Christmas Plum Pudding With Brandied Cider Sauce

Often confused with fruitcake, this classic Christmas dessert tastes more like a rich, dense spice cake.

Quick look

  • prep 25 min    cook 2 hrs
  • serves 8

This version uses butter instead of the traditional suet and can be made with your choice of candied fruit, currants, or raisins.

Ingredients

  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon grated orange rind
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup butter or margarine, at room temperature
  • 4 large egg whites
  • 1/2 cup apple cider or apple juice
  • 3/4 cup raisins
  • 1/2 cup shredded carrot
  • 1/3 cup candied cherries, halved, or currants or raisins
  • 1/3 cup chopped candied pineapple, currants, or raisins
  • 1/3 cup pecan halves
  • Brandied Cider Sauce (recipe follows)
  • Vanilla ice cream (optional)

    How to make it  2 hours, 25 minutes


  • 1

    Lightly grease a 1 1/2-quart steamed-pudding mold or casserole; set aside. Stir together the flour, orange rind, cinnamon, baking powder, ginger and cloves in a medium bowl.

  • 2

    Beat brown sugar and butter together in a large bowl on medium speed until light and fluffy, scraping side of bowl often. Add egg whites and beat well. Using a wooden spoon, stir in one-third of the flour mixture, then half of the apple cider. Repeat, then stir in the remaining flour mixture. Stir in the raisins, carrot, cherries, pineapple, and pecans.

  • 3

    Spoon batter evenly into the prepared mold. Cover mold with foil. Tie foil in place with string.

  • 4

    Place mold on a rack in a Dutch oven. Carefully pour boiling water into the Dutch oven until the water is halfway up the side of the mold.

  • 5

    Cook, covered, over low heat 2 to 2 1/2 hours or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

  • 6

    Place mold upright on a wire rack and let stand 10 minutes.

  • 7

    Using a narrow metal spatula, loosen side of plum pudding from mold, then invert pudding onto a serving plate.

  • 8

    Serve warm with Brandied Cider Sauce; top with vanilla ice cream, if desired. (Can be made ahead. Cover pudding with foil and refrigerate up to 1 week. To reheat: Steam as directed in step 4 for 1 hour or until heated through.)

Brandied Cider Sauce

  • 3/4 cup apple cider or apple juice
  • 1/4 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons brandy or apple juice
  • 1 teaspoon butter or margarine

    How to make it 

  • 1

    Whisk together apple cider, brown sugar and cornstarch in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium heat, whisking constantly. Cook 2 minutes or until thickened, whisking constantly. Remove from heat; stir in brandy and butter. Makes about 3/4 cup.

Hungry for the best food ideas?

Get our weekly Food Reads newsletter

Sending Message
how we use your e-mail