- 500g currants
- 500g sultanas
- 500g raisins
- 125g pitted prunes, chopped
- 125g mixed citrus peel, chopped
- 1 cup brandy
- 500g butter, softened
- 360g brown sugar, lightly packed
- Grated zest of 1 lemon & 1 orange
- 10 medium eggs, at room temperature
- 310g plain flour (gf can be used)
- 1 teaspoon bicarb soda
- 1 tsp ground nutmeg
- 2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 150g soft white breadcrumbs (gluten free bread can be used)
- 125g blanched almonds, chopped
- 1 large Granny Smith apple, peeled & grated
- 1 large carrot, peeled & grated
In preparation, sprinkle brandy or your special liquor over dried fruit, cover and leave overnight.
Cream the butter & sugar with lemon & orange zest until light & fluffy. Add 8 of the eggs, one at a time, beating well in between.
Sift the flour with spices & bicarb soda, add to the mixture and beat well. Then add the other 2 eggs, breadcrumbs, apple, carrot & nuts.
Mix well then add the mixture to the brandied fruit. Cover and stand for at least an hour in order for the crumbs to swell then give the mixture a good stir.
Place the mixture into a well-greased pudding basin/s. Cover with a double layer of greaseproof baking paper and secure firmly with string or a rubber band. Lower into simmering water that comes 2/3 way up the sides of the basin. Cover & simmer for about 1+1/2 hrs for the large pudding and 45 minutes for the small. Top up with boiling water as needed.
* To cook in a cloth: Scald the calico cloth, then wring out and sprinkle with flour. Put the mixture in the cloth, using a colander or bowl to hold the cloth, then tie the top with string, making a loop at the top. Dust outside with flour. Lower into boiling water to cover. Simmer for 4 to 5 hrs, then remove from the saucepan and hang them in an airy spot to dry. The puddings can be refrigerated and reheated by boiling for 45 minutes on Christmas Day.
Note: This mixture makes 2 large puddings which served 6-8 people each (weighing approximately 700g) plus 3-4 smaller puddings which serve 2 so you can keep some and have extra to give as gifts.
Storage note: You can cryovac puddings for storage. The large ones can be reheated in the plastic in simmering water for 25-30 minutes, the small ones for 7 minutes or simply remove from cryovac and microwave for 4 minutes for the large or 40 seconds minute for small.