Christmas is usually a big affair at the Flockhart and extended family household. Much is made of tradition throughout the day and also for the Christmas Dinner. Auntie Ida used to come out to Longwood about 4-6 weeks before Christmas to help make the puddings and pies. We all had to have a stir of the pudding mixture for good luck and wrap money and charms to put inside it. Here’s the recipe that we all love so much, and hope you do too!
CHRISTMAS PUDDING (Pamela Flockhart)
Enough for 9-10 x 1pint/half kilo puddings, two medium sized puddings or a big one! I didn’t realise until I tried this myself that it makes a lot of pudding! If you want to just make one for your family of 4-6 I suggest you use only a third of the recipe amounts 🙂
Pamela’s Christmas pudding is rich and usually most enjoyed in the days after Christmas – warmed or cold with cream!
- 450g currants
- 450g seedless raisins
- 350g sultanas
- 225g muscatel raisins
- 110g glace cherries
- 110g preserved ginger
- 110g dried apricots or peaches
- 110g candied orange peel
- 110g candied citron peel
- 50g candied lemon peel
- 225g shredded almonds
- 225g finely grated carrot
- 2 teaspoons glycerine
- 280g White breadcrumbs
- 170g Brown breadcrumbs
- 280g Plain flour
- 2 tsp Baking powder
- 2 tsp Salt
- 2 tsp Cinnamon
- ½ tsp Mixed spice
- ¼ tsp Ground ginger
- 1 tsp Ground Nutmeg
- 1 ½ tsp Ground mace
||A. PREPARE BASINS:
- 225g Butter
- 225g Suet (sub with grated frozen butter or vegetable shortening)
- 450g Cooking apples, peeled & chopped
- 225g White Sugar
- 225g Brown Sugar
- 8-9 eggs
- 3 tbsp Golden syrup
- 3 tbsp Black treacle
- 140ml Brandy/rum/whisky/sherry
- 140-240ml Old ale/stout/sherry/wine
|Grease and line bottom of pudding basins with a circular disk of baking/greaseproof paper.Cover puddings with 2 circular disks of baking/greaseproof paper, 5cm wider diameter than basin. Use an old sheet to wrap up the basin, tie with a drawstring around top and make a small handle. Scald cloth & sprinkle with flour.
|B. PREPARING MIXTURE:
||C. MIXING THE PUDDING:
- Clean & prepare fruit.
- Chop into smaller pieces if too large. Peel & grate carrots.
- Mix altogether.
- Sprinkle with glycerine.
- Mix crumbs in and cover.
Leave in a cool place overnight.
- Sift together in a very large bowl the flour, slat, baking powder and spices.
- Cut in the butter & suet till mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.
- Add sugar, then crumbs and the apple.
- Add the fruit & mix well
- Beat eggs well and stir into muxture gradually
- Warm the syrup & treacle and stir in
- Stir in the spirits
Mixture should be moist enough to drop easily from a spoon but not runny.
|D. FILLING THE BASINS
||E. COOKING TIME
- Fill each basin about ¾ full
- If money or charms are to be included – boil first in a little water and wrap well in baking paper, and lay in at intervals as you fill the basin.
- Smooth over the top & make a little hollow in the middle.
- Cover well with baking paper
- Wrap in cotton (old sheet)/foil and tie up with string.
- Scald and sprinkle with flour.
- Set basins on a rack in a pot of boiling water.
- Boil for at least 4-5 hours
- (Make sure water doesn’t get into the pudding and that your pot does not boil dry!)
- Store in a cool place
- On Christmas day boil again for a further 2 hours.
(If microwaving, do not put foil or money in! A 450g pudding can be zapped on high for 3 minutes and left to stand for a couple – a large pudding is better steamed).
- Unwrap pudding, carefully loosen edges and upturn onto a heatproof plate – watch out, it will be steamy hot! Remove any baking paper.
- Make sure that you have a clear, unobstructed route to the table. And that there is a place to set the pudding down on a mat. (Look out for draped decorations that could catch fire.)
- Pour a cup or two of rum or brandy over the pudding and strike a long match or lighter. Touch the flame to the base of the pudding. As soon as the low blue flame covers the pudding, parade the pudding into the dining room (preferably to singing or the bagpipes) and ceremoniously place on table mat.
- Garnish with holly, if desired.
- Serve with brandy butter and/or cream.
The mixture in process. It darkens in colour after adding the treacle.