Kelly’s Black Pudding Fruit Cake with Spiced Poached Pear and Blue Cheese
Lilly Lenahan – Belleek Castle Hotel
450g dried figs, apricots and chopped dates (soaked in 300ml strong black tea overnight)
200g Kelly’s Black Pudding
225g plain flour
150g softened butter
150g dark muscovado sugar
4 medium eggs
1tbsp dark treacle
½ teasp freshly ground nutmeg
1tsp baking powder
Spiced poached pear
750g caster sugar
zest and juice of 1 lemon
4 ripe pears
Blue cheese foam
5-10g blue cheese
½ teasp soy lecithin
Blue cheese to serve with it.
Preheat the oven to 160oC. Line an 8” cake tin with greaseproof paper or baking parchment. Place the butter and sugar in a large baking bowl. Whisk the butter into the sugar until light and smooth. Beat one egg into the creamed butter, then beat in a quarter of the flour. Repeat until all the eggs and flour are used up. Add the treacle, brandy and nutmeg to the cake mixture and stir gently. Add the baking powder.
Drain the dried fruits and crumble in the black pudding making sure it is fully incorporated into the fruit mix. Add the walnuts. Stir well, add to the cake mixture, stirring gently until all the fruit and pudding mix is incorporated into the mixture. Stir gently so as not to ‘flatten’ the cake mixture. Spoon into the prepared cake tin. Bake in preheated oven for 1 ½ to 2 hours or until dark golden brown.
For the poached pear
Firm pears that are slightly under ripe are best because they hold their shape.
Place all ingredients except pears into a large pot. Half fill with water and bring to the boil. Simmer for 10 minutes to infuse then drop in pears, cover and gently poach for about 30 minutes until soft. Turn off the heat and set aside. The pears can be poached up to 2 days ahead and kept in the poaching syrup in the fridge.
For the blue cheese foam
Add 5-10g blue cheese to 160ml milk. Warm in a pan until the milk takes on the taste of the cheese. Strain the cheese out. Add half a teaspoon of soy lecithin to the milk. Blast this with a hand mixer until a sufficient foam appears.
Serve the fruit pudding, cheese and pear at room temperature.
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