Catherine Fulvio's Christmas Pudding
Catherine says "here at Ballyknocken, the stirring of the pudding was, and still is, a major family event. We experiment with the recipe and we have come up with an unusual but delicious version using a large dash of Guinness and a hint of cocoa." Yum!
you will need
For steeping 100g raisins
75g mixed peel
4 tbsps dried apricots, finely diced
1 tbsp candied ginger, finely chopped
65ml Grand Marnier (or other orange liqueur or brandy)
75g dark-brown sugar To complete the pudding 45g caster sugar
30g flaked almonds
75g fresh white breadcrumbs
50g plain flour
1 tbsp cocoa powder
Â½ tsp ground cinnamon
Â½ tsp mixed spice
Â½ orange zest
75ml freshly squeezed orange juice
1 egg, beaten
75g suet or chilled butter, grated
Holly and berries, to decorate
Combine all of the steeping ingredients. Cover and leave in a cool place for up to three days. To make the pudding, mix together the caster sugar, almonds, breadcrumbs, flour, cocoa powder, cinnamon and spice in a large bowl.
Stir in the steeped fruit, then add the orange juice and zest. Stir in the beaten egg then, finally, gently mix in the suet or grated butter.
Spoon the mixture into a two-pint pudding bowl, then cover the bowl tightly with a well-fitting lid or a layer of baking parchment and foil. Secure with some string, ensuring that you cross the string over the top of the bowl. This forms a handle (otherwise it is difficult to lift the steamed pudding later).
Place the bowl in a saucepan of hot water. The water should reach a level just below the lid of the bowl. Cover and simmer very gently for four hours, and keep topping up the water as required. Allow the pudding to cool, then store in a cool, dry place.
On Christmas Day, re-heat by steaming it again for up to two hours. Turn out on to a plate and dust with icing sugar. Decorate with holly leaves and berries.