If you missed out on this year’s Stir-up Sunday, the centuries-old annual tradition where home-cooks spend the last Sunday before Advent ‘stirring up’ their Christmas pudding, then fret not – you’ve still got time to whip up the best Christmas pudding with Dexam’s help. Put on your most festive Christmas playlist and get in the seasonal spirit whilst mixing up and making the best Christmas pudding: Dexam’s very own cast iron Christmas pudding.
Why use Cast Iron for your Christmas Pudding?
The Christmas Pudding has evolved gradually yet immensely since its inception. Originally, the Christmas Pudding would have been wrapped in a cloth and boiled, and contained meat, being eaten at the start of the meal or alongside the meat. Yet, the Christmas classic is now traditionally eaten after the main course, as a sweet dessert soaked in booze!
In order to create this traditional dish, our recipe requires a cast iron dish in which to steam the best Christmas Pudding. A distinct quality of cast iron is its low conductivity of heat and therefore slow tempo of cooking which can create particularly desirable results. The self basting lid, on our Chasseur Casseroles, keeps food tender, and specifically in this instance, creating a moist and succulent Christmas Pudding. However, cast iron boasts countless more advantages, such as an easy to clean enamel coating which, as you cook, gradually develops a natural, slick patina, called seasoning, which releases food easily and allows for the creation of many different meals for years to come, owing to cast iron’s durability.
How to Make the Best Christmas Pudding
1) Roughly chop up your dried fruits into smaller chunks. Mix them with the brandy or whisky and sugar.
2) Add the grated orange zest to the fruit before pouring the orange juice into the mix. Mix all the ingredients, cover the bowl with one of our Charles Viancin lids and place in the fridge to chill for the night.
3) The following day, grease a 1.2 litre pudding basin and place some grease proof paper into the base.
5) Begin to slowly whisk in the beaten eggs, waiting until you have mixed in the new addition before adding more.
6) When all the eggs have been incorporated into the mixture, add the soaked fruit and juices and stir well with our Wooden Spoon.
7) Add the flour and breadcrumbs and stir.
8) Add in the nuts and spices while continuously stirring.
9) Spoon the mixture into a prepared pudding basin and cover with a double layer of grease proof paper and one sheet of aluminium foil or alternatively our Butter Muslin, tying with a string.
10) Fill your Chasseur Casserole a third of the way full with water and place the prepared pudding into the water, putting the lid on top to start steaming the pudding.
11) Leave the casserole dish with the pudding in, on a low heat in the oven for six hours to steam.
12) When steaming your pudding, be sure not to let the water boil instead making sure that it remains on a light simmer at all times, refilling the water if need be to retain the appropriate water level.
13) After steaming for six hours, your pudding is ready to serve or if making in advance you can cool them for up to 2-3 months in a dark place, re-steaming them again for 2 hours before serving.
14) When serving carefully place the pudding onto a serving plate and garnish with cherries. Light the brandy and when the flames are fully alight, pour the brandy over the pudding and serve with either cream, ice cream or custard.
For Christmas pudding traditionalists, this alternative method will create the best Christmas pudding and the perfect finish to your festive meal for you and your family to enjoy this year. Our recipe and cast iron method, including those six hours steaming, promises mouthwatering results, in the form of a plump, juicy and flavoursome dessert – trust us, it’s worth the wait for the best Christmas Pudding around!