Etiquette Hell

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Title: Plum Puddings for Christmas.
Post by: Thipu1 on November 25, 2012, 10:40:21 AM
In my family, a Crosse & Blackwell plum pudding was a Christmas must.  It was always served with hard sauce.  My mother steamed it before serving.

Do you have a Christmas Pudding?

Title: Re: Plum Puddings for Christmas.
Post by: Outdoor Girl on November 25, 2012, 11:09:03 AM
Mom made her own - it was a carrot based pudding, no plums involved!  And she served it with a choice of hard sauce or brown sugar sauce.

They were steamed while they baked and then she froze them.  They were steamed again before serving.

I have the recipe but I haven't made them since she died.  I found out that no one in my family cares for it, except for me.  So now we have raspberry pie for Christmas dessert, instead.
Title: Re: Plum Puddings for Christmas.
Post by: Shotochick on November 25, 2012, 01:09:00 PM
I make my own using an adapted version of my Grandmothers recipe, served flamed with brandy custard on the side, and shots of Christmas Pudding Vodka (because in Oz you cant get enough booze at Xmas).

I blogged a version of it here ---> http://aussiefoodie.blogspot.co.uk/2010/11/booze-riddled-christmas-pudding.html (http://aussiefoodie.blogspot.co.uk/2010/11/booze-riddled-christmas-pudding.html)

Title: Re: Plum Puddings for Christmas.
Post by: Free Range Hippy Chick on November 25, 2012, 01:10:44 PM
Mine is boiling as I type. It'll steam until I go to bed tonight, and then tomorrow it gets wrapped in greaseproof paper, ready to be resteamed on Christmas Day. I've got several recipes including one I made up myself which makes about six puddings. We always had brandy butter rather than hard sauce, but DH doesn't like it so now we have cream with orange liqueur in. I even have one of those globe moulds to make it in!

Dinner tonight we ate the last one from last year, out of the freezer. Yum.

The carrots thing isn't unusual - think carrot cake - but I suspect it may also have been a left-over from war time rationing when carrots were a quick way to sweeten something. I have several Christmas pudding recipes using carrots.
Title: Re: Plum Puddings for Christmas.
Post by: veryfluffy on November 25, 2012, 05:12:36 PM
I've never heard of "hard sauce" , so I googled it. It sounds like what is called brandy butter here.
Title: Re: Plum Puddings for Christmas.
Post by: kckgirl on November 25, 2012, 05:42:05 PM
I've heard of plum pudding but never really tried to find out what it is. I'm glad you brought it up. Based on the ingredients in the recipe I read, it sounds really good.
Title: Re: Plum Puddings for Christmas.
Post by: Free Range Hippy Chick on November 26, 2012, 02:41:21 AM
Our hard sauce had no alcohol in it, so that was a non-starter in our household, like Shotochick's.

There was nearly a disaster last night because I forgot to turn the cooker off before I went to bed. Fortunately I couldn't sleep, and remembered at one in the morning, just before it boiled dry.
Title: Re: Plum Puddings for Christmas.
Post by: mechtilde on November 26, 2012, 03:15:44 AM
I always use Marguerite Patten's recipe in fact I really ought to get cracking on it, instead of being here on E-Hell...
Title: Re: Plum Puddings for Christmas.
Post by: oz diva on November 26, 2012, 03:40:08 AM
A good friend of my mums always makes one for us. It's delicious and flaming it is always a highlight of the Christmas lunch.

My Grandmother used to boil her massive pudding in the old copper. Which doubled as the clothes washer.
Title: Re: Plum Puddings for Christmas.
Post by: Brisvegasgal on November 26, 2012, 05:12:11 AM
We don't have a Christmas pudding (unless cherries & ice cream counts), but we do have a Christmas tipple. Margarita punch - Margarita with lemonade and lashings of crushed ice.
Title: Re: Plum Puddings for Christmas.
Post by: mechtilde on November 26, 2012, 05:19:34 AM
I've heard of plum pudding but never really tried to find out what it is. I'm glad you brought it up. Based on the ingredients in the recipe I read, it sounds really good.

