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My mother made her Christmas puddings in late October along with her fruitcake (I know, I know -- Fruitcake? LOL) Making this and eating it reminds me of her and all the wonderful Christmas memories she made for me as a child.
- 2⁄3 cup chopped suet
- 2 tablespoons pared chopped apples
- 2 tablespoons chopped candied orange peel
- 2 tablespoons chopped candied lemon peel
- 2⁄3 cup chopped candied citron peel
- 1 1⁄2 cups raisins
- 1 cup currants
- 2 cups packaged dry breadcrumbs (or make your own in a blender)
- 3 teaspoons cinnamon
- 1 1⁄2 teaspoons ginger
- 1⁄4 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1⁄2 teaspoon allspice
- 1⁄4 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup sugar
- 1⁄3 cup raspberry preserves
- 4 eggs
- 2 tablespoons milk
- 6 tablespoons cognac
- 1⁄4 cup cognac
- 6 tablespoons dry white wine
VANILLA HARD SAUCE
- 1⁄2 cup soft butter
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup unsifted confectioners' sugar
- 1⁄4 cup light cream
- 2 -3 tablespoons brandy
- In large bowl, combine suet, fruits, bread crumbs, spices, salt, sugar, and preserves. Mix well.
- With rotary beater, beat eggs until foamy. Stir in milk, 6 tbsp cognac, and wine.
- With rubber scraper, fold egg mixture into fruit mixture until well combined.
- Turn batter into a well-greased 2-quart steam pudding mold with a tight-fitting cover.
- Place mold on a trivet in a large kettle. Pour in enough boiling water to come halfway up the side of the mold. Cover the kettle.
- Steam pudding for four hours. The water in the kettle should boil gently; add more water as needed.
- Remove pudding to wire rack and cool 5 minutes. Invert on serving plate; lift off mold.
- In a small saucepan, warm rest of cognac slightly. Ignite and pour, blazing, over the pudding. Serve with Vanilla Hard Sauce.
- To make hard sauce, beat all ingredients together until smooth. Refrigerate until ready to serve.