I’m not a big fan of Christmas Pudding. But I am a big fan of traditions. Whether it’s keeping them going or starting a new like we did with advent last year, I think it’s important to remember the past as we step into the new.
So this year we visited Grandma Sue to make our Christmas Pudding.
The pudding originates in England and was also called Plum Pudding according to this old book. This is because of the prunes that were key ingredients. It’s made five weeks before Christmas to let all the flavours mellow and ripen.
Preparing our bowls
Strong, steam proof bowls are essential and Grandma suggested a bit of greaseproof paper to line the base.
Measuring all the ingredients
My girls love measuring and have inherited by accuracy on the scales so this took rather a long time because they wanted it exactly right. traditional the pudding has thirteen ingredients to represent Jesus Christ and his disciples
A welcome distraction
There was a lot of ingredients to measure – sultanas, raisins, currants, sugar, butter, flour….they got a bit side tracked making flies with Granddad for next year’s fishing trip!
On to the very important stirring
Families would come home from church on Stir Up Sunday and stir the pudding from East to West in honour of the three wise men who travelled to meet Baby Jesus. As they stirred, they prayed:
“Stir Up, we beseech thee. Oh Lord the wills of thy people. That they plenteously bring forth the fruit of good works, may of thee be pleanteously rewarded, through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.”
I’m pretty sure Amber was singing her own mixing song. Maybe one day she’ll share it with us all.
Placement of the silver coin for wealth
Many households used to stir silver coins into the mixture for wealth or even an array of other objects with different meanings. Tiny wishbones for good luck, a silver thimble for thrift, a ring for marriage, or an anchor for safe harbor. When the pudding is served at Christmas, whoever got the lucky serving, would be able to keep the charm. I think my girls were hinting at the idea of getting pocket money!
And that was that. We steamed the pudding for a couple of hours and now it’s sitting in a secret dark and cool place until Christmas Day. We’ll steam it again to warm it through and add a little sprig of holly before digging it.
This is the simplest cooking the children have ever done and even I amlooking forward to trying this pudding. There’s something special about making your own.