Monday, 4 December 2017

A New Christmas Tradition with Nature's Finest #StirUpSunday

Last weekend we started a new Christmas tradition. We joined in with Stir Up Sunday. This was something i'd not heard of before but it's basically the day where you bake your Christmas pudding. Both hubby and I have never attempted to make a Christmas pudding (we've always been naughty and bought one) so when Nature's Finest got in touch and asked if we'd like to bake a pudding with their ingredients, we decided to give it a go.


As a family November hasn't been a great month for us. We have had an unexpected family death and both the girls have had chicken pox. We thought starting this new Christmas tradition would bring us together for some family fun and finally get us in the Christmas spirit.

Stir Up Sunday is an old tradition where on the last Sunday in November, families would all make their Christmas pudding. Legend has it that if each family member stirs the pudding mixture then their wishes will come true. I love the fact that this tradition has a bit of magic in it. It makes it all the more exciting, especially for the kids.


Image from Nature's Finest


We used a recipe provided by Nature's Finest:

Ingredients:
· 2 x 400g Nature’s Finest Pitted Prunes in juice, drained
· Butter for greasing
· 150mls dark rum (I didn't include this as I don't like alcohol in puddings!)
· Finely grated zest of 1 large orange
· 75g vegetarian suet
· 75g dark brown sugar
· 75g plain flour
· 2 tsp mixed spice
· 2 tsp ground cinnamon
· 50g white breadcrumbs
· 50g Brazil nuts, roughly chopped
· 1 large egg 

· 200g mixed dried fruit
1. Lightly grease a 1.2 litre pudding basin and line the base with disc of baking paper.
2. Cut a 38cm square of baking paper and place it on top of square of foil of the same size. Use butter to grease a circle about 18cm side in the centre of the baking paper then fold a 5cm pleat down the centre.
3. Place 1 pot of prunes in a blender and puree until smooth. Roughly chop the second pot of prunes. Transfer prunes to a mixing bowl, add all the remaining ingredient and mix well
4. Spoon the mixture into the prepared bowl. Place the square of foil and baking paper, greased side down on top of the pudding, with the pleat down the middle. Tie a long piece of string around the rim of the bowl, then loop string over and under the bowl to take a handle.
5. Sit the pudding on a heatproof saucer in a large deep pan, then pour in enough hot water to come half way up the bowl. Cover and simmer for 4 hours topping up water as necessary. Remove and cool store in cool place until required.
6. To reheat steam in a pan for 1 hour or remove foil and baking paper, cover with cling film and microwave for 5-10 minutes or until hot through.
The first thing that shocked me when we starting to make the pudding was how easy the process actually was. We've never had a go at making one before because we assumed the'd be very difficult and quite technical but actually it was fairly simple.



Eva adores baking so she decided to take the lead. We prepared the ingredients with her but hubby and I did any chopping etc. Ophelia wasn't quite sure what to make of it all and sort of sat and observed much to Eva's delight.



To make everything easier for Eva, we separated all of the ingredients into separate bowls so all she had to do was crack an egg and then pour everything into the big bowl. She wasn't very impressed with the smell of the rum, however Daddy thought that was the best part.



Once every ingredient was in, it was time for us all to have a stir and make a wish.




We then left the pudding to cook for 4 hours. I am so impressed with what we managed to make (even if I did break it when trying to remove it from the bowl). I honestly thought it was unachievable. Even though it is broken in places, it still looks and smells amazing. We are having a mock Christmas dinner next week (as we are on holiday for Christmas day) so we will be serving this for dessert with some thick clotted cream. My mouth is watering just thinking about it.



We will definetly be joining in with Stir Up Sunday every year. We had such fun enjoying this new Christmas tradition for our young family.

Have you used any Nature's Finest products before? Have you ever made a Christmas pudding?
*Thank you to Nature's Finest for sending us a hamper to make the pudding*
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11 comments

  1. Ah, love the message behind Stir Up Sunday - getting the whole family involved and together! Sorry your November has been tough but so nice that your time making a Christmas pudding together helped!

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    1. Thank you. Yes it's a lovely message and tradition isn't it. Just what xmas should be all about x

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  2. a fabulous idea to get the whole family involved with a brilliant reward at the end. It looks so easy to prepare and follow the recipe. Great stuff

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  3. Getting the kids involved in such a tradition is amazing and I hope this month improves for you all. I don't really like Christmas pudding though but I could make chocolate pudding instead :D

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  4. What a fun idea - I love starting new traditions at this time of year :)

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  5. I've never baked Christmas cake before either - you have inspired me. I hope your family have a happier December x

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  6. So sorry to hear about the unexpected family death I hope you are ok :( sending my love x On a brighter note I love the sound of stir up Sunday x

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  7. Every year we make our own Christmas pudding around the 23rd, we love spending time together to do this and I love that you have incorporated this new tradition in your family. I'm sorry to hear of your bad news, I hope December is a better month for you all.

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  8. I'd heard of Stir-up Sunday, but we've never made our own Xmas pud before. I bought one at the farmer's market the other week.

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  9. Nice Happy family. I wish to be happy for ever and ever...

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  10. Honestly it is the best to get the kids involved, my daughter be it treats, breakfast lunch or dinner she always helps. I find that she will be more inclined to eat it that way too lol! x

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