Boiled christmas pudding

Serve thick wedges of this traditional pudding with custard or cream.
boiled Christmas pudding
6H 30M



1.Combine fruit, rind, juice and brandy in large bowl. Cover tightly with plastic wrap; store in a cool, dark place overnight or up to a week, stirring every day.
2.Beat butter and sugar in large bowl with electric mixer until just combined. Beat in eggs, one at a time, beat only until combined between each addition. Add butter mixture to fruit mixture then add sifted dry ingredients and breadcrumbs; mix well.
3.Fill large boiler three-quarters full of hot water, cover; bring to a boil. Have ready 2.5m of kitchen string and an extra ½ cup of plain flour. Wearing thick rubber gloves, dip pudding cloth in boiling water; boil 1 minute then remove, carefully squeeze excess water from cloth. Working quickly, spread hot cloth on bench, rub flour into centre of cloth to cover an area about 40cm in diameter, leaving flour a little thicker in centre of cloth where “skin” on the pudding needs to be thickest.
4.Place pudding mixture in centre of cloth. Gather cloth evenly around mixture. Tie cloth tightly with string as close to mixture as possible. Knot two pairs of corners together to make pudding easier to remove.
5.Lower pudding into boiling water; tie free ends of string to handles of boiler to suspend pudding. Cover with tight-fitting lid, boil for 6 hours, replenishing water as necessary. Lift pudding from water. Suspend from a wooden spoon by placing over rungs of upturned stool or wedging handle in drawer. Hang 10 minutes.
6.Place pudding on board; cut string, carefully peel back cloth. Turn pudding onto a plate then carefully peel cloth away completely; cool. Stand at least 20 minutes or until skin darkens and pudding becomes firm.

You need a 60cm square of unbleached calico for the cloth. If calico is new, soak in cold water overnight; next day, boil 20 minutes then rinse. To store pudding, wrap cold pudding in plastic wrap and seal tightly in a freezer bag or airtight container. Pudding can be stored in refrigerator up to 2 months or frozen up to 12 months. To reheat pudding, thaw frozen pudding 3 days in refrigerator; remove from refrigerator 12 hours before reheating. Remove plastic wrap; tie dry unfloured cloth around pudding. Boil 2 hours, following instructions above.


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