Chef Mark Payne of the Ritz-Carlton Chicago shares one of his family favorites --Christmas Pudding.Makes 1- large 2 pint pudding basin or a 2 smaller 1 pint pudding basins
5 oz raisins 7oz golden raisins 6 oz currants 3 oz almonds, chopped fine 7 oz suet, shredded 1 each lemon zest 1 each orange zest 1 each grated apple, do not peel 4 oz bread crumbs 4 oz all purpose flour 7 oz brown sugar Pinch salt ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon 4 oz whole mixed candied peel, finely chopped 4 oz brandy 6 oz stout beer (dart) 3 each eggs Place the suet, flour, breadcrumbs, sugar and spices together in a large bowl. Mix all of the ingredients together very thoroughly. Add the chopped candied fruits and nuts to the ingredients in the bowl. Add and mix in the raisins along with the apple and citrus zest. Combine the stout beer, brandy and eggs together in a separate bowl and mix completely Pour over the dry mix and combine well Pack the mixture in a lightly greased pudding basin and cover the opening with a double sheet of parchment paper and a sheet of foil. Tie the aluminum with string. Place the pudding in a steamer set over a pot of simmering water and steam for 8 hours. After steaming, let the pudding chill and set aside for the next day. Replace the parchment paper and foil with new and store it in a cool dry place until ready to steam again. (At least one day) To cook: Place the pudding back on the steamer set and steam for 2 ¼ hours. To serve: remove the pudding from the steamer and take off the parchment. Slide a flat spatula to remove the pudding and turn it out on a warmed plate. Garnish with holly on top. Serve with warmed brandy and flambé. Be cautious with the flame.