I was a bit of a Slack Alice this year. I managed to let Stir-up Sunday on November 23rd sail by without my noticing. So I didn’t make my Christmas Puddings on the Great Mixing Day and felt slightly guilty. Pressure, pressure…
Anyway, this weekend I set to and got two beautiful puds mixed and steamed and they look magnificent, all ready with their foil covers and string handles for a second boil on Christmas morning.
Allergen-free Christmas Pudding
I always use the same recipe, which never fails. It’s really easy and is ideal if you’re avoiding nuts, eggs, wheat, soy or dairy. I always double the quantities to make two puddings and back in the day I used to keep one maturing in the cellar for the following year. But as the family has expanded and there are now 18 of us round the table on Christmas Day, my two delicious puddings just about serve them all.
We always dim the lights and carry the puddings to the table, aflame with brandy. The trick to getting plenty of flame that lasts the journey from kitchen to dining room is to warm a ladelful of brandy over a gas hob (or in a small pan if you don’t have gas). Brandy flames at about 80C so, when the brandy is hot, ask someone to set light to it using a long match and it should ignite fairly easily. You can achieve the same result with vodka if you don’t have brandy.
Then pour it slowly over the pudding, sides and all and watch it flame to the cheers of the assembled company. When both flames and cheers have died down, serve the pudding with Christmas Rum Sauce or Brandy Butter (or both if you’re my husband).