This is my friend Felicity's mother's pudding recipe. She's been making it for over 40 years. They boil it in metal drums on the barbie outside and make a big family day out of it. Great served with Brandy Custard
Chop raisins and mixed peel. Mix all fruits together, and pour over rum. Set aside and soak at least over night and up to a week to enable fruit to absorb the rum.
Cream butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy, add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in prepared fruit. Sift flour, salt, spice, bicarb soda and nutmeg; fold into mixture with breadcrumbs. Mix well. Put into dry calico pudding cloth. Set cloth in basin to get correct shape. Secure firmly with string.
Place into rapidly boiling water and boil steadily for 6 hours, replacing boiling water as necessary. To stop pudding catching on bottom of pot place a small plate into boiling water or hang from wooden spoon across top of pot and ensure water bubbles at least 3/4 of way up pudding. Remove from boiling water, hang in cool place to store or refrigerate.
Can be made up to six weeks in advance. On day of serving steam further 2 hours.
Steaming the pudding
This mixture can be steamed instead of boiled. Fill into a well-greased pudding basin to within 5cm of top. Cover securely with 2 layers of greased greaseproof paper and one of aluminium foil. Secure firmly with string. Place in steamer or large saucepan with sufficient boiling water to come halfway up basin. Water should boil gently, yet steadily; replenish with more boiling water when necessary. The lid of steamer or saucepan should fit securely.
Re-steam 2 hours on day of serving.