Apple hat, named for its shape when unmolded, is among the especially plentiful and esteemed family of English apple puddings.
- 2 cups flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- Pinch salt
- 1 cup shredded fresh beef suet (Suet is the solid white fat found around the kidneys and loins to lend richness to pastries.)
- 3 large tart apples, such as Granny Smith
- 1/4 cup raisins
- 1/2 cup light brown sugar
- Pinch ground cloves
- Pinch ground cinnamon
- Pinch ground ginger
- Juice of 1/2 lemon
- 4 tablespoons butter, cut into small pieces
- 1 tablespoons clotted cream or whipped cream (optional)
Sift the flour, baking powder and salt together into a large bowl. Add the suet and, with a wooden spoon, stir in just enough cold water (about 1/2 cup) to hold dough together. Shape about a third of the dough into a ball, then shape the remaining dough into a larger ball. Wrap both balls of dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
Peel, core and slice the apples, then place in a large bowl and toss well with the raisins, brown sugar, cloves, cinnamon, ginger and lemon juice. Grease a 5-cup ovenproof bowl or pudding basin. On a lightly floured work surface, roll out the larger ball into a 12-inch round, then ease into the bowl, pressing to fit snugly. Spoon in the apple filling and dot with the butter.
On a floured work surface, roll out the remaining dough into a 7-inch round and place on top of the filling. Dampen the edges with water and pinch the crust together with your fingers to seal. Cover loosely with a 9-inch piece of aluminum foil (allowing room for the pudding to expand) and tie in place with kitchen string.
Place the bowl in a large pot. Add enough water to come halfway up the side of the bowl. Cover and simmer over medium heat for 3 hours. Remove the bowl, cool slightly, then remove the foil. Invert the pudding onto a platter. Serve warm in individual bowls with additional brown sugar and cream, if desired.
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Recipe reprinted by permission of World Publication, LLC. All rights reserved.
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