Christmas pudding

Serves: 24
Preparation time: 30 minutes plus soaking overnight
Cooking time: 4 hours, plus reheating



175g raisins
125g currants
200g sultanas
250g chopped dates
125g mixed peel
225g dried apricots, chopped
300ml Guinness beer
60ml rum
grated rind and juice of a lemon
grated rind and juice of an orange
225g butter, at room temperature
350g Huletts treacle sugar
1 green apple, cored and grated
30ml Huletts treacle
3 large eggs
125g self-raising flour
5ml ground mixed spice
10ml ground cinnamon
2ml freshly grated nutmeg
10ml ground ginger
225g fresh white breadcrumbs



  1. Place the raisins, currants, sultantas, dates, mixed peel and apricots into a large mixing bowl.
  2. Pour over the beer, rum, lemon rind and juice, and the orange rind and juice.
  3. Cover the bowl and set aside to soak overnight.
  4. Cream together the butter and sugar until light.
  5. Stir in the grated apple and molasses.
  6. Beat the eggs in one by one, adding 15 ml self-raising flour to help prevent the mixture from curdling.
  7. Fold in the remaining flour and spices.
  8. Add the breadcrumbs and gently fold mixture together.
  9. Stir in soaked fruit, then all make your wishes.
  10. Grease and line 2 x 1 kg pudding basins or 4 x 500 g pudding basins.
  11. Spoon in the mixture.
  12. Cut round lids out of doubled greaseproof paper, allowing a little overhang.
  13. Fold a 1 cm pleat down the centres of the greaseproof circles and cover basins, tying in place with string under rim.
  14. Pleat a piece of foil or muslin in the same way and secure over basins.
  15. Steam for 4 hours, topping up with boiling water as required, or cook in a pressure cooker for 2 hours.
  16. Store pudding until needed, then steam for a further 2-4 hours, or 2 hours in a pressure cooker.