It seems that people either hate 'em or love 'em. Me, I love them all. Where do you stand?
If you don't like fruitcake, you're probably not going to like Christmas Pudding. It's similar in that it has dried fruit, but this Christmas Pudding is different in that you get to add whatever you like! If you don't like those little neon red and green candied cherries, don't use them. If you love dark raisins but hate golden raisins, use all dark raisins! If you've really got a thing for apricots, or prunes or cranberries... make your Christmas Pudding with those alone!
Can't go wrong with this recipe... let's have some fun!
I will pretty much eat anything ... not a picky eater! I started with one-half cup each of golden raisins, currants, dried prunes, dried apricots and dried cranberries. Look at all those shriveled little bits of fruit.
Oh, I didn't tell you... I drowned them in brandy and let them soak overnight. Look at those glistening, plump pieces of goodness!
Here's the pudding mold (mine has a 1-1/2 quart capacity). Since this pudding is steamed, the mold should sit up off the bottom of the pot. I placed a small trivet inside the pot, then placed the pudding mold in the pot while I ran water about half-way up the mold. I put the water on to boil while I made the pudding.
Basically, the recipe calls for creamed butter and brown sugar; the addition of eggs, prepared mincemeat, pumpkin puree, orange juice and the brandied fruit (plus the brandy it was soaking in). A little flour is added along with some baking powder, pumpkin pie spice and walnuts.
This the pudding after it was mixed up and placed into the mold (which had been sprayed with non-stick spray). It's a fragrant, gloppy mess of a batter with more fruit than flour. I was so excited to get it into the steamer!
I put a piece of parchment and then foil over the mold to ensure no water got into it, and then clamped the lid on.
This pudding steamed for three hours. This is what it looked like when I removed the lid.
This is just chock full of fruit and so moist! It smelled heavenly!
I think this pudding is best warm. It can be warmed either by wrapping the pudding well in foil and putting it into a 350 degree oven for 30 minutes or so... or, individual slices can be warmed in the microwave.
This is wonderful with a spoonful of hard sauce (a delectable mix of butter, powdered sugar and vanilla), but for the sake of today's photography, I whipped up a bit of cream sweetened with a little brown sugar.
I made two of these this week. One to make sure it would work, because I chose my own ingredients, and one to send to a dear friend who loves Christmas Pudding as much as I do!
Merry Christmas, George and family! It wasn't until I'd taken this picture and decided it was the one I would use as the final picture, that I realized that George had given me this Hummel "Ride Into Christmas" as a gift one year!