Method

  1. Step 1

    To create the 3 in 1 pudding you will need a large Christmas pudding, some home made chocolate truffle mixture with vanilla buttercream and a single portion of trifle....Recipes are below, but if you are short of time there is no reason not to use a ready made Christmas pudding and a ready made single portion of Trifle.

  2. Step 2

    The day/night before: Place all the fruit ingredients into a non-metallic mixing bowl. Stir in the grated orange and lemon zest and the juice. Finally add the stout (Guinness) and mix well. Cover and leave overnight in a cool place. The dried fruit will plump up with the alcohol and fruit juices.


  3. Step 3

    The Next day : Mix in the flour, suet and breadcrumbs in a very large mixing bowl.

    In a separate bowl beat the eggs with the brandy, then add this to the flour, suet and breadcrumb mixture, stirring it in a little at a time.

    Then in stages add everything else – stir in the sugar, salt, and spices, the chopped almonds, grated carrot and apple, and then everything from the overnight bowl of fruit and mix well. Make sure all the ingredients are thoroughly mixed in and there are no clumps.

    If the mixture is a little wet add in some extra plain flour, if a little dry add in some milk. The mixture should be of a soft ‘dropping’ consistency, i.e. the mixture is not too sloppy but will drop off the spoon when tilted.

  4. Step 4

    Grease a large 2 litre round pudding basin with butter.

    Spoon the mixture into the greased pudding basin, and pack it down a little, level the surface with the back of the spoon – the level of the pudding should be about 3cm (1.5 inches) below the top (or less) of the basin. Cut a round, large sheet of baking parchment (or greaseproof paper) and one of foil slightly bigger so they will come down at least 10 cm (4 inches) over the sides of the basin.

  5. Step 5

    Lay the baking parchment on top of the foil and fold a large pleat down the centre of both (to allow for any pudding expansion). Lay the sheets over the top of the pudding basin (foil side up) and secure around the sides with string – wrap the string around the pudding basin several times tightly and tie the string off to make sure the foil top is secured down firmly and the pudding is sealed. Trim off any excess foil and paper if it is too long. You can even make a string handle by looping it over the top and tying it off under the string going around the basin.
    Stand the pudding basin in a deep saucepan (which has a tight fitting lid) on an upturned heatproof plate. to raise it off the bottom of the saucepan – add a little water under the plate to get rid of any air pockets. Pour in boiling water to come just under half way up the side of the pudding basin.

    Keep the water at a medium simmer, cover with a tight fitting lid and steam for 7 or 8 hours, topping up with boiling water from time to time. It is important to keep checking the level of the water so that it does not run dry.

    After the allotted time spent steaming remove the pudding basin from the steamer or saucepan and allow to cool. When cool take off and replace the foil and greaseproof paper top with some fresh sheets and re-secure and seal – before sealing drizzle over a little extra brandy. Store the pudding in its sealed pudding basin in a cool dark place until ready to create the 3 in 1 pudding.

  6. Step 6

    Now for the Truffle mixture...
    Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas 4 and line a 12-hole muffin tin with cupcake cases.

  7. Step 7

    Beat together the butter and sugar in a bowl until light and fluffy.

    Add one egg at a time and beat after each addition until fully incorporated.

    Sift the flour and cocoa powder into the bowl and add the milk. Beat until the mixture is smooth and thoroughly combined.

  8. Step 8

    Spoon the mixture evenly between the 12 cupcake cases and bake for 15 -18 minutes until the tops are firm and spring back to shape when pressed.

    Set aside to cool for 10 minutes, then remove from the tin and cool on a wire rack.

    When cold, take the cakes from their cases and crumble into crumbs, put the crumbs to one side while you make the chocolate buttercream.

  9. Step 9

    Beat the butter in a large bowl until soft. Add half the icing sugar and beat until smooth.
    Then add the remaining icing sugar and cocoa powder with one tablespoon of the milk, adding more milk if necessary, until the mixture is firm, smooth and creamy.

  10. Step 10

    For the Chocolate Buttercream, beat the butter in a large bowl until soft. Add half the icing sugar and beat until smooth.
    Then add the remaining icing sugar and cocoa powder with one tablespoon of the milk, adding more milk if necessary, until the mixture is firm, smooth and creamy.

    To assemle the truffle, take the chocolate cake crumbs and mix with a small amount of the chocolate buttercream, add a tablespoon at a time. You will need to use your hands and squish the mixture together to create a soft sticky consistency. Set to one side until ready to create the 3 in 1 pudding.

  11. Step 11

    For the Vanilla Buttercream, beat the butter in a large bowl until soft. Add half the icing sugar and beat until smooth.
    Then add the remaining icing sugar with one tablespoon of the milk, adding more milk if necessary, until the mixture is firm, smooth and creamy. Set to one side until ready to create the 3 in 1 pudding.

  12. Step 12

    Now your ready to tackle the trifle...the trifle can be made in one large glass dish or preferably into individual glasses

    Line the bottom of the dish or glasses with the cake slices or trifle sponges. Sprinkle with the sherry and leave to soak for 5 minutes.

    If using fresh strawberries, slice thickly. Lay the fruit evenly over the sponge. Press lightly with a fork to release the juices.

    Pour over the liquid jelly making sure it covers the sponge. Place the dish/dishes into the refrigerator and leave until the jelly is set.

    Once set, spoon over the custard, again in a thick layer and finally, finish with a thick layer of whipped cream. Set to one side until ready to create the 3 in 1 pudding.

  13. Step 13

    You're now ready to assembly your 3 in 1 pud!

    Christmas Pudding layer
    Take the Christmas pudding and keeping it in its bowl take a tablespoon and gently scoop out the middle section of the pudding so that you leave approximately 2.5cm of pudding all the way around the bowl.

    Mock ‘Yule Log’ layer
    Take the vanilla buttercream and using the back of a teaspoon, spread a thick layer to cover the scooped out area of the pudding.
    Now take your Chocolate Truffle mixture and taking a heaped teaspoon full at a time roll between the palms of your hands to create a ball, flatten slightly between your hands and lay on top of the vanilla buttercream layer of the mock ‘Yule Log’. The mixture will be very pliable and moist and easy to squish together. Keep doing this method to build up a lovely rich chocolatey layer to your pudding. This will also need to be approximately 2.5cm thick.

    You should now have a cavity in the centre of your cake a little bigger than a golf ball.

    Surprise Trifle centre
    Take a single portion of trifle and gently fill the central cavity of your pudding, being careful to put the cream layer in first, then the custard and finally the jelly and sponge part. Make sure the cavity is filled level with the base of the pudding.

  14. Step 14

    To serve, slide a palette knife all round the edge of pudding, place the serving plate upside down on top of the bowl. Using both hands, grip the bowl and plate together and with confidence swiftly turn the whole thing upside down. The pudding will now be the right way round on the serving plate.

    Generously sprinkle icing sugar through a small sieve and place a sprig of holly on top.