It seems Christmas Pudding and Christmas Cake is something you either love..... or not.  I have not had Christmas Pudding or Cake in many many many years, and I absolutely love them both.
(the above picture is not mine - I won't be able to unveil my picture until Dec.24th so will keep everyone posted on the success of this endeavor)  In the meantime - here is how this Christmas Pudding was created. (I am 99% positive it will be a winner. The batter had just the right consistency you know?)
Before beginning this post I must give a huge thank you to a few people.  This recipe was inspired by a Gluten Free Christmas Pudding recipe from Jamie Oliver's site - so many many thanks for creating a gluten free version of this wonderful Christmas Pudding.  Secondly, a huge thank you to Mairead of the blog Irish American Mom.  I took many tips from her recipe and in particular on how to steam the pudding using a crock pot.  Ingenious yes?  Please check out Mairead's recipe - an excellent tutorial and post.
Then I found the answer here on how to store your Christmas pudding.  I wanted to store it in the same container as I will be reheating it on Christmas Eve to serve with Vanilla Custard.  As mentioned previously, I will show pictures of the end result on Dec. 24th - soooo excited!
In terms of this gluten free recipe, I did make a number of changes, as well as changing the method so will do a recap here. Plus the original recipe is in grams.  While I do have a scale, the grams are somewhat difficult to read/measure - so this recipe is converted into cups.  I used a 1.5 liter aluminum Christmas Pudding baking pan, and Mairead uses glass mixing bowls which work very well too.
It is a bit late in the year to make a Christmas Pudding - but oh well, it should be fine anyways.  (I made mine on Nov. 28/16) I have read you can actually make Christmas Pudding a few days before Christmas, but doing it earlier of course will enrich the flavors.
Next:  typically Christmas pudding is made with Brandy.  It just so happened, my dtr. & I attended a Christmas Craft show, where we found this:
The Wayward Order has created this spiced honey liqueur  made locally in Courtney B.C.  Wow what flavor.  It has such a touching write up on the bottle it is worth sharing here:
On the back of the bottle it says:  "Our Wayward Krupnik is a deeply aromatic blend of spices, citrus and wild B.C. honey delicately blended with our hand-crafted honey spirit to create a superbly rich and soul-warming liqueur.  Let the opulent tradition of this drink seep into your bones.  Krupnik is 100% natural."
"CRAFTED BY HAND IN RIDICULOUSLY SMALL BATCHES".   You gotta love it!  By the way, it tastes wonderful - and with the subtle flavors of spice and citrus it is perfect for Christmas Pudding. Plus, it is completely GLUTEN FREE!
Apparently Krupnik has just recently been released, so they did not have large batches available.  Next year I will definitely be getting some more.
2/3 cup currants
3/4 cup sour cherries - from canned in a jar (I roughly chopped the cherries and used the extra juice from chopping them)
1/4 cup raisins
1/4 cup cranberries
1/3 cup chopped dates
Juice and zest from 1 lime
Juice and zest from 1/2 a large orange
1/3 cup mixed peel
5 Tblsp. Earl Grey tea - cooled
1/2 tsp. pumpkin spice
1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
3 1/2 Tblsp. Krupnik or Brandy
3/4 cup Coconut sugar
1/2 a large apple - grated
1/3 cup roughly chopped walnuts
1/3 cup Almond flour
Just slightly under 3/4 cup Gluten Free Bread Crumbs (I used Udi's bread to make the breadcrumbs)
1 tsp. gluten free baking powder
1/2 cup unsalted butter
pinch of salt
2 large organic eggs plus 1 large egg yoke
1 tsp. vanilla
24 hours ahead of time: in a large glass bowl combine the first 13 ingredients, including any juice from chopping the cherries.  Mix well, cover and let sit 24 hours.
The next day (to measure how much water you will need in your crock pot) put your Christmas Pudding baking pan into a large crock pot (mine is a 7 quart) and fill the crock pot with hot hot water to measure 3/4 up the sides of your  pan.  Remove the pan and set the crock pot on high to bring to a boil.  Mine took a good hour plus to reach to temperature.
Grease your baking pan with butter and cut out a piece of parchment paper to fit the top of your pan.  Lightly grease the parchment with butter.
Next: add the chopped walnuts and grated apple to the fruit - mixing well.  In a separate bowl, whisk the almond flour, baking powder and breadcrumbs and set aside.
In another bowl beat the butter and sugar - it will be lumpy.  In a smaller bowl beat the eggs well, with a hand mixer then add to the butter/sugar mixture with the vanilla.  Beat well with the hand mixer.  Add the dry ingredients to the egg/sugar mixture stirring well with a wooden spoon, then add in the fruit and all the liquid again mixing well.  Pour into your prepared Christmas Pudding baking pan and top with the buttered parchment paper.
Cover the pan with a tight fitting lid, then wrap the pan in tin foil twice to completely wrap and secure the baking pan.  Tie well with kitchen string leaving a bow at the top for easy, careful removal after steaming.
I followed Mairead's instructions for steaming the pudding in a 7 quart crock pot:  1 hr. on high, and then 6 hr.'s on low.  Check half way through cooking time and if necessary top up the crock pot with more boiling water.
Here is a picture of the cooled Christmas Pudding still in the container:  (whooo hooo this is so gonna be good!)  At this point, once completely cooled, resize a lightly buttered piece of parchment paper to fit over the pudding.  Top with the lid, then wrap tightly twice in plastic wrap, then re-wrap twice in tin foil.  Store in a cool dry space. In the next post I will give information on reheating the pudding.
Stay tuned...for updates of the unveiling of my very first Gluten Free Christmas Pudding with Vanilla Custard - hopefully on Dec. 24/16.  Many thanks again to Jamie Oliver's site, to Mairead of the blog, Irish American Mom, and to the Wayward Order...this could not have been done without you.  🙂

Ina Gawne
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    1. Sophie - we do not have this tradition in Denmark is an English tradition. We are looking forward to having it on Christmas Eve. 🙂

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November 28, 2016