Spicy and only sweetened with date, this holiday treat by NYC-based chef Camille Becerra is made by steaming, which then frees up valuable space in the oven during holiday preparations. Start it and forget about it.

Similar to banana bread it's a great recipe to use fruit that has gone slightly over. And another plus, it's made entirely in the food processor so it cuts on mess.


Pan prep

1 tablespoons olive oil

2 tablespoons quinoa or other seeds like flax or sesame


1 cup pitted dates

1 cup of filtered or spring water

3 pears, peeled, seeded and quartered

½ to 1-inch piece of ginger, peeled, thinly sliced into coins, cross-cut to break down fibers

1 cup olive oil

3 eggs

1 ½ cup flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 ½ teaspoon baking soda

Pinch salt

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1 teaspoon ginger

½ teaspoon turmeric

¼ teaspoon black pepper


Mud Pudding Bowl pan prep

Brush it with oil and sprinkle it with the seeds. This will help it detach easily from the bowl when done. The quinoa slightly puffs adding crunch. You can substitute with flax, sesame or any other small seed.

Steaming set up

Find a large pot big enough to fit the bowl. Place a small plate inside of the pot. Cover the bowl by using parchment and string to secure it tight or top with a plate using a napkin, parchment paper or towel in between to fill in any gaps.


In a small pot add the dates, water and only one of the prepped pears. Reserve the remaining two pears for later. Simmer on low for 15 minutes. Turn heat off and let it rest for 5 minutes.

In a food processor start by adding the sliced ginger into the food processor, process until minced. To it add the cooled date-pear mixture, process until smooth. Next add the oil, give it a whirl. Follow with the eggs, add to the processor and mix well. To it add the remaining 2 prepped pears and pulse three times. Lastly, measure out and add the dry ingredients, add to the cake mixture and pulse 6 times. Scrape down, make use all is well incorporated. Transfer to the prepped Pudding Bowl. Place bowl into the pot, cover bowl with paper or towel and place plate on top, bring to a simmer. Lower heat if necessary, place lid onto the pot and simmer for 1½ hours.

Turn off, remove lid, let it cool 10 minutes before removing from bowl. Place on a rack and cool for an additional 10 minutes. Place the rack on top of the bowl and invert the cake out.