“Fire a top, fire a bottom and hallelujah inna di middle”. I’m sure you have heard that before and you know exactly what I’m talking about. It is the traditional method used to make one of Jamaica’s favorite pastries, sweet potato pudding, using a coal fire above and below the pudding to enable a quick and thorough cooking. I used to look forward to my granny’s sweet potato pudding after church, or my mother’s on a Sunday evening. My mother makes it with that sweet jelly layer on top that very few have been able to duplicate (patent pending ;)).
Many of us may not have the resources needed to make sweet potato pudding using the traditional technique but I’ll share with you the method I use. Sweet potato pudding with a modern twist, while maintaining that rich flavor.
Ingredients (this makes one 9 in pudding)
1 lb Sweet Potato (grated)
1/2 lb Flour
1/2 lb Cornmeal
1/2 lb Sugar
1 Sachet Maggie coconut milk (or one coconut – preferred)
2 1/2 ml (1/2 teaspoon) Vanilla
1/2 teaspoon Cinnamon powder or extract
1/2 teaspoon grated Ginger
1/2 teaspoon Chiffon butter
A “toops” of salt
Peel and grate the sweet potato.
Add the flour, cornmeal and sugar then mix. Mix the sachet of coconut milk slowly by adding a small volume of water to make a thick cream then adding increasing volumes of water up to about 250 ml (a little over a cup full). Add 2 pinches of salt (none if you are hypertensive), add the grated ginger, cinnamon, vanilla and about 1/3 of a grated nutmeg. Add the butter (melted) and mix well. Some persons add rum and or raisins to their pudding, you may if you chose. Allow the ingredients to get to know each other for about 10-15 minutes.
Pour into a 9″ baking tin and bake at 375 degrees Fahrenheit (190 degrees Celsius) for 1 hour 45 minutes (give or take). I use a toaster oven because i’m just a poor boy (you may purchase 1 at Mega Mart for less than 5k) but a gas stove or electric stove works just as well.
Allow it to cool for about 1 1/2 hours. It smells so good! Enjoy and share with friends and family.
Feel free to let me know how yours turned out.
– Aldeam Facey