Cooking With Catherine-Christmas Pudding and Brandy Butter

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Welcome back chefs! I can’t believe that it is the beginning of November already and the Holiday season is just around the corner. With the weather getting cooler and the meals getting heartier, it is a great time to start planning your Christmas meal. A classic British dessert and Middleton favorite that is sure to wow your guests is Christmas Pudding with brandy butter from Pippa’s book Celebrate. This dessert is similar to a fruit cake and was traditionally made with thirteen ingredients to represent Christ and the twelve apostles. A coin was also added to the ingredients and was said to bring wealth to whoever found it! With all of the time and preparation it takes to make this, I can definitely see Kate and Pippa joining forces in the kitchen while spreading a little Christmas cheer!

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Stirring the Christmas Pudding via Pippa Middleton’s Celebrate

*Please note that this pudding must be made a month in advance so that the flavors have time to develop*

Ingredients: (serves 8-10)

  • 1 1/3 pounds of chopped mixed dried fruit
  • 4 oz of candied citrus peel
  • 1 large peeled and grated cooking apple
  • 2 teaspoons each of pumpkin pie spice and ground cinnamon
  • finely grated zest and juice of 1 lemon
  • 3/4 cup of packed soft brown sugar
  • 5 oz of halved glace cherries
  • 1 large peeled grated carrot
  • 1 1/2 cups of ground almonds
  • 2 tablespoons of molasses
  • 1/3 cup of all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup of shortening
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt
  • 2/3 cup of brandy or Calvados
  • 1/4 cup of stout or dark ale
  • 2 beaten eggsphoto (66)


  1. In a large bowl, mix all of the ingredients together
  2. Leave mixture for two hours or preferably overnight

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3.  Pour the mixture into a 1-quart high-sided deep bowl and cover securely with a lid or foil.

4. Put a metal trivet or rack in the bottom of a large saucepan, fill it half full of water and bring it to a simmer.

5.  Carefully lower the pudding bowl into the pan and rest it on the trivet.

6. Cover, and adjust heat to maintain a gentle boil.

7. Steam the pudding, filling the pan as necessary with more water so the bowl is partially submerged for 7 hours.

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8. Store in a cool, dry dark place until Christmas Day. To reheat, steam again for 1 to  2 hours until completely warmed through. Enjoy with brandy butter.

Brandy butter ingredients (serves 8-10)

  • 2 sticks of unsalted butter
  • finely grated zest of 1 orange
  • 1/4 cup of packed soft light brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup of brandy


  1. Mix butter, orange zest, and brown sugar until thoroughly combined.
  2. Gradually add the brandy while mixing until you have a creamy, smooth paste. (this will keep in the fridge for up to 4 days)


When I first heard that I would be tackling this recipe, I was a bit intimidated to be honest. Made a month in advance? Steaming for 7 hours? This sounded very intense! While it definitely was a labor of love, I admired all of the tradition it is steeped in and look forward to perfecting my method over the years. It didn’t come out perfectly but I was pleased for my first try. The flavors are plentiful and it has a rich, warm, earthy taste. So don’t be scared to tackle this recipe, it is what Kate would do!

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