Christmas Pudding on a plate with holly

Christmas Pudding

This Sunday November 20th, the last Sunday before advent, is ‘Stir Up Sunday’ – the traditional day for making your Christmas Pudding.

The Collect for this Sunday starts: ‘Stir up, we beseech thee, O Lord, the wills of thy faithful people…’, and is an apt reminder that it is time for a different sort of stirring up if your pudding is going to have time to mature before Christmas.

So this week I am sharing my recipe for Christmas Pudding in time for you to stir up on ‘Stir Up Sunday’.

I like to use butter rather than suet in my pudding as I think it gives a lighter texture but you can substitute the same amount of suet if you prefer.

What Equipment you need to make a Christmas Pudding

The recipe needs a 1.2 litre / 2 pint pudding bowl and makes a family size pudding for about eight people. Halve the quantities for a smaller pudding made in a 600 ml / 1 pint bowl serving four people.

You will also need some string, foil and baking parchment or greaseproof paper.

Christmas Pudding in bowl covered with foil and with string tied to make a handle
Christmas Pudding in bowl covered with foil and with string tied to make a handle

Ingredients for Christmas Pudding

Jump to printable recipe card

  • 2 ounces / 55 grams wholemeal flour
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground all spice
  • 4 ounces / 110 grams fresh wholemeal breadcrumbs
  • 4 ounces / 110 grams dark brown sugar
  • 4 ounces / 110 grams butter
  • 6 ounces / 165 grams currants
  • 4 ounces / 110 grams raisins
  • 4 ounces / 110 grams sultanas
  • 4 ounces / 110 grams mixed candied peel
  • 4 ounces / 110 grams grated apple
  • Zest and juice of one medium orange
  • Brandy, rum or sherry
  • 2 eggs

Directions

  1. Sieve the flour and spices into a large mixing bowl and stir in the breadcrumbs and sugar and rub in the butter.
  2. Stir in the dried fruit (currants, raisins, sultanas), mixed candied peel, grated apple and orange zest.
  3. Measure the orange juice and make it up 5 fluid ounces / 150 ml with brandy, rum or sherry.
  4. Add the eggs and measured liquid and mix to a soft consistency.
  5. Now gather the family together so that everyone can stir the pudding and make a wish.
  6. I like to leave the pudding to stand overnight to allow the flavours to merge and develop fully but you can cook it straight away if it is more convenient.
  7. Grease your pudding bowl and put a small piece of baking parchment or greaseproof paper at the bottom of the bowl (See the video below for this step and steps 8 and 9).
  8. Spoon the pudding mixture into the bowl and smooth the surface. Cover the mixture with a round piece of baking parchment or greaseproof paper to fit directly on the surface of the pudding.
  9. Now cover the bowl first with a sheet of baking parchment or greaseproof paper tied securely with string under the rim of the bowl. Then cover the paper with a sheet of foil tying that securely as well. Tie a piece of string across the top of the bowl to make a handle. Trim any excess of paper and foil.
  10. Take a large saucepan big enough to fit your pudding basin in. Place an upturned plate in the bottom of the saucepan and quarter fill with boiling water.
  11. Put the saucepan on a high heat and when the water is bubbling steadily lower your pudding into it. Top up the water if necessary until it is a third of the way up the pudding basin. Put the lid on the saucepan and lower the heat so the water is kept at a fast simmer.
  12. You now need to boil your pudding for 6 hours.
    DO NOT LET IT BOIL DRY!! Keep a filled kettle ready to top up your saucepan with boiling water when necessary.
    My mother used to tell us about a Christmas pudding she made during the Second World War. She had saved her rations for weeks to get the ingredients together. She put it on to boil and it boiled dry and was ruined. She used to laugh when she told us but she said that at the time she just sat in the kitchen and cried.
    So watch your pudding carefully and keep the boiling water topped up.
  13. When the 6 hours are up remove the pudding from the saucepan and allow to cool.
  14. When completely cold remove the coverings and re-cover with new ones.
  15. Now store in a cool place until Christmas Day. Look out for my new picture on Christmas Day!

Christmas Pudding

Recipe by Scones Plus More Course: PuddingCuisine: EnglishDifficulty: Moderate
Servings

8

servings
Prep time

30

minutes
Cooking time

6

hours 

Ingredients

  • 2 ounces / 55 grams wholemeal flour

  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

  • 1 teaspoon ground all spice

  • 4 ounces / 110 grams fresh wholemeal breadcrumbs

  • 4 ounces / 110 grams dark brown sugar

  • 4 ounces / 110 grams butter

  • 6 ounces / 165 grams currants

  • 4 ounces / 110 grams raisins

  • 4 ounces / 110 grams sultanas

  • 4 ounces / 110 grams mixed candied peel

  • 4 ounces / 110 grams grated apple

  • Zest and juice of one medium orange

  • Brandy, rum or sherry

  • 2 eggs

Directions

  • Sieve the flour and spices into a large mixing bowl and stir in the breadcrumbs and sugar and rub in the butter.
  • Stir in the dried fruit (currants, raisins, sultanas), mixed candied peel, grated apple and orange zest.
  • Measure the orange juice and make it up 5 fluid ounces / 150 ml with brandy, rum or sherry.
  • Add the eggs and measured liquid and mix to a soft consistency.
  • Now gather the family together so that everyone can stir the pudding and make a wish.
  • I like to leave the pudding to stand overnight to allow the flavours to merge and develop fully but you can cook it straight away if it is more convenient.
  • Grease your pudding bowl and put a small piece of baking parchment or greaseproof paper at the bottom of the bowl.
  • Spoon the pudding mixture into the bowl and smooth the surface. Cover the mixture with a round piece of baking parchment or greaseproof paper to fit directly on the surface of the pudding.
  • Now cover the bowl first with a sheet of baking parchment or greaseproof paper tied securely with string under the rim of the bowl. Then cover the paper with a sheet of foil tying that securely as well. Tie a piece of string across the top of the bowl to make a handle. Trim any excess of paper and foil.
  • Take a large saucepan big enough to fit your pudding basin in. Place an upturned plate in the bottom of the saucepan and quarter fill with boiling water.
  • Put the saucepan on a high heat and when the water is bubbling steadily lower your pudding into it. Top up the water if necessary until it is a third of the way up the pudding basin. Put the lid on the saucepan and lower the heat so the water is kept at a fast simmer.
  • You now need to boil your pudding for 6 hours.
    DO NOT LET IT BOIL DRY!!
    Keep a filled kettle ready to top up your saucepan with boiling water when necessary.
    Watch your pudding carefully and keep the boiling water topped up.
  • When the 6 hours are up remove the pudding from the saucepan and allow to cool.
  • When completely cold remove the coverings and re-cover with new ones.
  • Now store in a cool place until Christmas Day when you will need to re-heat it for 2 hours. Look out for my new picture on Christmas Day!

how to prepare your bowl (Steps 7, 8 and 9 in directions)

Christmas Day

November is the best time to make your Christmas Pudding. It’s flavours mature nicely in time for Christmas Day and then on the day all you have to do is boil it for 2 hours to reheat before serving.

Serve decorated with a sprig of holly and doused in flaming brandy and enjoy!

November – the time to make your mincemeat!

There’s also still time to make your mincemeat in time for Christmas – see my Slow Cooker Orange Mincemeat recipe from last week.

Happy Baking!

Tanya

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