Every year Mum has made Christmas pudding. People laugh at the idea of fruit cake. Not in our house. This is the next step up from fruit cake.It's a serious process that usually begins in September. However this year we are doing the alternative which only takes a week. There's a fermenting process as the fruit is soaked in brandy- or in our case sherry.
So this year I am documenting this process. This is the real deal, so you need an actual scale - no cups here. If nothing else, this is a taste of my childhood. Also about the bright yellow bowl. We've had it since I can remember and we make it in this every year. Not the most aesthetically pleasing, but it's tradition.
- 250g butter
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon grated orange rind
- 1 tablespoon grated lemon rind
- 4 eggs
- 250g dates
- 250g raisins
- 250g sultanas
- 1 small apple
- 1 small carrot
- 125g mixed peel
- 2 cups fresh bread crumbs
- 1 1/2 c plain flour
- pinch salt
- 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon mixed spice
- 1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
- 3 tablespoons of brandy or sherry depending on your taste
Day 1 : Measure out all the dry fruit, mix in bowl, add brandy/sherry. Let this soak overnight.
Day 2: Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add orange and lemon rinds. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Peel apple and carrot. Stir fruit mixture, apple, carrot, and breadcrumbs into butter mixture. Sift dry ingredients and fold into mixture.
To steam: pour mixture into well greased ceramic bowl (one that can handle heat), cover with foil, secure with string. Steam on high for 4 hours. (Keep checking and adding water to maintain a constant boil.) Re-steam for 2 hours on Christmas day and serve with custard or whipped cream. (custard is very british, I can post a recipe for that soon)