There's something about fresh pineapple that is especially welcome during the winter months. I love the bracing acidity and tartness and the beaming bright shock of yellow. This dessert ties all these threads together in a pudding cake, which is the kind of dessert that separates into a layer of cake and a little layer of sauce at the bottom. Coconut and lemon also tag along for more texture and taste, a slight nod to the tropics. I saute the pineapple in a little bit of butter to caramelize and expand the flavor. Otherwise, it's a pretty simple process to produce and it's good served warm or at room temperature.
- If your pineapple is super tart, sprinkle lightly with sugar as you saute in butter.
- For the bain marie, I used two smaller roasting pans instead of one large one, which makes it much easier to manage when removing from the oven.
- The water for the bain marie should be hot. If your tap water isn't hot enough, when you begin your preparation for this dessert, bring a pot of water to a simmer, take off the heat, cover and set aside until you're ready to bake.
- I think this would also be good with fresh berries in the bottom of the ramekin in place of the sauteed pineapple.
Pineapple Coconut Pudding Cakes
1 C fresh pineapple
1/4 oz (1/2 T) butter
3/4 C sugar, divided
1/3 C flour
1/4 t salt
1 C milk
1/3 C sweetened shredded coconut
5 T lemon juice
zest of 1/2 lemon
3 eggs, separated
2 oz (4 T) butter, melted
powdered sugar for dusting
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease six 6-oz ramekins.
Chop the pineapple into bite-sized pieces and place in a pan with the butter. Saute over medium heat for about 5 - 7 minutes or until the fruit begins to caramelize. Distribute the pineapple equally among the six ramekins.
Whisk all but 2 tablespoons of sugar with the flour and salt.
In another bowl, whisk the milk, coconut, lemon juice, zest and egg yolks until thoroughly combined. Blend in the melted butter. Add the flour mixture and whisk until smooth. The batter will be very thin and may look slightly curdled.
Beat the egg whites with the remaining 2 tablespoons of sugar until stiff glossy peaks form. Gently fold the egg whites into the coconut lemon mixture one-third at a time. Pour the batter into the prepared ramekins and place them in a large roasting pan or two smaller roasting pans. Pour in enough hot water to reach halfway up the sides of the ramekins.
Bake the pudding cakes for about 25 minutes or until they are puffed up but firm to the touch and slightly golden on top. Carefully remove from oven and transfer ramekins to a wire rack.
Dust with powdered sugar and serve warm or at room temperature.