Here’s a recipe that tends to confuse my friends who grew up with Bill Cosby’s ads for Jell-O pudding. It’s not like what most of us in the US think of as a pudding at all, but that’s what it’s called nonetheless. A quick trip to Google reveals that this is far from the only recipe for a cake-type blueberry pudding, but most of them look more elaborate than Grandma’s version. I’m not too surprised—this is a Pennsylvania Dutch recipe if ever there was one, and we’re good at food that’s good, filling, and really quite simple.
Each summer, Gma would issue an invitation to come over for either blueberry or cherry pudding for dinner one night. (I’d love to make a cherry pudding as well, but have had trouble finding sour cherries, which makes that difficult.) We’d pile into the car and head over for this annual treat. There are several recipes for either cherry or blueberry pudding in her recipe box, but I went with the one that says, “best one” in the corner.
This is a dish best served fresh out of the oven. It’s easy to prepare (I did it in a little more than an hour, including baking time). I think I left it in a little too long—I stuck a cake tester in it after the prescribed 40 minutes and it came out slightly undone, so I put it back for a few more minutes. (The recipe, as you see, does not say anything about testing to see if it’s done, so that may have been my first mistake.) On its own, a few extra minutes may have been okay, but since I took it over to a potluck with some friends, it went in the Pyrex Portables with a hot pack to try to preserve its fresh-out-of-the-oven goodness. It was in there for a while, so it’s quite possible that it was exposed to too much heat for too long. In any case, this attempt was a bit dry, so if I do another one this summer, I may have a better idea of what does and doesn’t work. In the meantime, I’d beware of too much heat for too long if you give this one a whirl.
We serve this pudding by sprinkling sugar over it and then pouring milk on top. Some of us would break up the cake to enable the milk to soak in all at once, and some would go one bite at a time. You’ll know you’ve done it right if you end up with blue milk at the end that’s reminiscent of—but so much better than!—the milk left after a bowl of Boo-Berry cereal.
1 c. butter
1 c. sugar
1 t. soda
1 c. sour milk (I used buttermilk)
4 c. flour
pinch of salt
1.5 pints of blueberries or cherries
Cream butter and sugar together. Add eggs. Stir soda in milk and add alternately with the flour. Bake in 350 oven about 40 minutes.