Traditional Christmas Pudding
This recipe makes one large pudding in a 2 pint (1.2 litre) basin. If you have any left over it will re-heat beautifully, wrapped in foil, in the oven next day. If you want two smaller puddings, use two 1 pint (570 ml) basins, but give them the same steaming time. If you can't get barley wine (pubs usually have it), use extra stout instead. The best way to use what's left over, if you don't want to drink it, is to add it to my Beef in Designer Beer recipe to give it a beautiful rich sauce. We have also included instructions to make it gluten-free
|4 oz (110 g) shredded suet|
|2 oz (50 g) self-raising flour, sifted|
|4 oz (110 g) white breadcrumbs|
|1 level teaspoon ground mixed spice|
|¼ level teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg|
|good pinch ground cinnamon|
|8 oz (225 g) soft dark brown sugar|
|4 oz (110 g) sultanas|
|4 oz (110 g) raisins|
|10 oz (275 g) currants|
|1 oz (25 g) mixed candied peel, finely chopped (buy whole peel if possible, then chop it yourself)|
|1 oz (25 g) almonds, skinned and chopped|
|1 small cooking apple, peeled, cored and finely chopped|
|grated zest ½ large orange|
|grated zest ½ large lemon|
|2 tablespoons rum|
|2½ fl oz (75 ml) barley wine|
|2½ fl oz (75 ml) stout|
|2 large eggs|
|Need help with conversions?|
You will also need a 2 pint (1.2 litre) pudding basin, lightly greased.
This recipe is taken from Delia Smith’s Christmas.
Begin the day before you want to steam the pudding. Take your largest, roomiest mixing bowl and start by putting in the suet, sifted flour and breadcrumbs, spices and sugar. Mix these ingredients very thoroughly together, then gradually mix in all the dried fruit, mixed peel and nuts followed by the apple and the grated orange and lemon zests.
Don't forget to tick everything off so as not to leave anything out.
Now in a smaller basin measure out the rum, barley wine and stout, then add the eggs and beat these thoroughly together. Next pour this over all the other ingredients, and begin to mix very thoroughly.
It's now traditional to gather all the family round, especially the children, and invite everyone to have a really good stir and make a wish!
The mixture should have a fairly sloppy consistency – that is, it should fall instantly from the spoon when this is tapped on the side of the bowl. If you think it needs a bit more liquid add a spot more stout.
Cover the bowl and leave overnight.
Next day pack the mixture into the lightly greased basin, cover it with a double sheet of silicone paper (baking parchment) and a sheet of foil and tie it securely with string (you really need to borrow someone's finger for this!). It's also a good idea to tie a piece of string across the top to make a handle. Place the pudding in a steamer set over a saucepan of simmering water and steam the pudding for 8 hours.
Do make sure you keep a regular eye on the water underneath and top it up with boiling water from the kettle from time to time.
When the pudding is steamed let it get quite cold, then remove the steam papers and foil and replace them with some fresh ones, again making a string handle for easier manoeuvring. Now your Christmas pudding is all ready for Christmas Day. Keep it in a cool place away from the light. Under the bed in an unheated bedroom is an ideal place.
To cook, fill a saucepan quite full with boiling water, put it on the heat and, when it comes back to the boil, place a steamer on top of the pan and turn it down to a gentle simmer. Put the Christmas pudding in the steamer, cover and leave to steam away for 2¼ hours.
You'll need to check the water from time to time and maybe top it up a bit.
To serve, remove the pudding from the steamer and take off the wrapping. Slide a palette knife all round the pudding, then turn it out on to a warmed plate. Place a suitably sized sprig of holly on top.
Now warm a ladleful of brandy over direct heat, and as soon as the brandy is hot ask someone to set light to it. Place the ladle, now gently flaming, on top of the pudding – but don't pour it over until you reach the table.
When you do, pour it slowly over the pudding, sides and all, and watch it flame to the cheers of the assembled company!
When both flames and cheers have died down, serve the pudding with rum sauce, or rum or brandy butter.
If you want to make individual Christmas puddings for gifts, this quantity makes eight 6 oz (175 g) small metal pudding basins. Steam them for 3 hours, then re-steam for 1 hour. They look pretty wrapped in silicone paper and muslin and tied with attractive bows and tags.
To make this recipe gluten-free: Replace the suet with either gluten-free or vegetarian suet. Use gluten-free white flour and breadcrumbs made from gluten-free bread, and replace the stout and barley wine with the same amount of sherry.
Note: If you're using gluten-free flour, you will need to add 3 pinches of baking powder to the 2 oz (50 g) of gluten-free white flour.
Return to Homepage
Visit the Delia Online Cookery School with Waitrose
Click here to go to Waitrose.com
Copyright © 2009 Delia Smith/New Crane Internet Limited, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
Serve this mouthwatering brandy butter with any Christmas dessert you like - or even with mince pies!
An all-in-one version of a traditional sauce, this is best made not too far ahead. A good rule of thumb is to make it when you put the Christmas pudding on to steam on Christmas Day.
Some people find a traditional Christmas pudding a bit too heavy at the end of a meal: if this is you, you'll love this alternative as it's lighter but still has all the flavours of the real thing.
A runnier, more liquid offering than rum butter, this is the sauce of choice in Delia's home at Christmas - and who are we to argue?
Not everyone loves the traditional rich plum pudding, so if you're after something lighter for your festive finale, look no further than this wonderfully light pud that won't leave you feeling too full!
Don't let the word souffle put you off - these are very easy to make and can even be reheated or frozen! Serve them with Chilled Rum Sabayon for the finishing touch...
This recipe is a lighter take on the Christmas pudding theme. You can make them a few hours ahead, and re-heat in a medium oven for about five minutes before serving.
For Delia, this family recipe - made by both her grandmother and mother - brings back happy memories of freshly baked trays of mince pies on Christmas Eve.
This lovely cinnamon ice cream is the perfect accompaniment to Christmas desserts - or spoon some over your mince pies!
Most Popular recipes
Win a new 2014 Leisure Cookmaster range cooker in time for Christmas
Flavours of France plus win Le Creuset cookware
Scallop Christmas Starter
05 Dec 2013 19:38
|Delia's live online Christmas chat||
This forum is now closed...
02 Dec 2013 08:24
Craisins - ANOTHER use....
05 Dec 2013 14:49
|Food and travel||
28 Sep 2013 09:20
04 Dec 2013 14:22
|Can Anyone Help?||
05 Dec 2013 16:08
05 Dec 2013 23:55
06 Dec 2013 00:33
05 Dec 2013 16:54