Sunday, November 21, 2010

The Booze Riddled Christmas Pudding

I first took over making the Christmas Pudding in our family back in Oz 5 years ago. The first year I stuck religiously to my grandmothers recipe that had been created with love and much stirring many years before I was born.

The second year, I halved the amount and doubled the booze, as I am a lush and so are my family. That year my Uncle declared it better than Nan's (much to my mortification - just because it obviously was, dosnt mean it should be said so allowed, especially not in front of my Nan!) Thankfully, she agreed. Then he fell off his chair.

Now, being in London, where at the moment it is cold and miserable, boiling the pud for the 5-7 hours is a joy as it warms the house, as opposed to in Sydney when I make it mid-year and freeze! This is my first year hosting Christmas from scratch, it has always been Mum or Nan, with me helping out in the kitchen and doing booze runs to make sure we dont run out.
Not my Mistress

So, as I am hosting a couple of friends this year, my first job is to make the Pud. This year, I had the added benefit of my new kitchen pal, Mistress Fifi La Rouge L'Amore (Mistress for short). My pretty red pal. She has taken over from my old Kenwood back in Oz, an original classic who is still loved and missed - she had been my Mums for many years before finding her way into my kitchen when I moved out of home ohhhh 20 years ago now.

And so, to the recipe.

Nans Christmas Pudding (My Way)
750g mixed fruit/peel/cherries - I always add extra cherries
750ml brandy (you could use rum if you prefer)
250g butter
2 cups brown sugar
6 eggs
4 cups soft breadcrumbs
1 tablespoon self raising flour
1 teaspoon mixed spice
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
2 tablespoon marmalade

  • Soak the fruit in the alcomohol for at least a week, stirring once a day with good thoughts. I had mine soaking this time for 4 weeks. Drain the fruit, reserving the booze as you will use this to "feed" the pudding for the next few weeks.
  • Cream the eggs and brown sugar together in a large bowl. Gradually add the eggs one at a time. Add the breadcrumbs, then when combined add the soaked fruit. Finally add the flour and mixed spices.
  • Line the base of the pudding bowl with a circle of nonstick baking paper. Pour in the pudding batter, then top with another larger circle of baking paper with 2-3 “pleats” in it to allow for expansion, then put on the lid.
  • Place an old tea towel or facewasher in the bottom of a large saucepan, place the pudding on top of the towel (you don’t want in in direct contact with the base of the saucepan), fill to ¾ up the side of the bowl with boiling water. I then use al-foil to pad around the top of the saucepan before pushing the lid into place and keep the maximum of steam in. Boil for 4-5 hours. Check every so often to make sure you have plenty of water and top up if necessary. If doing in a slow cooker, cook on high for 7 hours, or low for 12.
  • Allow to cool then feed a tablespoon or 2 of the reserved booze every few days.
  • To serve, reheat in the bowl for 3 hours on high in the slow cooker, or simmer for 1-2 hours on the stove top. I like to flame it as I take it to the table as well - cause there can never be too much booze at Christmas!

Makes 1 large pudding, plus a small one or two for quality assurance.

This vid was taken last Christmas at my parents place in Australia, a small fishing village named Ulladulla 3 hours south of Sydney. The Hussyband has cameo, and his words that were cut off were mocking my Uncle and his chair falling off tendencies.


Anna Johnston said...

Ooowwhhh, I'm lovin' your Mistress Fifi La Rouge L'Amore, very pretty, may you make many, many boozie delights (or just simply have your booze on the matter).
Nice Christmas Pud recipe..., ours is all happily sitting in the freezer for the big day.

Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella said...

Thanks for sharing this recipe, I know how hard it can be to get family recipes-or at least it is in my family! :P And Fifi is quite the looker!

Nicole Croes said...

You're hysterical! Love the post... will have to try out the recipe.

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