This low fat, fruit sponge recipe uses liquid fat and has no saturated or hydrogenated fat in it. There is less sugar than standard recipes. If you find it too sour, you can always add more sugar or sweetener at the table.
You can use a whole range of fruits as the base of the sponge, depending on which fruits you have available.
Apples or pears should be peeled and cored and cut into pieces.
Stone fruits such as plums or cherries should be washed, cut in half and the stone removed if possible.
Rhubarb (forced rhubarb is best) should be washed, the leaf and base discarded and the rest cut into 1 cm long pieces.
Gooseberries, blackcurrants, josterberries should be washed and topped and tailed as necessary.
Spices are traditionally added to many of the above fruits. Consider using the following spices:-
Apple Sponge. Add 1 tsp of Cinnamon or 6 cloves to the fruit.
Gooseberry Sponge. Add 2 tbsp of elderflower cordial to the fruit.
Add 2 pieces of chopped stem ginger in syrup or 1 tsp powdered ginger. A few chopped leaves of sweet cicely were traditionally added to rhubarb to sweeten and mellow the acidity of the rhubarb. If you have some sweet cicely available, then try it but it is optional. Sweet cicely has a slight aniseed flavour and smell.
The photos demonstrate the preparation of a rhubarb low fat, low sugar sponge pudding.
Rhubarb, gooseberries, plums, blackcurrants and josterberries produce rather a lot of fruit juice when cooked which can make the sponge soggy. To counteract this, sprinkle 1 tbsp of dry semolina onto the prepared fruit and mix well. This will help to absorb and thicken the fruit juice.
PREPARATION OF FRUIT.
Take a 20 cm ovenproof container and two thirds fill it with your prepared fruit. Add the relevant spices, sugar, or semolina.
Apples. Add 1 tsp cinnamon or 6 cloves, 3 tbsp of soft brown sugar.
Gooseberries, blackcurrants, josterberries. Add 2 tbsp of elderflower cordial if available, 3 tbsp of soft brown sugar, and 1 tbsp of dry semolina.
Plums. Add 3 tbsp of soft brown sugar, 1 tbsp of dry semolina.
Rhubarb. Add 2 pieces of chopped stem ginger in syrup or 1 tsp powdered ginger, three or so chopped leaves of sweet cicely if available, 1 tbsp of dry semolina and 3 tbsp sugar.
Once you have prepared your fruit with the relevant spices, sugar and semolina etc., and placed in the 20 cm ovenproof container, place in the oven and start heating the oven to 180 c.
PREPARATION OF SPONGE TOPPING
1 cup (150 gm) of sifted plain flour.
1 tsp baking powder.
1 tsp of vanilla extract.
3 tbsp (50 gm) of soft brown sugar.
5 tbsp (100 gm) of liquid vegetable oil.
Method. Add the baking powder to the flour and sift into a large bowl and set aside. In a jug beat 2 eggs, add the vanilla extract, soft brown sugar and liquid vegetable oil. Beat the liquids together. Add the liquid to the flour and mix by folding in the ingredients. Take the ovenproof container with the fruit mixture, out of the oven and pour the sponge mixture onto the fruit.
Place the ovenproof container back into the heated oven and bake at 180 C for 25-30 min until the sponge topping and fruit are cooked through.
Storage. Due to the low sugar content, the sponge pudding will only keep in the fridge for a few days. For use, reheat in the microwave till hot right through.