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Wherever you are living in the world, there is nothing more delicious on a cold winter’s night than tucking into a bowl of delicious Malva Pudding and custard. If you want to make it really authentic – order some Koo apricot jam from your local South African Shop and savour the flavours of South Africa.

Oprah brings Malva pudding to the west!

Malva Pudding has always been a much-loved sweet South African pudding. But when Art Smith, Oprah Winfrey’s personal chef served it for Christmas dinner in 2006 to the pupils of the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls in South Africa, it brought this delicious dessert to the attention of the world.

While many people may think this dessert is as old as the Great Trek, it’s interesting to discover that the earliest published reference of the Malva Pudding is found in the 1970s in Erina Bezuidenhout’s book My beste Nagereg. According to the famous South African chef and cookery expert, Ina Paarman, Malva Pudding first became famous in the 1980s when it was served at the Boschendal wine estate’s restaurant – where it gained popularity with visitors from abroad.

What’s behind the name ‘Malva’?

There are different stories behind the name Malva. The Oxford Dictionary states that it comes from the Afrikaans word Malvalekker, which means marshmallow – and could refer to the pudding’s spongy texture and sweetness. Malva is also the Afrikaans word for geranium and the theory goes that the original Malva pudding was flavoured with the leaves of the rose or lemon-scented geranium. Another theory is that the original sauce of the dessert contained Malvasia wine or that it was served with Malvasia wine.

Wherever the name comes from, it is a dessert that is meant to be enjoyed by everyone. Make your own today using this delicious Malva Pudding recipe.

Malva Pudding recipe

FOR THE PUDDING/CAKE:

  • ¾ cups Sugar
  • 2 whole Eggs
  • 1 Tablespoon Apricot Jam
  • 1 Tablespoon Butter (a Generous Tablespoon)
  • 1 teaspoon Vinegar
  • 1-¼ cup Flour
  • 1 teaspoon Baking Soda
  • ½ teaspoons Salt
  • ⅓ cups Milk

FOR THE SAUCE:

  • 7 Tablespoons Butter
  • ¾ cups Heavy Whipping Cream
  • ½ cups Sugar
  • ⅓ cups Hot Water
  • 2 teaspoons Vanilla Extract

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 350F/ 180 degrees celsius
  2. Grease an oven dish (a 7×7 square Pyrex dish works, or a 9’’ circular dish) or spray it with baking spray.
  3. Beat together the sugar and the eggs until the mixture is thick and yellow.
  4. Mix in the apricot jam.
  5. Melt the 1 Tablespoon of butter, and mix in both the butter and vinegar until combined.
  6. In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, and salt; add it to the wet mixture along with the milk and give the whole thing a good beating.
  7. Pour the mixture into the greased oven pan and bake until the pudding is golden brown and has risen (somewhere between 30-45 minutes depending on your oven and size of your pan).
  8. Meanwhile, make the sauce: melt the 7 Tablespoons of butter and mix remaining sauce ingredients together.
  9. As soon as the pudding comes out of the oven, pour the sauce over it as evenly as possible. Let it stand for a few minutes before serving, and serve it warm!

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