Recipe for Christmas Pudding
Prep time: 1 hour pus 10 hours soaking time
Cook time: 3 ½ hours
1 cup sultanas
1 cup pitted prunes (chopped roughly)
1 1/2 cup currants
1 cup cranberries
¾ cup grated orange zest
1 cup sugar (brown or light muscovado)
250 g butter (softened)
1 cup flour (plain or spelt)
1/2 loaf of fresh bready (broken up into 2 cups full of bread crumbs)
1 tsp of nutmeg
2 tsp mixed spice
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
½ tsp bi carb soda
To serve with:
cranberries or cherries
Custard, cream, brandy anglaise or crème fraiche
You will need:
- Soak the dried fruits and zest in the brandy in a medium bowl and cover with plastic wrap overnight or for a minimum of 10 hours.
- In an electric stand mixer beat the butter with the sugar until the colour turns pale and the mixture is fluffy (Increase from a low to a medium speed)
- Add the eggs into the sugared butter one by one and continue beating until combined (medium low speed).
- Remove the bowl from the stand mixer and using a spatula or large wooden spoon fold in the brandy soaked fruit mixture. Add the flour, spices, bicarb soda + apple cider vinegar (Pour the cider vinegar onto the bicarb soda so that it fizzes up) then add the breadcrumbs and fold until well combined.
- Prepare your pudding basin by brushing the base and walls of the inside with a layer of olive oil. Use a large pudding basin that can serve approximately 8 people (otherwise split the mixture between small pudding basins).
- Get some baking paper and place the basin on to the paper and use a pencil to mark the size of the base circle. Using some scissors cut the circle out and place into the inside base of the pudding basin.
- Pour in the pudding mixture using a spatula to get all the mixture out and pat it down nicely. Leave at least 2 cm from the top.
- Meanwhile prepare a large wide pot that the basin can sit in. Fill the large pot with boiling water or bring some water to the boil. Make sure it’s about 1/3 full of water.
- To wrap and cover the pudding, cover the pudding basin with a large square of baking paper and foil (using some olive oil or butter to stick the two together, and place foil side up). Leave enough of the foil and paper to cover the edges where the dent of the basin is. Use a strong string to tie around the dented edge of the basin and tie it together. Then use another string to create a handle.
- Lower the basin down carefully into the hot water using the string handle. Cover with a lid. Make sure the heat is strong enough so there is a consistent simmer. Also make sure to keep refilling the pot with more water every now and then as the water reduces.
- Cook the pudding for approximately 3 and a half hours.
- Using the string handle remove the pudding basin and onto a surface. Check that the pudding is completely cooked by inserting a wooden skewer. If it’s clean then the pudding is cooked.
- Remove all the baking paper and foil allowing the pudding to cool then using a knife gently run it around the edge of the pudding. Turn it upside down and the pudding will come out.
- Place onto a flat plate and cover with a cotton or linen kitchen towel. It can stay like this overnight otherwise you can make this pudding a week or more in advance just make sure to keep in plastic wrapping, in a container and in the fridge.
- Serve with cranberries, cherries, fresh cream or any of the suggested servings above!
- To make the fresh breadcrumbs slice of the bread crust and tear the bread into smaller pieces. Place them into a food processor and process until light, fluffy and evenly broken up.