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Recipe

Christmas pudding with honeycomb

This Nici Wickes Christmas pudding is crammed full of cranberries, currants and raisins, and topped with homemade honeycomb for wow factor. Impress your guests with this incredible creation.

By Nici Wickes
  • 30 mins preparation
  • 3 hrs cooking
  • 2 hrs marinating
  • Serves 10
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Ingredients

  • 1 cup dried cranberries, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 cup dried golden raisins
  • 1/2 cup dried currants
  • 1/2 cup walnut pieces
  • 1/2 cup orange juice or brandy
  • 75 gram olive oil spread (or 75ml olive oil)
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1 cup plain flour
  • 1/2 cup ground almonds
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 cup molasses (or golden syrup)
  • 2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/3 cup boiling water
Honeycomb
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoon golden syrup
  • 2 tablespoon honey
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 teaspoon baking soda
Custard
  • 2 cup non-dairy milk (almond or coconut milk), plus 3 tbsp extra
  • 2 tablespoon heaped tbsp sugar (can use coconut sugar)
  • 2 tablespoon custard powder
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Method

  • 1
    Combine the dried fruit, walnut pieces and orange juice in a bowl, then leave for 2 hours so the fruit softens.
  • 2
    Beat together the olive oil spread and brown sugar. Stir in the flour, almonds and spices.
  • 3
    In a small jug, mix together the molasses, baking soda and boiling water, then pour over the dried fruit mix. Add this mixture to the spread/dry ingredients, stirring to combine.
  • 4
    Grease a 6-cup pudding basin with cooking oil. Place a circle of baking paper in the bottom. Pour in the mixture to three- quarters full. Place another circle of greased baking paper on top. Cover the pudding bowl with a pleated piece of baking paper, then tinfoil, and tie with string or, even better, an old stocking.
  • 5
    Place the pudding bowl in a large saucepan, onto a folded tea towel (this stops it clanging as it simmers). Add enough water to come two-thirds up the side of the bowl. Cover and simmer on low to medium heat for 2½ to 3 hours, checking the water level every 30 minutes and topping up as needed. When steamed, a skewer will come out cleanly.
  • 6
    If serving now, cool for 10 minutes, then unmould onto a plate, pour over custard and sprinkle with honeycomb.
Honeycomb
  • 7
    Line a 20cm tin with baking paper.
  • 8
    Combine the sugar, golden syrup, honey and water in a medium saucepan. Bring to a simmer, swirling until sugar is dissolved, then bring to the boil for 3-4 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in the baking soda. Once mixture froths, pour into the tin. Cool before breaking into pieces.
Custard
  • 9
    In a medium saucepan, bring milk and sugar to a tremble (a near boil).
  • 10
    In a small bowl, mix extra milk with custard powder and vanilla until smooth.
  • 11
    Whisk into hot milk and keep stirring until mixture thickens, making sure there are no lumps.

Notes

The pudding can be made several days or weeks in advance – once steamed, cool it, then unmould, wrap in cling film and return it to the pudding basin, storing in the fridge or freezer. To reheat the pudding, unwrap and thaw, cover, then re-steam for 45 minutes.

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