Until Aldi pointed it out to me, I had no idea that last Sunday was supposed to have been the very traditional "Stir-Up Sunday". No, this is nothing to do with wok cookery (though I think I may invent Stir Fry Sunday anyway) - no, Stir Up Sunday is the day of the year on which people traditionally make their Christmas puddings so that they can mature in time for Christmas.
I had never attempted to make a Christmas pudding before in my life and, to be honest, I was a little daunted. But, Aldi sent me the ingredients from their range of products which would help me make a perfect Christmas pud.
- Dried fruit such as prunes, sultanas, currants, apricots and raisins
- Whole almonds, ground almonds and walnuts
- Dark brown sugar
- Brown bread (who knew???)
- Honey and marmalade
- Fresh oranges and apples
- Dried sweet spices such as cinnamon, nutmeg and mixed spice
- Eggs and best of all...
So this week we have been creating our pudding mixture together as a family.
First of all, Lara prepared all of the dried fruit. She loved chopping the sticky dried prunes and very much enjoyed weighing out all of the ingredients - always a great maths challenge opportunity! We added sugar and a touch of Napoleon brandy and left it all overnight to soak in. Oh my goodness did it smell divine... I kept having to go back to the bowl and give it a sniff!
On the next day Lara, Holly and I added all sorts of other yummy Aldi ingredients including freshly grated crunchy apples, orange zest and juice which, when combined with the dried mixed spices, left the entire house smelling REALLY Christmassy. We all took it in turns to stir the pudding mixture (and that includes Mr. B.) so that we could each make a Christmas wish.
The mixture needs to soak up all the Christmassy goodness for another 24 hours so next up I will need to pack the mixture into pudding bowls (I'm planning on making a couple of little ones) and steam for literally FOREVER so that we can then store the Christmas puddings for Christmas. Woop. I can't wait.