Christ­mas pud­ding

FES­TIVE BAK­ING HAS NEVER BEEN EAS­IER

Sunday Herald Sun - Stellar - - Class -

T ake the guess­work out of this time-hon­oured tra­di­tion by fol­low­ing these sim­ple steps. ¼ cup (40g) sul­tanas ½ cup (80g) cur­rants ½ cup (70g) sliv­ered al­monds ½ tea­spoon mixed spice ¼ cup (45g) brown sugar ¼ cup (55g) caster sugar 2 eggs

³ 2

STEP 1 Place the sul­tanas, cur­rants, date, al­mond, spice, brandy and sherry in a bowl and stir to com­bine. Cover and soak in a cool, dark place for 24 hours. Place the but­ter and sug­ars in the bowl of an elec­tric mixer. Beat for 8–10 min­utes or un­til pale and creamy. Add eggs and beat un­til fluffy. Add the fruit mix­ture, ³ cup flour and bread­crumbs. Mix well. STEP 2 Place a 60cm square piece of cal­ico cloth in boil­ing wa­ter and boil for 5 min­utes. Re­move, al­low to cool and squeeze to re­move ex­cess wa­ter. Open the cloth out, sprin­kle with the re­main­ing flour and rub over the cal­ico. Place the mix­ture in the cen­tre. STEP 3 Gather the ends of the cloth to­gether firmly and tie us­ing string. Cook, cov­ered, in a saucepan of boil­ing wa­ter over medium heat for 4 hours, ad­ding more wa­ter if needed. STEP 4 Re­move from the pan, place in a colan­der over a bowl and re­frig­er­ate un­til cold. To re­heat, boil for 45 min­utes. Re­move, al­low to cool for 5 min­utes and un­wrap. Serve with brandy. Serves 12.

¾ cup (105g) chopped pit­ted dried dates ³ ³ cup ex­tra ³ cup (80ml) sherry 125g un­salted but­ter, chopped

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