This is the loveliest idea for pictures we have done ever; we took a beloved, traditional recipe and made it together as a family, while my friend Rebecca memorialized it for all eternity in pictures, she’s another of my oh-so talented phot0grapher friends. You can take a peek at her work at Rebecca McKay Photography. I can’t think of anything that makes for better pictures to send to family members; my family is going to smile in fond remembrance of my grandmother’s recipe and my husbands are going to be entertained by something unique, fun and beautiful picture-wise. You can’t lose with this gift.
If you live in the Edmonton area, I highly recommend Rebecca, her rates are amazing and her work is beautiful. If not, look around for a local person and think of what recipe you would like to immortalize!
The recipe is my Grandma Marion’s Christmas Pudding, a non alcoholic (I know, what fun is that? but it is seriously fantastic) pudding made with vegetables and fruit, then steamed for 6 hours.
We freeze it for a month or so, then let it thaw on Christmas Day, and warm it up to be served with vanilla ice cream and my brown sugar sauce. It would also be amazing with a brandy butter sauce and perhaps this year I will shake things up a bit and make that instead!
1 c up of coarsely grated carrots
1 cup of grated raw potato
1/2 cup of butter
1 cup of sugar
1 cup of flour
2 tsp allspice
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
1 cup of seedless raisins
1 cup of sultana raisins
2 rounds of candied pineapple
1 cup candied cherries
You will also need a small glass bowl to put the pudding in to steam, and a trivet and a lidded pot to accomplish said steaming!
Start by chopping up the candied cherries and pineapple rounds. Little hands are great helpers, this was one of my favorites pictures from the day.Ah heck, they were all my favorites….
…because this one makes my heart happy, my children helping for the fourth or fifth year (for my son) in a row to prepare my grandmothers Christmas pudding. Because she’s no longer with us to help make it, traditions like this help to connect her to my children, my son slightly remembers her but my daughter doesn’t at all. Preparing a dish together that generations of my family has prepared before us is eerily deep and meaningful, saturated with happy memories but with a little chest-clenching sadness thrown in for good measure.
While the adorable children are chopping, mom and dad should be grating the potato and carrot.
And then of course, Mom and Dad just can’t behave themselves, and make a proper pudding. Wait, that sounded like it could possibly be loaded with innuendos so, let’s just leave it at the big kids couldn’t behave.
Since my son can read proficiently this year, he read the instructions to us off the card, which are……
1. Cream the butter and sugar together.
2. Add in the carrots and half of the potatoes.
3. Mix in the flour, salt and spices.
4. Add in your fruit and raisins.
5. Dissolve the baking soda into the last half of the potatoes, and then add to the mixture last.
Cover, and steam in a small glass bowl for 4-5 hours. I use my smallest in my set of nesting Pyrex bowls, it is exactly the right size. I then place it in a large pot on a trivet to keep the bottom of the bowl off of the water, add an inch of water or so, put the lid on and steam away. You do have to refill the water since it takes a few hours. Freeze and serve for Christmas dinner, vanilla ice cream and a brown sugar sauce are amazing on it!
I hope you enjoy this recipe, as I love above all else to share the ones my grandma shared with me, it’s passing her love of cooking and baking on to others and helps me to remember all the amazing times I had with her.