Plum Pudding

I decided to make my plum pudding this week. It took several calls to my mother to ask specifics about the recipe. The recipe came from my Grandma (Ma) Erickson and she wasn't always very exact on her recipes. For example, the ingredients called for 'small cups' of some things, big teaspoons of soda, and enough flour to make it stiff. My mother shared some directions that weren't in the recipe which I am sure were necessary for success.

The first step was to cut up the suet. My mother said she always has the butcher grind it when she buys it, so I will have to remember that for next year. The suet is important because it is the fat or oil in the pudding.
The recipe calls for regular raisins and seeded raisins. We can't find seeded raisins anymore so my mom suggested dates as a substitute. That works well.

The dry ingredients look like this when mixed together.
But you then add molasses for flavor and sweetness. Then you gradually add enough flour to make it still. I measured 3 3/4 cups of flour.

The batter is then put on a floured muslin cloth. My mother mailed me her trusted plum pudding cloth.
You tie the pudding very tightly with a piece of cloth and you're ready to go.
Now we get to the tricky part. You lower the pudding into a pan of boiling water. You can never let the water stop boiling because it will make a soggy pudding. As the water keeps boiling away, you must add boiling water. That means you have two pans of water heating.
Once you cover this, just keep a sharp eye on it for the next 5 hours!
Your pudding expands and becomes very firm but it is done.
The water left in the pan is used to make the sauce for the pudding. You add butter, flour, nutmeg and lots of brown sugar.

This was my completed pudding. It tasted great although, it is an acquired taste. My sister Kathy is coming over tonight to have plum pudding for her birthday. Most people aren't that enthusiastic about it.

Plum pudding isn't something you will make very often but it is a real treat for me.

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