It can be called Christmas pudding too.
Title: Re: Plum Puddings for Christmas.
Post by: oz diva on November 26, 2012, 05:37:57 AM
I should make my Christmas cake soon, too.
Title: Re: Plum Puddings for Christmas.
Post by: mechtilde on November 26, 2012, 06:44:28 AM
Mine's in the oven as I write, but I'm out of lemons so I'll need to get some more before I can make the pudding. I'm thinking about doing them in the slow cooker this time, but I've never tried it before and will probably end up doing them in the steamer again (I'm making two)
Title: Re: Plum Puddings for Christmas.
Post by: Free Range Hippy Chick on November 26, 2012, 07:51:08 AM
Did the cake last week, and I've just found a supply of last year's mincemeat! I don't really like the bought stuff, it always seems to me to have far too much fat, far too much sugar, far too little spice and far far too little brandy  ;D but year old home made? Should be fabulous. (Which is not to say that there's anything wrong with the bought stuff - just that I don't like it. In an emergency I've been known to buy a jar of a decent brand and stir in some more spices and a wallop of alcohol, and just carry on.)

By the way, last year one of the celebrity chefs, can't remember which one, recommended keeping a jar of Mixed Christmas Spice Mix by the cooker: a clean jam jar and then tip in as much as you like of allspice, cinnamon, ground cloves, ground nutmeg, mace, cardamom, black pepper, ginger, ground coriander, whichever spices you like in whatever proportion you like, and then using it to pep up whatever you were cooking. The suggestions were for a little bit in gravy, lots in mince pies, either added to the mincemeat or mixed into the pastry, stirred into cream and heated to make sauce either sweet or savoury, added to hot milk or hot chocolate, used to mull wine or cider... I tried it, and it's on my list to do again this year.
Title: Re: Plum Puddings for Christmas.
Post by: mechtilde on November 26, 2012, 08:39:52 AM
I'm a relatively recent allspice fan!
Title: Re: Plum Puddings for Christmas.
Post by: Thipu1 on November 26, 2012, 08:51:26 AM
I've never heard of "hard sauce" , so I googled it. It sounds like what is called brandy butter here.

Yes, hard sauce is similar to brandy butter.  It's white, thick and sweet but has a definite alcoholic kick.  I don't know if it's even legal to sell the stuff in grocery stores here these days. 
Title: Re: Plum Puddings for Christmas.
Post by: Free Range Hippy Chick on November 26, 2012, 10:36:11 AM
Somebody needs to organise a major Christmas Pudding Sauce tasting. I just went 'white? WHITE? If that's white it's not at all like brandy butter, it can't have half enough brandy in' before it occurred to me that it was probably made with white sugar. My brandy butter is dark brown sugar, butter and as much brandy as you can get in without the whole thing splitting. And still DH doesn't like it... I like it with hot mince pies too.

(Wonders about adding something from the Pimp My Christmas spice jar to brandy butter.)
Title: Re: Plum Puddings for Christmas.
Post by: doodlemor on November 30, 2012, 10:03:44 PM
When I was newly married many years ago I made Christmas puddings for DH and his family from his grandmother's recipe, in her memory.  Grandma had been born in England, and we always assumed that this was a family recipe.

I remember that it had dates, chopped suet, and probably nuts.  I bought some pretty molds and steamed it for hours.  I served it with a sauce made from orange juice and rind, sugar, and cornstarch, because that is what Grandma had done.

I think that I stopped making it when I discovered that the date cake recipe in my Better Homes and Gardens cookbook tasted nearly the same when I put the sauce on top, and was much easier and less messy to the stove top.

Maybe I'll get the recipe out and try this again.  It certainly was delicious!