Apple Croissant Pudding

February. It's a dreary month, isn't it? Christmas is well and truly over, and all the best bargains in the sales have gone. The weather is dull and grey; not warm enough to go without a coat, yet not cold enough to layer up the gloves and hats - at least not where I live, anyway! 

There is one good thing, though - and that's the fact that it is still considered acceptable to eat warm puddings, full of butter and sugar and covered in cream. In summer this would be frowned upon - everyone would much rather have something cool and refreshing anyway - but whilst the sun evades us, I think I have found the perfect solution. 

This recipe is a mixture of the lovely Nigella Lawson's Caramel Croissant Pudding and the Apple Brioche Pudding in this month's Sainsbury's Magazine. Whilst the Domestic Goddess' recipe looks absolutely divine, after a Sunday roast dinner you don't want something too heavy. In this pudding the sweet apples counter the buttery croissant and custard mixture; a perfect match with some freshly whipped cream. 

Give it a go!

Okay, so it's not the nicest looking of puddings. But looks aren't everything!

Apple Croissant Pudding (serves 6-8)

8 eating apples (NOT cooking apples)
50g butter, plus extra for greasing
125g caster sugar
3 tbsp Calvados or Cognac
4 large eggs
175ml crème fraîche
3 medium-sized croissants, chopped (use up stale ones from the weekend)

Whipping cream or vanilla ice-cream, to serve 

1. Heat the oven to 190°C, Gas Mark 5. Peel, core and cut the apples into 2cm pieces. 

2. Melt the butter in a pan over a medium heat. Add the apples; cover a cook for about 10 minutes. 

3. Sprinkle the apples with half the sugar, turn up the heat and cook for another 8 minutes or so, stirring frequently, allowing the apples to colour slightly. Add the Calvados or Cognac and  cook for about 1 minute until the liquid evaporates. Take off the heat and leave to cool.

4. Beat the eggs with the rest of the sugar and the crème fraîche. Stir in the apples and the chopped croissants. 

5. Pour the mixture into a buttered 18-20cm cake tin* (round or square). Place the filled cake tin in a large roasting tin and fill the roasting tin with freshly boiled water so that it comes halfway up the tin. 

6. Bake for 50 minutes or until brown and firm. Leave to cool in the cake tin before serving with cream or ice-cream. 

Make sure that you cake tin has a closed base, otherwise you will lose your mixture from out the bottom! I found this out the hard way…..