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                 Plum Pudding


We offer four recipes for this great traditional dessert especially but not specifically for the Festive Season.  But, it is also kind of a great dessert for a Sunday Dinner too.


Wark Family Traditional Plum Pudding. 

The ingredients below will make one pudding (in a 7” bowl - serves at least 8 people).
We usually make them up in batches of fours and freeze them until needed.


1/4 lb raisins
1/4 lb sultanas
1/4 lb currants
3/4 cup grated apple
(or 1/4 pound dried apple rings)
1 oz mixed peel
1/4 lb flour
1/4 lb bread crumbs
1/4 lb suet, margarine or butter
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp baking soda
1 tsp mixed spice
1 tsp orange rind
4 oz sugar
2 eggs
1 1/3 cups milk


Mix all dry ingredients & apple together; Rub shortening into flour; Add beaten egg, milk & dissolved soda;
Let combined mix stand for a few hours (preferably overnight in the fridge; Pour mixture into a greased 7” bowl (we use stainless steel mixing bowls)

(For an extra sense of tradition, we sometimes place old, boiled coins in the pudding just before steaming. Just remember to warn your guests about this before they start eating!)

Place greased cheesecloth over the top of the filled bowl; secure firmly by wrapping string around the bowl’s edge. Place in large pot or steamer and steam for 3 hours on a hot stove. Check the steamer’s water levels regularly to ensure steaming process does not run dry;

After steaming, allow to cool, carefully peel off the cheesecloth top, run a flat knife around the inside of the bowl and transfer the pudding to a plate. The pudding can then be cooled, bagged and frozen or eaten that night. 

Just before serving, re-heat the pudding by steaming or microwave. To flambé the pudding: fill a large steel spoon with brandy, heat the spoon with a candle or matchstick. It’s ready to pour over the pudding when the brandy ignites with a blue flame in the spoon. Pour it generously over the pudding. 

Accompany the pudding with whipped cream or vanilla custard.

We hope that a few adventurous souls will give this plum pudding a go. I guess it’s just another way we feel connected to you. So steam up the kitchen and know that this traditional recipe comes from our family to yours, with love. 

Andrew Wark

2. Plum Pudding


1/2 lb. Stale Bread Crumbs
1 cup Scalded Milk
1/4 lb. Sugar
4 Eggs
1/2 lb. Raisins, seeded, cut in pieces, and floured
1/4 lb. Currants
1/4 lb. Finely Chopped Figs
2 oz. Finely Cut Citron
1/2 lb. Suet
1/4 cup Wine and Brandy mixed
1/2 Grated Nutmeg
3/4 teaspoon Cinnamon
1/3 teaspoon Clove
1/3 teaspoon Mace

Soak bread crumbs in milk, let stand until cool, add sugar, beaten yolks of eggs, raisins, currants, figs, and citron; chop suet, and cream by using the hand; combine mixtures, then add wine, brandy, nutmeg, cinnamon, clove, mace, and whites of eggs beaten stiff. Turn into buttered mould, cover, and steam six hours.

Fannie Merritt Farmer Boston Cooking-School Cookbook (1896 edition)

3. Plum Pudding

2 ounces each: citron, raisins, black currants, orange peel and walnuts 
1 ounce each: Pineapple and cherries 
2 ounces flour 
2 ounces bread crumbs 
2 ounces melted shortening 
1 egg 
1 ounces juice 
2 ounces sugar 
2 ounces brown sugar 
2 Tablespoons port wine 
2 Tablespoons molasses 
1/8 teaspoon each: ginger, cloves, allspice and nutmeg 
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon 

Mix together all of the fruit. Separate with flour and crumbs. Add sugars and spices. Add liquids and egg. Mix well. Place in 4 greased custard cups. Place in pan of boiling water halfway up custard cups. Cover with foil or lid. Bake at 375 degrees for 1-1/2 hours. Cool and remove from dishes. Reheat and serve. 

ASA Ransom House Bed and Breakfast and Restaurant 

4. Christmas Plum Pudding

Makes 2 x 2 pint basins or 4 x 1pint basin. 

450g (1 lb) Soft Brown Sugar 
450g (1 lb) Currants 
225g (8oz) Shredded Suet 
225g (8oz) Breadcrumbs 
225g (8oz) Sultanas 
225g (8oz) Raisins 
285ml (10 fl oz) Stout 
110g (4oz) Self Raising Flour 
110g (4oz)Glace Cherries 
55g (2oz) Candied Peel 
55g (2oz) almonds, chopped 
4 Eggs medium size 
1 Apple 
1 Lemon (grated rind) 
1 Orange (grated rind) 
4 tbsp Rum or Brandy 
1 tsp Mixed Spice 
½ tsp Nutmeg 
¼ tsp Cinnamon 

Place the suet, flour, breadcrumbs, spices and sugar in bowl and mix thoroughly. 

Add the dried fruit, peel and almonds and mix thoroughly. 
Mix in the peeled, cored and chopped apple and grated orange and lemon rinds. 

In a separate bowl, beat eggs, mix in rum and stout. 
Add this mixture to the dry ingredients - stir, very thoroughly 
(Traditionally a wish is made whilst stirring). 

Pudding should have a "dropping" consistency (if not add a little more stout if needed). 

Leave overnight to allow the dried fruit to plump. 

The following day grease the basins and tightly pack the mixture in them filling to the top. 

Cover each basin with a square of greaseproof paper and a square of cloth or muslin. 

Tie with string then tie the corners of the cloth together on top. 

Steam puddings for 8 hours, ensuring that the water does not evaporate, topping up with boiling water as needed. 

When cooked, allow to cool, remove paper and cloths and replace with a fresh. 

Store in a cool, dry place. 

Steam for 2 hours and serve with warmed flaming brandy or rum poured over. 

The Foody UK & Ireland

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