Now that the dried fruit has soaked up all the alcohol it's time to make the pudding.
To the fruit add 1 cup of fresh breadcrumbs. I prefer to make my own using a nice grainy bread. I remove the crusts and put it through the food processor. Because the crumbs are so light push them down in the measuring cup. Not too much though! I add 1 teaspoon of cinnamon, 1 teaspoon of ground ginger,1 teaspoon of mixed spice, 1 cup of raw sugar, 2 eggs,1/2 cup of blanched slivered almonds, 100 grams of melted, softened butter, 2 tablespoons of brandy and a cup of plain flour.
The secret to how moist this pudding is comes from the next ingredient. Take two granny smith apples, peel them and grate them into the mixture. I find the easiest way to do this is to peel the apples,and then using them whole, just grate them down to the core, which I discard.
Mix the ingredients together well. If it seems too wet just add a little flour, but it is a very wet looking mixture.
I use a Corning ware dish to cook it in. One that has a lid,but any microwave proof glass or ceramic container is suitable.
Grease the container very well with butter.
Put the mixture in the container and press it down firmly with a spatula. Gently bang the container on the bench top to knock out any air spaces.
Now the easy part, put it in the microwave for ten minutes. Take it out, cover it and let it stand for about 5 minutes.
As you can see it still looks wet in the middle. It goes back in the microwave for another 10 minutes.
I took mine out at the end of this and it still looked a little wet in the middle so I put it back in microwave for another 3 minutes with the top on. If you don't have a container with a lid I would just use microwave film or just put a plate on top of your container.
It smells wonderful!
I will just let it cool and then cover it tightly with food wrap. Normally I would have made my pudding months ago so I would have frozen it. But because Christmas is so close I will keep this in the fridge till Christmas eve. Then I will take it out and let it come to room temperature before I reheat it on Christmas day.
To reheat it I will sprinkle a little water and brandy over it and then put it in microwave for 10 minutes then let it stand covered for 5 minutes and then put it back in for another five minutes. Serve it with fresh cream and brandy sauce. Some of our family even add ice cream.
Your guests will be sure that this has been made the traditional way. They will tell you they can always tell the difference. So just smile and accept the praise.
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