Gluten-free Christmas pudding

Gluten-free Christmas pudding
  • Serves icon Serves 8-10
  • Time icon Hands-on 30 min, simmering time 4 hours and 2 hours, plus steeping

In this wonderful gluten-free Christmas pudding recipe, there’s nothing taken out and you’ll find no strange ingredients or special flour mixes – just ground almonds and a little cornflour. The result is rich, yet wonderfully light.

Nutrition: per serving

Calories
432kcals
Fat
19.2g (1.7g saturated)
Protein
9.1g
Carbohydrates
49g (43.5g sugars)
Fibre
2.3g
Salt
0.2g
Calories
432kcals
Fat
19.2g (1.7g saturated)
Protein
9.1g
Carbohydrates
49g (43.5g sugars)
Fibre
2.3g
Salt
0.2g

Per serving (for 10)

Ingredients

  • 100g currants
  • 
100g sultanas
  • 
100g dried sour cherries
  • 
Grated zest and juice
  • 1 lemon
  • Grated zest and juice
  • ½ orange
  • 1 tsp ground mixed spice
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp freshly grated nutmeg
  • 
100ml cognac or brandy
  • 180g dark muscovado sugar
  • 
1 granny smith apple, grated
  • 1 large carrot, grated
  • 250g ground almonds
  • 50g gluten-free cornflour
  • 1 tsp gluten-free baking powder
  • 
2 medium free-range eggs
  • 50ml vegetable oil, plus extra for greasing
  • 2 tbsp black treacle
  • 
Brandy cream or custard to serve

You will also need

  • 
2 litre pudding basin
  • Kitchen string

Method

  1. In a large bowl, combine all the dried fruit, citrus zests and juices, the spices and alcohol. Cover with cling film and leave for 24 hours.
  2. When the fruit has steeped, mix in the sugar, apple and carrot with a wooden spoon until well combined.
  3. In a medium bowl, combine the ground almonds, cornflour and baking powder with a pinch of salt.
  4. Using an electric mixer, beat the eggs one at a time into the soaked fruit mixture, then stir in the oil and treacle (see tip). Finally, stir in the ground almond mixture until everything is well combined.
  5. Grease a 2 litre pudding basin with a little oil, cut a disc of baking paper large enough to line the bottom of the basin and press it down into it. Spoon in the pudding mixture – the basin should be two thirds full. Cover the top of the pudding with a disc of baking paper, then cover the top of the basin with a large sheet of baking paper and a large sheet of foil, both with pleats in. (To fold and secure, see the instructions in know-how.)
  6. Once you’ve covered the basin, put an empty cardboard egg box (see tip) in the bottom of a large, deep, lidded saucepan big enough to comfortably hold the pudding. Sit the pudding on top, nestling it down slightly, then pour boiling water into the pan (not over the basin) so it comes just over halfway up the basin. Put the lid on, put the pan over a low-medium heat and simmer gently for 4 hours, checking the water level every so often, topping up with boiled water when it drops below halfway.
  7. Once the pudding has steamed, remove from the pan and leave to cool. Store in a cool dry place until ready to serve (see make ahead).
  8. To serve, set up the saucepan as in step 6. Simmer the pudding gently for 2 hours, then remove from the pan and leave to stand for 10 minutes. Remove the wrappings, then invert onto a serving plate. Remove the paper disc, flame the pudding if you like (see tips), then serve with a sauce or butter – see below.

delicious. tips

  1. Dip a metal spoon in boiling water just before spooning out the treacle in step 4 and it will drop easily from the spoon. Use an undyed (grey) egg box in step 6 as a coloured one may stain your pan or pudding basin.

    You can also make this mixture into 2 x 1kg puddings. Keep the steaming time the same.

    To flame the pudding, put it on a lipped plate (not a flat one as pictured here). Heat a small ladle of brandy over a gas flame, then light it with a match and pour over the pudding.

    Cornflour and baking powder are usually gluten-free but can contain wheat based anti-caking agents, so check the list of ingredients.

  2. Make the pudding and give it its first steam up to 3 months in advance. Keep in its foil wrapper in a cool, dark, dry place.

  3. How to seal the basin:
    a) Cover the pudding basin with a sheet of baking paper and a sheet of foil, folding in the middle to make a pleat to allow the pudding to expand during cooking.
    b) Fold the foil and paper down around the pudding basin.
    c) Pinch the foil tightly around the rim.
    d) Wrap a length of string around the rim.
    e) Tie in a double bow. Done.

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