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Thursday, June 24, 2021

Church kitchen’s kindness: proof’s in the pudding

This year’s Christmas pudding may look a little different, but then this year has been a year like no other, says Adamstown Pudding Kitchen’s Dianne Richter.

After COVID restrictions meant closing its doors to its regular 30 to 40 volunteers, Adamstown Uniting Church, or “Pudding Church” as it is affectionately known, was forced to adapt.

The church that doubles as a kitchen selling award-winning puddings was unable to produce its usual 10,000 kilograms of puddings this year.

Instead they have been selling last year’s puddings, jams and pickles, sauces and new pudding chocolates in a bid to maintain its annual fundraising efforts.

Church office administrator Dianne Richter says the products will still live up to the group’s reputation.

“The puddings are made to the traditional recipe, they are all home-made, and they are still very moist,” she said.

“This year, if anything, the flavor is better because it has had a chance to mature.”

Despite 2020’s many changes, Ms Richter says the secret to the success of Adamstown Pudding Kitchen is still the same.

“It’s what people have grown up with,” she said.

“It’s about community. It’s everyone working together [and] volunteering their time to produce home-made puddings that are made with a lot of love.

“What you can taste in the puddings is the love that’s gone into them.”

Ms Richter, who has been working at the church for nine years, says the group’s origins lie in an act of gratefulness.

“It began in 1971 when one of the church parishioners, Dawn Hodges, was so happy that her brother had returned safely from the Vietnam War that she baked some puddings for the church to sell to raise some much-needed funds,” she said.

After 49 years, proceeds from the sale of the puddings now support both local and international ventures.

“We’ve supported a range of projects,” Ms Richter said.

“From a church arts program supporting upcoming local musicians, to a safe space for Indigenous teens in regional areas to clean water projects overseas.”

Adamstown Pudding Kitchen is open from 10am to 2pm, Monday to Saturday until sold out.

Although traditionally the sale of puddings lasted until Christmas Eve, Ms Richter warns this year it could be much sooner.

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