Plum Pudding

  • Serves

    serves 8


A plum, says Webster's, is "a raisin when used in desserts"; traditional English plum pudding hasn't had real plums in it for generations.


For the Pudding

  • 4 tbsp. unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 eggs
  • 14 cup brandy
  • 1 granny smith apple, peeled, cored, and diced
  • 12 cup dried currants
  • 14 cup raisins
  • 14 cup shelled pecans, chopped
  • 13 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1 cup fresh bread crumbs
  • 12 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 14 tsp. ground cloves
  • Pinch freshly grated nutmeg

For the Brandy Syrup and Hard Sauce

  • 12 cup sugar
  • 1 14 cups brandy
  • 4 tbsp. unsalted butter, softened
  • 34 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 12 tsp. vanilla extract
  • Pinch freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1 tbsp. dark rum


Step 1

For the pudding: Grease eight 6-oz. ramekins with 1 tbsp. of the butter and set aside. Grease eight 3'' squares of foil on one side with 1 tbsp. of the butter and set aside. Melt the remaining 2 tbsp. butter in a small saucepan and set aside to cool slightly.

Step 2

Whisk together eggs and brandy in a medium bowl. Add apples, currants, raisins, pecans, brown sugar, bread crumbs, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, and melted butter and mix well. Divide batter between prepared ramekins. Tightly cover each with prepared foil, buttered side down, and put on a rack set in the bottom of a wide, deep pot with a tight-fitting lid. Add enough boiling water to reach halfway up sides of bowls. Cover pot and steam puddings over medium heat until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, 15–20 minutes.

Step 3

For the brandy syrup: Combine sugar and brandy in a small pot and simmer over medium heat, stirring often, until sugar dissolves and mixture is syrupy, about 5 minutes. Keep warm over lowest heat.

Step 4

For the hard sauce: Put butter, sugar, vanilla, and nutmeg into a mixing bowl and whisk until light and fluffy, about 1 minute. Gradually add rum, whisking constantly, until completely incorporated.

Step 5

Remove puddings from pot, uncover, and invert each onto a dessert dish to unmold. Spoon some of the brandy syrup over each pudding and put a dollop of the hard sauce on top (or put hard sauce into a pastry bag fitted with a star tip and pipe a rosette on top of each).

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