Tuesday, December 22, 2009

'Plum' Pudding - my way

My grandpa is visiting for the holidays and so I have been going through the recipes my grandma handwrote for me. One recipe is for English XMas 'Plum' Pudding. It is a recipe, she writes, from "Women's Day" Specialty Recipe Collection, circa 1960s - but Grandpa remembers it as hers.

Grandma's recipe calls for candied citron, candied fruit and candied orange peel to be soaked overnight in beer....but I didn't have any beer, so I altered the recipe - slightly- and the result was a slightly boozy success - especially with the 'Sauce Suberb' (recipe below)

Let the following ingredients soak up 1 cup spiced rum and 1/2 cup prune juice over night:

1 1/2 cups raisins
1/4 cup candied cherries
1/4 cup dried apricots
1/4 cup dried cranberries
1/4 cup chopped dates

and add the zest of 1 small orange and then cut the orange into small cubes and add them too.

The next day:

Beat together:

4 eggs
1 1/2 cups brown sugar

Stir in:

The fruit mixture
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1/2 cup bread crumbs
( * if you don't have any, toast some bread and then grind it up)
and....and....1/2 cup lard

Sift the following into the above mixture:

1 cup all purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1/8 tsp cloves
1/8 tsp allspice

Start boiling some water.

Pour the mixture into 2, greased moulds (only half way up!). Cover each one with tin foil with a pleat in the centre and then tie the foil on tightly.

Place them in a deep dish/pan - ideally the same height as the moulds, with a rack on the bottom (I used the big roasting pan- which has a rack- that we use for our turkey.)

Pour boiling water half way up the moulds.

Cover the pan with more tin foil ( or a lid, if it fits tight) and cook on the stove top for 2 to 2 1/2 hours. Keep the water boiling.

*Try your best to refill more boiling water when the level goes down.

It is done when a knife comes out of the centre clean. Unmould and serve immediately OR keep in the fridge over night and the next day, unmould by dipping the bowl into a hot water bath for 5 minutes and then flipping it out onto a plate.

Serve with Sauce Superb (this recipe is from my grandma as well. She got it from a 'Loblaws Old Fashioned Recipes Pamphlet' from the 1940s):

Whisk in a bain marie until thick and pale yellow:

2 eggs

Take off heat and whisk in:

1 cup icing sugar
4 tsp spiced rum

In a separate bowl, whisk:

1 cup 35%/ whipping cream

Fold the whipped cream into the egg mixture and serve immediately (pft - as if you could wait!)

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