Gifts

A recipe for a special Christmas


 

In our generation of fast food, it can come as a bit of a surprise to think that a traditional British Christmas pudding can be months in the making. My grandmother always used to start her Christmas pudding two months in advance of the big Christmas feast, and come to think of it, we'd be eating that and the Christmas cake for a few months into the New Year too!

Longevity is the key to the success of a truly sensational Christmas pudding that, and the regular addition of a little brandy or rum to let the flavour fully develop! It's also interesting that the secret to both preparation and service of Christmas puddings is all to do with boiling water. Say what you will about the British and their steamed vegetables but steamed Christmas puddings are really a treat!

As for the ingredients found in a traditional Christmas pudding, you're more than likely looking at a list that contains:

  • Flour
  • Eggs
  • Sugar
  • Cinnamon
  • Nutmeg
  • Almonds
  • Lemon zest
  • Mixed dried fruits such as sultanas, raisins, and currants
  • Candied peel

Recipes vary amongst the individual chefs, and a family Christmas pudding recipe can be at times like a closely guarded heirloom! However, there is one item that's certain when it comes to a traditional pud, and that's the inclusion of a small coin. The coin was thought to bring good fortune to the finder in the coming year, yet the practise is fading away with the introduction of alloy coins instead of their silver equivalents. Christmas puddings vary in size from mini-puddings in individual servings that are perfect to include in a Christmas hamper, right up to the massive family-friendly sized serving! To ensure that the pudding remains moist, and to further complement the flavour, custard or brandy butter is a popular topping.

What has become a ritual or tradition in your family for the Christmas celebrations and the festive feast? Many around the world settle down at the table to a roast ham, roast turkey with all the stuffing, or a three bird roast, and for those in the UK it wouldn't be Christmas, strangely enough, without accompanying brussels sprouts and a whole month's worth of mince pies! A clear-cut winner for culinary Christmas suggestions would have to be food hampers however. Easy to cater for the ideal custom-made gift for your loved ones, or a way to extend the seasonal spirit of goodwill to those less fortunate than ourselves, Christmas hampers allow your taste buds run wild with all the best on offer at Christmastime!

 

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