Boiled plum pudding

Boiled plum pudding

By
From
Encyclopedia of Food and Cookery
Serves
8-10

This is not as heavy as the usual pudding and has no spices, but develops a marvellous flavour after 2 weeks’ maturation. This is the pudding of Dickens’ England.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
155g raisins, coarsely chopped
125g stoned dates, coarsely copped
155g sultanas
125g currants
90g mixed glace peel, chopped
60ml brandy, plus extra to serve
500g self-raising flour
1 teaspoon salt
250g beef suet, grated
230g caster sugar
175g treacle
375ml water

Method

  1. Soak fruit and peel in brandy overnight.
  2. Sift flour and salt into a large mixing bowl. Rub suet into flour until mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Stir in sugar, brandy-soaked fruit and treacle mixed with water. Mix thoroughly to a firm batter.
  3. Rinse a large pudding cloth in boiling water, remove (using rubber gloves) and wring out well. Sift flour over and shake off any excess. Turn pudding mixture into centre of cloth and gather cloth firmly around pudding. Secure cloth tightly with string. Tie ends of pudding cloth around a wooden spoon and rest wooden spoon on edges of saucepan with pudding hanging into pan without touching bottom.
  4. Pour boiling water into pan to cover the pudding and place a lid on top. Steam for 1 hour. By this time, pudding will have taken shape and wooden spoon may be removed. Steam for a further 1½ hours.
  5. Hang pudding in a dark, dry place for at least 2 weeks to mature. On day it is to be eaten, steam pudding for a further 1–1½ hours. Unwrap and turn onto a heated platter. Heat some brandy, set alight and pour flaming over pudding, taking it immediately to the table. Serve with vanilla ice cream, whipped cream or hard sauce.

Note

  • Do not worry if a little mould forms on the cloth while the pudding is maturing. Just wipe it off if possible and boil pudding as instructed in the recipe. Never, never unwrap the pudding and place it in a clean cloth. This will let the water in as soon as you boil it, ruining your pudding.
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