Omi (our name for grandma) was famous amongst family and friends for her rum pudding. It was requested for every holiday and social occasion. I would run into people years after they had attended an event where they had the opportunity to taste this amazing dessert only for them to ask if Omi still made her pudding.
Four residences ago, before the little vegan was even a consideration, I spent a couple of days with Omi learning to make some of what I considered, her best recipes. She definitely cooked in a way that made it difficult to replicate anything perfect, for nothing was measured. While I watched I had to try my best to decide how much of any given ingredient was used, but I got it down on paper the best I could. Unfortunately, over time, through many moves the note-book I used has been misplaced.
My mom, dad, husband and I were reminiscing over the weekend and from what we can figure the last time anyone had Omi’s Rum Pudding was five years ago at Easter, though no one could eat more than a spoonful or two because it was so heavily doused in rum. My Mom says that day Omi used half the bottle. The recipe became more potent over the years, every time she made it.
Where is Omi now you ask? She is 87 with senior dementia. The little vegan and I went to visit her a couple years ago in Boston and she was in a constant mental state of a 10-year-old, grumbling to us about the fact that her mom wouldn’t let her go play outside. There was no chance of asking her about the pudding recipe or any other memories for that matter. Needless to say, this recipe was important to me because it carried with it years of wonderful memories.
This weekend my mom and I took time to recreate the pudding from memories. Mostly Mom’s memories because she had watched her make it many more times. It came out as wonderful as we all remembered and we all agreed that we love the addition of the nog. Only wish I could have Omi around to taste it!
Traditionally, Omi used lady fingers, the same cookie often used in Tiramisu but I have been unable to find them vegan so we found and used Biscoff Crisp European Cookies. Also when Omi used lady fingers she would soak the second layer of cookies at the same time she did the first ones. We tried that with these cookies and they became mush so I have recommended not adding the rum until putting the cookies on the pudding.
My Mom also has a cupboard of pudding packs left from Omi’s collection from her time living in Europe which included an almond flavored pudding which may be hard to find in the states so vanilla is my suggested use.
Since we were using a milk alternative anyway rather than the milk Omi would have used, we opted for soy nog accompanied with Spiced rum. You could use the milk alternative and rum of your choice.
The rum is not cooked so this pudding does contain alcohol!
This recipe serves 8. Omi always doubled it.
1 package of your favorite vegan pudding mix* (we used Oetkers almond)
Milk alternative according to directions on package (we used two cups Soy Nog)
Approximately 5 shots of rum (we used spiced)
1 10.14 oz pack of Soyatoo Soy Whip box (use your favorite vegan whipped cream)
Crisp European Cookies (Measure how many will fit on bottom of bowl and double, we used 16)
chocolate for grading/shaving
*Our pudding mix called for sugar. We cut the amount in half since the nog is already sweetened.
Make pudding according to package, place parchment paper over the top so it doesn’t get a skin and cool.
Once pudding is cool make soya whip according to package. Mix one-third of whipped cream and one shot of rum in with pudding. Set aside.
In serving bowl (one with a flat bottom) lay cookies out to cover. Using approximately two shots of rum cover cookies making sure cookies are completely covered. Let sit for a few minutes to soak in.
Cover cookies with half of pudding. On top of pudding put half of remaining whipped cream and grate chocolate over top for a light dusting.
Place remaining cookies on top. Carefully pour two more shots of rum over the cookies so the are evenly covered. Let sit for a few minutes.
Cover top of cookies with the rest of pudding. Scoop whipped cream over top and shave chocolate over the top. We grated the chocolate but next time I will definitely shave.
Omi always made her pudding the night before because she thought it was better that way. This time as soon as the pudding was finished I started taking pictures and was getting complaints because my dad wanted to eat it. It was pretty tasty within a half hour of making it so I am not sure waiting is a necessity!