My immediate thought upon receiving my KitchenAid 4-Piece Nesting Casserole Set: I need to make a spoon dessert in here. Pronto. Something about the combination of ceramic bowls and spoon desserts gives me a great sense of hominess and nostalgia. I pondered a while which dessert I would make, but I wasn’t in the mood for cobblers, nor was I in the mood for bread pudding.
Suddenly it occurred to me: Citrus Delicious Pudding! I feel so weird calling it a pudding since it’s more like a kind of cake that gradually turns into a melty pudding-like texture at the bottom. Typically when I make this insanely tangy Australian dessert I use lemon, which I have a well documented love for. This time, I thought I’d make it a little different by using calamansi.
As far as I know, calamansi is native to the Philippines. For my non-local readers, imagine a really small green citrus that’s like a combination of lemon and lime in one. You can use it for pretty much anything you use a lemon for—like dips and marinades, or as a last touch to add tang to a dish. Personally, calamansi is my go-to citrus for juices because I think it tastes better than orange or lemon in that form, but I very seldom use it for baking. I ought to change that!
This dessert has a thin layer of sponge hiding that mouth-puckering calamansi pudding underneath. It’s a really simple dessert to make, though it’s definitely something that’s geared more towards serious citrus lovers, because this is a SERIOUS citrus dessert you guys. And that’s what makes it sooooo good.
The calamansi gives a light yellowish hue to this dessert that contrasts really well with my KitchenAid casserole. These ceramic casseroles are beautiful. There’s no denying that. They’re made of non-porous vitrified porcelain that’s been put through an ultra-high heat firing process, creating that smooth glass-like surface. It can withstand everyday usage in temperatures both hot (the oven) and cold (the freezer), and the great part is, whatever you’ve cooked up using this ceramic bakeware, it’s pretty enough to bring straight to the table. And that’s exactly what I did!
Another useful tool I love from KitchenAid is their 7-Speed Hand mixer, which makes whipping egg whites an absolute breeze! When you’ve got all these things in your kitchen, you’d always be in the mood to whip something up. I can assure you!
Right out of the oven the custard pudding will look a little souffled, but it sinks back down quickly. (This is not a souffle after all haha!) My favourite part of this whole custard are those caramelized sides. The contrast between sweet and tangy is most pronounced when you eat that part. But let’s face it, if you’re a citrus lover– and by that I mean your citrus dessert of preference is one that makes you pucker your mouth in its tanginess, like me– anywhere you eat out of this pudding will be perfection.
Calamansi Custard Pudding
- 3 tablespoons 42 grams butter, melted
- ¾ cup 165 grams superfine sugar
- 1 teaspoon finely grated calamansi or lemon rind*
- 2 eggs, separated
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ⅓ cup 80mL fresh calamansi juice (or use lemon)
- 1 cup 250mL milk
- Whipped cream or powdered sugar, to serve (optional)
- 1. Preheat oven to 160ºC (320ºF). Lightly grease your KitchenAid 1.4-litre ceramic dish with butter (or use a 1-litre baking dish).** Place egg whites in a medium bowl.
- 2. Place the butter and sugar in the bowl of your KitchenAid stand mixer with paddle attachment (or use a hand mixer) and beat for 8 to 10 minutes or until light and combined. Scrape the sides of the bowl as necessary.
- 3. Once butter and sugar mixture is ready, add the egg yolks and calamansi/lemon rind. Beat until smooth and creamy. Add the flour and baking powder into the mixture and beat to combine.
- 4. Add the calamansi juice and milk, and beat until smooth. The mixture will be fairly watery. Detach the bowl from your KitchenAid mixer and set aside for a moment.
- 5. Use the KitchenAid hand mixer to beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form. Using a spatula, gently fold the first 1/3 of the beaten egg whites into the pudding mixture until just combined. Add in the rest of the egg whites, making sure not to mix too vigorously to keep the mixture light and airy. (Make sure most of the egg whites are incorporated, but it's okay if there are bits of egg whites left.)
- 6. Pour into prepared KitchenAid ceramic casserole and bake for 40 minutes or until the top is golden. The custard will have risen and slightly souffled fresh out of the oven but sink back after a while. You can serve this warm or cold, with cream or just a light dusting of confectioner's sugar. (Or just serve it plain, it'll still make a lip-puckering statement!)
** If you want a thicker custard and a more obvious souffle rise, use a 1-litre dish that's smaller in size but with higher sides. I used the KitchenAid 1.4-litre dish which is a little bigger and wider than was needed, so my pudding is a little flatter and thinner. Whatever dish you decide to use, the delicious taste won't change either way! Adapted from Dona Hay Magazine