Food, Recipes

4th Recipe of Christmas – Christmas pudding

4th Recipe of Christmas - Christmas pudding


  • unsalted butter , for greasing
  • 150 g dates
  • 150 g dried apricots
  • 150 g pecan nuts
  • 75 g crystallised ginger
  • 1 small sprig of fresh rosemary
  • 150 g dried cranberries
  • 150 g raisins
  • 150 g suet
  • 150 g plain flour
  • 75 g fresh breadcrumbs
  • 200 ml semi-skimmed milk
  • 1 large free-range egg
  • 1 clementine
  • golden syrup
  • barrel-aged Bourbon


  1. Grease a 1.5 litre pudding bowl with butter.
  2. Destone your dates, then, by hand or in a food processor, finely chop the flesh with the apricots, pecans, ginger and rosemary leaves. Place it all in a mixing bowl with the cranberries, raisins, suet, flour, breadcrumbs and milk. Crack in the egg, finely grate in the clementine zest, squeeze in the juice and mix it all together really well.
  3. Tip the mixture into the greased bowl and cover with a single layer of greaseproof paper and a double layer of tin foil. Tie a piece of string around the bowl to secure them in place and make it watertight, then sit it in a large, deep saucepan and pour in enough water to come halfway up the sides of the bowl.
  4. Bring the water to the boil, cover the pan with a tight-fitting lid, and reduce to a simmer for 4 hours. Check the water regularly, and keep topping it up with boiling water, if needed.
  5. When the time’s up, lift out the bowl, remove the foil and paper, then carefully turn the pudding out on to a plate ready to serve, or leave to cool and reheat just before you need it.
  6. You can either drizzle it with golden syrup and a swig of Bourbon – gorgeous – or be a bit more flamboyant and gently heat a good few swigs of Bourbon just to warm it, then strike a match to the pan (stand back!), let it flame, and carefully pour it over your pudding.
  7. Present it to your guests and sing some Christmassy songs, then when the flame subsides drizzle with golden syrup. Serve with cream, custard or even ice cream.


Cold leftovers are delicious with a slice of cheese, such as Lancashire, or in a Christmas sundae.

After steaming, allow the pudding to cool, then remove the greaseproof paper, leaving it covered with tin foil. Store in a cool, dark place until the big day, then simply steam again to reheat – about an hour should do it, until piping hot throughout.