jug of custard or cream on the table to eat with.

Tell us what you think

What 9 Others have said

  • Exchange the marmalade for raspberry jam for the glaze, they go well together.

    Posted by Nikkichan on 4th May 2016
  • This is amazing and could not be easier. Just like a steamed pudding but much less hassle. Definitely one for the repertoire. My husband adored it. I make lots of Nigella dishes and they never fail. Thank you!

    Posted by romytennis on 1st September 2015
  • Perfect New Year weekend treat- the orange and marmalade is the calm after a storm of overindulgence over Christmas. Also just the stuff for a slightly dull headed cook post New Year's Eve- uncomplicated, practically fail proof.

    Posted by Mrs. Smits on 4th January 2015
  • Made this yesterday and I was surprised at just how deliciously light it is! Not overpoweringly orangey either (I'm not a big marmalade fan). Like another reviewer I found I had to bake it for longer - about 55 minutes - with foil on top for the last 20 minutes or so. Will definitely make this again!

    Posted by MrsMojito on 12th October 2014
  • So quick and easy. I ran out of marmalade so used Chunky Ginger Jam instead. I've also used home made Plum Jam too. Always light, moist and very tasty.

    Posted by Ali-Baba on 7th April 2014
  • I made this today to take across as a Christmas gift for a family that had invited me to lunch. It was a HUGE success - so good, no one missed cream or custard with it. Thanks for such an easy and delicious recipe!

    Posted by Moneesha Sharma on 18th December 2013
  • Never liked marmalade but dont let that stop you from making this gorgeous cake!! Simple and quick to make whether you use an electric whisk which i did or a food processor. It had a subtle orange flavour with an almost caramel buttery flavour in the sponge itself. Did take about 45-50 minutes and in a ceramic dish was a little darker around the outsides but not a big deal.

    Posted by beereed on 16th November 2013
  • Although not a fan of marmalade my hubby is and he thought this was absolutely delicious - made a family sized pudding so we ate it for a few nights. Great with big splash of whipped cream and even I, as a non-marmalade fan enjoyed it.

    Posted by Saucy on 29th May 2013
  • This fantastic! As Nigella says, it is not at all complicated, in fact it is mainly done in the food processor, but it does have a subtly unusual flavour and the glaze is very simple and is a nice touch. I didn't have fresh orange, so used a couple more large tbs of marmalade and it worked fine. I also left in the oven for longer, covered up, as it was not cooked in the middle but browning on the edge. 5 out of 5 stars, everyone was very complimentary!!

    Posted by Nochef on 23rd March 2012
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