Our recipe for Christmas Pudding with Hard Sauce is a quicker, easier version of the classic British dessert.
3 tablespoons butter, placed in the freezer (one piece)
Butter to grease ramekins
½ cup grated carrot, using small grate on a box grater
1 cup any type of grated potato, using small grate on a box grater
¾ cup golden raisins
½ cup pitted dates, chopped the same size as the raisins
¼ cup walnuts, coarsely chopped
1 egg beaten
¾ cup granulated sugar
¼ cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground cloves
½ teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
Pinch of salt
¼ cup plain bread crumbs, (we used plain Panko)
1 stick unsalted butter
2½ cups confectioner’s sugar
¼ teaspoon lemon extract
About a tablespoon of boiling hot water
Cinnamon, for dusting top of dessert
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
Have a teapot with boiling water standing by.
Cut a single piece of butter from a stick of butter, three tablespoons long and place in freezer for later.
Butter four 8-ounce ramekins with additional butter.
Take a piece of parchment paper and cut a strip off one end about as wide as the opening of one ramekin. Then cut that strip into four and cut each into a round circle and place in the bottom of each buttered ramekin. Butter or spray the top of the parchment and set the ramekins aside. Keep the remaining large piece of parchment for later.
In a large bowl, add carrot, potato (including liquid from potato, don’t squeeze out), raisins, dates, walnuts and egg and mix to combine.
In a separate smaller bowl, add sugar, flour, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, salt and bread crumbs and stir to combine.
Add dry to wet mixture and combine.
Remove butter from freezer and using the small holes on a box greater, grate the frozen butter into the bowl, mixing as you grate.
Divided the mixture between the four prepared ramekins and place each one into a pan, about 9X9 or sized to fit your ramekins.
Pour hot boiling water from tea pot just ¼ of the way up the side of the ramekins. The water is to steam the pudding, not to provide a water bath but it actually serves both purposes.
Cover with the reserved parchment and foil and bake 40 minutes. After 40 minutes, remove foil and parchment and remove ramekins to a rack to sit for five minutes.
While pudding is baking, make hard sauce by mixing butter, powdered sugar and lemon extract to a thick paste. Then add one tablespoon of hot water and stir. The mixture should be very thick but runny enough to pour off the end of a spoon. If still too thick and pasty, add a tiny bit more of hot water.
Place this in a wide topped bowl that will give you room to pull your scoop across the top when serving and refrigerate until serving.
To serve, invert a ramakin onto a small dessert dish and lift. There may be a suction so if needed, insert the tip of a small knife into one side so the pudding falls out upside down onto the plate. Remove the piece of parchment.
Fill a one-ounce scoop of hard sauce and place over pudding then dust with a little cinnamon.