Puddin’ time

“Eat away, chew away,  munch and bolt and guzzle,

Never leave the table till you’re full up to the muzzle.”

The Magic Pudding, Norman Lindsay


This Christmas I’m saying no to traditional English pudding.  There were unconfirmed sightings of the pudding steamer half buried in the sandpit, and this year, it can stay there.

This is the year of the panforte.  The Italians have improved the concept of cooking up fruit and nuts by adding chocolate to the mix, and avoiding the evils of mixed peel.

And the additional beauty of panforte is that you have to stir it all together really quickly before it completely firms up, or the mixture sets into nut-studded concrete – a fantastic workout for the bingo wings/tuckshop mother arms.

 The proof of the pudding:

 (Disclaimer: this is a panforte doing a dramatic re-entactment of my panforte – I couldn’t cut up mine to photograph since it has to be taken to our family Christmas, and if it’s already cut, it will look like I’ve been pigging out. And the photos of it that aren’t cut up just look like a mud pie covered in flour.)

Anyways, Merry Christmas – bring on the festivities.



Icing sugar for dusting
50g pinenuts
50g pistachios
50g hazelnuts, toasted and skins rubbed off
100g almonds, toasted
20g cocoa or 40g dark chocolate, melted
55g plain flour
40g glace cherries, chopped
20g dried cranberries
70g figs, chopped
60g dried apricots, chopped
60g raisins
1/2 tspn cinnamon
1/2 tspn ground ginger
160g honey (I substituted 140g maple syrup and 120g sugar for a honey-phobic family member)
100g sugar


Preheat oven to 140C. Grease and line 15cm caketin.  Put chopped nuts, fruit, sifted flour and cocoa, cinnamon and ginger in a bowl and mix well.

Over low heat, combine honey (or maple syrup) and sugar, stiring until sugar dissolves.

Bring to boil, then simmer uncovered for 5 minutes (120C on a sugar thermometer if you own such a beast)

Quickly stir honey syrup into fruit and nut mixture. 

Press mix into prepared pan, flatten down top by putting down plastic wrap and pressing down.

Bake for 20 – 30 minutes.  It will still be soft, but will harden as it cools. Leave in tin overnight.

Wrap in foil and keep in airtight container – it should keep for about a month.

Dust with icing sugar before serving. Cut into thin wedges to serve, unless you’re a total glutton.


One response to this post.

  1. Posted by sare on December 23, 2010 at 12:41 pm

    merry christmas soph and the fam!
    the links


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: