Christmas Day is no time to say 'no thanks' to pudding, but if you're really determined to keep down the calorie count, try making this lighter version of the traditional favourite.
150g shredded suet
150g finely grated carrots
75g Sweet Freedom* Dark
2 medium free range eggs
Butter or oil to grease the basin/mould
You will need a 1 litre (approx 2lb) pudding basin or spherical pudding mould
1. In a large bowl mix together the raisins, currants, suet, breadcrumbs and grated carrots.
2. Mix together the Sweet Freedom, Guinness, brandy and eggs.
3. Pour onto the fruit mixture. Stir well until combined.
4. Cover and leave in a cool place overnight.
5. The next day, grease the basin or mould with butter or oil and place a small circle of non-stick baking parchment in the bottom of the basin or in the top and bottom halves of the spherical mould.
6. Stir the pudding (don’t forget to make a wish!) and press into the basin or mould. If you are using a basin, cover with a piece of baking parchment followed by tin foil and tie with string.
7. Steam for eight hours, keeping the water in the pan topped up with boiling water. Leave to cool and if you’ve used a basin, remove the baking parchment and foil and re-cover with new paper and foil. Store the pudding in a cool place until Christmas Day.
8. On Christmas morning, steam the pudding for at least an hour before serving, turn it out onto a serving plate and decorate with a sprig of holly (wrap the stalk in tin foil first).
For a gluten-free version, try using 150g of ground almonds instead of the breadcrumbs, omit the Guinness and use 60ml of brandy (in total) instead.
To flambé the pudding - warm a little brandy or vodka, pour over the pudding and carefully set alight.
*Sweet Freedom is a natural syrup sugar alternative made 100% from fruit with 25% fewer calories than sugar. It’s available to buy from Waitrose, Morrisons and Asda.