Dutch, French, African, Malay and English historical roots combine in the varied and delicious food you can enjoy when you visit South Africa. And the decadent puddings are certainly no exception.

  1. Malva Pudding

Considering this is one of South Africa’s most iconic desserts you would not believe the different factions that exist within the pudding loving fraternity. Not only are there differing opinions as to where the name comes from, but also what goes into it. There’s even discussion as to whether it’s actually a Jan Ellis Pudding, an Asynpoeding or Vinegar Pudding, or a Telephone Pudding. However, there’s two things that all agree on, and that is that Malva Pudding is one of the most delicious puddings around. Traditionally a Winter dessert, Malva pudding is so delicious it can be eaten at any time. Imagine a sponge cake, apricot jam, butter, cream, brandy all making a sticky, fragrant, decadent, utterly delicious pudding, served hot with a topping of cream, ice cream, or custard, or without any further embellishments at all, and you’ll have some idea of the deliciousness of Malva Pudding.

  1. Cape Brandy Pudding

This pudding bears a strong resemblance to the Malva pudding in that it is a sponge cake-like dessert, sticky, fragrant, can be served hot or cold, and with or without double thick cream, custard, or ice cream. The difference is the brandy and the dates. The pudding also goes by numerous names, Cape Brandy Pudding, Brandy Pudding, Date Pudding or Tipsy Tart. The last though is incorrect in that it’s highly unlikely you could become tipsy from eating it, and the pudding is in no way a tart. It’s more of a steamed pudding…except that it’s baked in the oven. It’s a lot richer, thanks to the brandy and the dates, than the Malva pudding.

  1. Dom Pedro

The fabulously adult milkshake, Dom Pedro, was created in Blouberg in the Western Cape in South Africa. Restauranteur Danny Ferris experimented by pouring whisky over ice cream. With a few minor tweaks the Don Pedro, or Dom Pedro, was born. The basic ingredients are vanilla ice-cream, cream, and alcohol. In South Africa, the most commonly used cream liqueur in the Dom Pedro is Amarula. Blended together, poured into a glass and possibly some dark chocolate grated lightly on top, delicious doesn’t begin to describe it. Unlike the Brand Pudding mentioned earlier, having too much of this dessert will definitely make you tipsy!

  1. Peppermint Crisp Tart

There’s nothing tart about this dessert. It’s all sweetness. The Peppermint Crisp is a milk chocolate bar filled with a mass of thin mint-flavoured extruded ‘cracknel’. Invented in South Africa in the 1960s, it’s now part of South African culture. The dessert is made by layering whole Tennis biscuits, with whipped cream mixed with caramel and chunks of Peppermint Crisp. A healthy sprinkle of Peppermint Crisp chunks on top, a good seven hours in the fridge, and you have one of the most popular Christmas desserts in the country.