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Auntie rita's christmas pudding

This recipe is from Kevin Byrne of the Mayfield Eatery in Terenure. It comes from his late aunt Rita Sheehan (nee Harte) and has been a family favourite for years.

Kevin makes it for his restaurant and shop. "The recipe is very traditional but delicious with age," he says. This recipe makes two one-litre puddings.


175g self-raising flour

2 tsps mixed spice

1 tsp ground cinnamon

½ tsp ground nutmeg

225g white breadcrumbs

350g dark brown sugar

450g currants

225g raisins

225g sultanas

125g cut mixed peel

125g cherries, chopped

2 apples, grated

50g chopped almonds

1 orange, zested and chopped

1 lemon, zested and chopped

3 eggs

3 tbps brandy

275ml Guinness

225g unsalted butter, melted


Sieve the flour and spices into a bowl, then add the breadcrumbs, sugar, fruit, nuts, orange and lemon, and mix.

In a separate bowl, beat together the eggs, brandy and Guinness.

Make a well in the centre of the fruit mix and add the egg mix and the melted butter. Cover and leave to rest overnight.

Mix well again, spoon into two greased one-litre bowls and cover with lids. Put the bowls in a deep tray and fill with hot water, three-quarters of the way up, then cover the tray with tin foil.

Place the puddings in an oven at 160°C for five hours.

When they are ready, take the puddings out of the tray, leave them to cool and then store them in a cool area.

My mother recommends pouring a spoon of brandy on to the pudding on Christmas Day and steaming for one hour to achieve a moist pudding.

Weekend Magazine