Cheating at Christmas

Each year the Borough Market lets me take over the demonstration kitchen and cook something for Christmas. It’s a great opportunity to get out there and tell people about Christmas and what’s happening at the Cathedral and, of course, share a useful recipe with people. Today was the day!

Cooking and talking complete with halos!

Cooking and talking complete with halos!

This year it was Christmas Pudding that was our focus. Traditionally it was made on Stir-Up Sunday – the Sunday before Advent, the last in the church’s year. That name comes from the collect in the Book of Common Prayer for that Sunday.

Stir up, we beseech thee, O Lord, the wills of thy faithful people; that they, plenteously bringing forth the fruit of good works, may by thee be plenteously rewarded; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

But what if you just don’t get your act together and miss out on making one? Well, you could buy one of course – but you might want to present a home made pudding to your family. So I have a solution for you. I found the recipe on the BBC’s Good Food pages and it is simple and delicious.

The Cheat’s Christmas Pudding Recipe

Ingredients
Butter for greasing
300g good quality mincemeat
140 g fine shred orange marmalade
200g molasses cane sugar
4 tbsp treacle
4 tbsp whisky
100 g butter, frozen and coarsely grated
200g self-raising flour

Method
Grease a 1.5l pudding basin with butter and line the base with greaseproof paper.
In a large bowl, stir the ingredients together, adding them one at a time in the order they are listed, until everything is completely mixed.
Tip the pudding mix into the basin and cover with a circle of greaseproof paper.
Microwave on medium for 20 – 25 minutes until cooked. An inserted skewer should come out clean.
Leave to stand for five minutes, then turn out on a plate and flambe with brandy.
Serve with brandy butter and cream.

Now, how easy is that! Remember that it has to be on medium in the microwave otherwise you’ll have a disaster on your hands. But it saves at least 9 hours of steaming and that must be a good thing.

It isn’t really cheating and it is delicious and as rich and wonderful as the feast we are about to celebrate.

God of abundant goodness,
for your amazing love
revealed in the birth of Jesus
we give you thanks and praise.
Amen.

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