A modern twist on a traditional Christmas classic, this Fig and Ginger Pudding by Lilli Reed is simple to create, with a bit of time up your sleeve and some preparation. The smell of the pudding steaming is enough to feel like Christmas is just around the corner.
250 g butter, at room temp
1 ¼ cup dark brown sugar
2 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp dried ground ginger
1 tsp clove or mixed spice
Zest of one orange, finely grated
2 cups breadcrumbs
1 cup plain flour
1 apple, grated
1/3 cup milk
1 cup dried currants
1 ½ cup raisins
1 cup sultanas
1 cup dried figs, chopped
1 cup chopped glace fruit or mixed peel
1 cup brandy
The night before steaming the pudding, make the fruit mixture. Mix all the ingredients together in a large bowl, stir well until all the fruit is coated by the brandy. Cover tightly and store overnight or up to a week.
Grease (and line the base if required) your pudding basin/steamer (2 litre).
Using a stand-mixer, beat butter and sugar together until smooth and lightened in colour. Add eggs, one at a time - beating in between additions. Add the spices and zest and mix until incorporated.
Transfer the mixture to a large mixing bowl. Add the fruit/brandy mixture, flour, breadcrumbs, apple and milk and mix to combine ensuring everything is evenly incorporated.
Spoon the mixture into your prepared pudding steamer. Place a sheet of baking paper over the steamer, followed by a piece of foil. Secure with the pudding steamer lid. Trim away excess paper and foil. Ensure there is a good seal.
Place the pudding steamer in a large saucepan with enough boiling water to come halfway up the sides of the steamer. Cover the saucepan with a lid and steam for 4 hours. Ensure to check every so often, to top up the water levels if needed.
Stand the pudding for 30 minutes before turning out.
Notes: Pudding can be made up to 3 weeks in advance. Store tightly covered in baking paper, then foil, or alternatively freeze for up to 6 months. If the pudding is frozen, thaw for one full day. You can return the pudding to the steamer for 1 hour (following the recipe’s instructions), prior to serving. Serve pudding with custard, cream, or ice-cream.