For those of you like my friend Dr Spo in Phoenix who wonder if Christmas is near, well after Thanksgiving back on the first Monday in October, we all know there is Halloween but heck it’s time to plan and set dates and menus. Just this past weekend we went to two cocktail parties and two dinner parties. We have already planned our Christmas Eve and Day, menus set etc… For New Year’s Eve 2020 things are in motion and should be well organized fairly soon.
Today Will and I were looking at Nigel Slater’s recipe for Plum Pudding. He is a British Chef and we love his recipes. He writes for the Guardian newspaper in London. So off to the Bulk Barn to buy all the fruits needed for the Plum ”Christmas” Pudding. Buying these ingredients, it really put me into the mood. Next Sunday 24 November is stir up Sunday so time to start the process.
- 350g/12¼oz sultanas
- 350g/12¼oz raisins or currants
- 150g/5¼oz dried figs, chopped
- 125g/4½oz candied peel
- 100g/3½oz dried apricots
- 75g/2½oz dark glacé cherries, halved
- 150ml/5fl oz brandy
- 100g/3½oz ginger in syrup, chopped, plus 2 tbsp of the syrup
- 2 apples grated
- 2 oranges, juice and zest
- 6 eggs, beaten
- 250g/8¾oz shredded suet
- 350g/12¼oz soft muscovado sugar
- 250g/8¾oz fresh breadcrumbs
- 175g/6¼oz self-raising flour
- 1 tsp mixed spice
- 2 old sixpences or coins
For this recipe you will need two 1.5 litre(2½ pint) plastic pudding basins with lids.
Soak the sultanas, raisins, currants, figs, peel, apricots and cherries in the brandy overnight, giving it a good stir now and again.
The following day, in a large bowl mix the ginger, syrup, apples, orange juice and zest with the eggs, suet, sugar, crumbs and flour.
Stir in the soaked fruit and spice.
Grease the two pudding basins and divide the mix between them. Add coins now if using.
Cut two circles of greaseproof paper to cover the top of the pudding and fold a pleat down the centre to allow pudding to expand.
Put lids on the basins and steam puddings for 3½ hours.
Let puddings cool before removing greaseproof paper and covering tightly with cling film and lid. The puddings can now be stored in a cool, dry place until Christmas.
To reheat, steam pudding for a further 3½ hours, turn out and flame with brandy.
Can’t wait to flame the pudding, such a treat.
I also added this recipe by Nigel because it is not Christmas without Stilton Cheese.
Stilton Cheese for me always brings back wonderful memories of Christmas and stops on the way home in London to shop. The quality and variety on offer in London is truly amazing. In Rome Christmas shopping was wonderful for wines and quality chocolates, cheeses, meats, olives, etc… Munich and Dresden Christmas Markets loads of fun, great food and tons of atmosphere. In Warsaw we had the most beautiful trees and again all the special Christmas food much of it borrowed from Jewish European Cuisine. Copenhagen was also great for Christmas Shopping so many beautiful things in the shops, style and elegance.
Also this year we have decided to return to good old fashion Christmas Cards and mail them with postage stamps to friends. We had been doing a lot of electronic cards in the last 10 years and well it is not the same and we enjoy receiving cards in the mail, it is so much more personal.
Finally today we went to the Pharmacy to get our Free Flu shot. In Canada everyone can, if you want get a free Flu Shot. It takes minutes and that is it, simple, how civilized.
So yesterday I took a little nap on the sofa and my Nicky wanted to snuggle up and he, like all Dachshund loves to squeeze in, so there with his big nose breathing in my face. He is just keeping an eye on me.
The Cows Ice Cream shop love to sell souvenirs in the form of T-Shirts, Sweaters, caps etc. All of them have a funny saying on them and I saw this one in the window and I thought this is the sort of thing you want for Christmas, you know for that special cousin.