Executive Chef Uddipan Chakravarthy from President (IHCL SeleQtions) in Mumbai shows you how to put together the ultimate Christmas pudding.
For the pudding
1 pound/450 grams (3 to 3 1/2 cups) mixed dried fruit
25 grams (scant 1/2 cup) mixed candied fruit peel, finely chopped
1 small cooking apple, peeled, cored, and finely chopped
1 tablespoon orange zest
1/2 tablespoon lemon zest
2 tablespoons fresh orange juice
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup brandy, more as needed
55 grams (1/2 cup) self-rising flour, sifted
1 teaspoon ground mixed spice
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
110 grams (scant 2/3 cup) dark brown sugar, packed
110 grams (1 cup) fresh breadcrumbs
25 grams (1/4 cup) whole almonds, coarsely chopped
2 large eggs
Blend the fruits, citron, peel, spices and suet and place in a bowl or jar. Add 1/4 cup cognac, cover tightly and refrigerate for 4 days, adding 1/4 cup cognac each day. Soak the bread crumbs in milk and sherry or port. Combine the well-beaten eggs and sugar. Blend with the fruit mixture. Add salt and mix thoroughly. Put the pudding in buttered bowls or tins, filling them about 2/3 full. Cover with foil and tie it firmly. Steam for 6-7 hours. Uncover and place in a 250°F. Oven for 30 minutes. Add a dash of cognac to each pudding, cover with foil and keep in a cool place. To use, steam again for 2-3 hours and unmold. Sprinkle with sugar; add heated cognac. Ignite and bring to the table. Serve with Sabayon sauce.
For the Sabayon sauce
3 egg yolks
25 g (1 ounce) caster sugar
50 ml (2 fl ounce) cognac or sweet sherry
Beat the yolks and sugar together in a heatproof bowl until thick and pale. Gradually whisk in the chosen wine. Add the lemon rind. Pour the mixture into a double saucepan or stand the bowl over a saucepan of simmering water. Cook until thick and creamy, whisking all the time. When the whisk is lifted out of the mixture it should leave a trail that lasts for 2 - 3 seconds. Serve at once.