Steamed apple-date pudding

Yield: 12 servings

Measure Ingredient
1 pack Dates,pitted(8oz)
½ cup Apple cider
¾ cup Sugar
½ cup Butter or margarine,softened
4 \N Eggs
2 cups Flour,all-purpose
2 teaspoons Baking powder
4 \N Egg yolks
⅓ cup Sugar
⅛ teaspoon Salt
½ teaspoon Cinnamon,ground
¼ teaspoon Cloves,ground
1 \N Apple,peeled,large
¾ cup Walnuts
\N \N Red candied cherries
\N \N Green candies cherries
2 cups Milk
1 teaspoon Vanilla extract

CUSTARD SAUCE

1. Heavily grease deep 2½-quart heat-safe bowl. Cut foil 1 inch large than top of bowl to use as cover. Grease 1 side of foil well; set aside.

2. In blender at medium speed or in food processor with knife blade attached, blend dates and apple juice until smooth; set aside. 4. In large bowl, with mixer at low speed, beat sugar and butter or margarine just until blended. Increase speed to high; beat until light and fluffy. Add eggs, next 5 ingredients, and date mixture; beat at low speed until blended. Increase speed to medium; beat 1 minute, occasionally scraping bowl with rubber spatula. With rubber spatula, gently fold in chopped apple and walnuts. Spoon pudding mixture into prepared bowl. Cover bowl with foil, greased side down, tying tightly with string.

4. Set bowl on rack in 8-12 quart saucepan. Pour in water to come halfway up side of bowl, nut touching foil. Over high heat, heat to boiling. Reduce heat to low; cover and simmer 2 ½ to 3 hours, until skewer inserted through foil into center of pudding comes out clean. 5. About 30 minutes before pudding is done, prepare Custard Sauce. 6. When pudding is done, cool in bowl on wire rack 10 minutes; loosen pudding with metal spatula and invert into warm platter. Garnish pudding with red and green candied cherries. Serve pudding warm with warm sauce.

*** CUSTARD SAUCE ***

1. In heavy 2-quart saucepan over low heat, or in double boiler over hot, not boiling, water, with wire whisk, beat egg yolks, sugar, and salt. Gradually stir in milk and cook, stirring constantly, until mixture thickens and coats the back of a spoon, about 25 minutes.

Stir in vanilla extract.

2. Serve sauce warm or cold over apple pie, fruitcake, cut-up fruit, or ice cream.

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