Last-minute Christmas pudding
Caramel brandy sauce
Last-minute Christmas pudding with caramel brandy sauce
1.Grease a 1.75-litre (7-cup) pudding steamer or basin; line base with a round of baking paper. Place a small wire rack or inverted saucer in the base of a large saucepan – make sure the pan is big enough that the lid can fit with the pudding steamer inside. Half-fill the pan with water; cover, bring to the boil.
2.Combine raisins, brandy and the water in a medium saucepan over medium heat; bring to the boil. Simmer, uncovered, for about 5 minutes or until most of the liquid is evaporated; cool.
3.Beat the butter and sugar in a small bowl with an electric mixer until light and creamy. Add the eggs one at a time, beating until just combined after each addition. Transfer mixture to a large bowl.
4.Stir in breadcrumbs, apricots and raisins, then sifted dry ingredients until well combined. Spoon the mixture into the prepared steamer; level off the top.
5.Secure with steamer lid. If steamer or basin does not have a lid, place a sheet of foil on bench, top with a sheet of baking paper. Fold a 5cm pleat crossways through both layers. Place sheets, baking paper-side down, over steamer; secure around steamer with string. Make a handle using excess string tied across the top. Trim away excess foil and paper, leaving about 4cm. Crush remaining foil around string to help form a good seal.
6.Place steamer in the saucepan with enough boiling water to come halfway up the side of the steamer. Cover the pan with a tight-fitting lid; steam for 3-4 hours. (Longer cooking time will give a darker pudding). Replenish with boiling water as needed to maintain boil and water level during cooking. Stand pudding for 10 minutes before turning out.
7.Meanwhile, to make caramel brandy sauce, place all the sauce ingredients in a medium saucepan; stir over heat until the butter melts. Bring to the boil; boil, uncovered, for 2 minutes. Remove from the heat. The sauce will thicken as it cools.
8.Serve hot pudding with caramel brandy sauce.
Pudding and sauce suitable to freeze separately. Sauce suitable to microwave.Note