Queen Elizabeth II's Christmas Pudding Recipe (2024)

Queen Elizabeth II's Christmas Pudding Recipe (1)

Mr NQN and I were shopping the other day. Well more correctly I was dragging him along to the shops and he was dragging his heels. He is usually fine as long as there's a comfortable place for him to sit and an internet connection but there wasn't in this case. I told him that if I had my own shop I would make sure that the bored menfolk would have their very own lounge and internet connection so that we could shop in peace. There would be a buzzer system where we could summon them to thechangeroom for their opinion when needed.

"So, what would you call your shop?" he asked me.

"Hmmm....something about owls. The name Hooters is obviously out" I quickly added.

"And what would you sell?"

I started to get excited "Well I'm glad that you asked because I've thought about it! Of course I'd put some taxidermied owls in the window or other forest creatures. Or if I could I could have real owls but perhaps the local council wouldn't like that unless they were Harry Potter fans. I'd sell things that I find interesting...like that."

Queen Elizabeth II's Christmas Pudding Recipe (2)

I pointed at a window. We were in the Blue Mountains over Easter and we had stopped in front of a shop with a window full of waving Queen Elizabeth II statuettes. The figurines were solar powered and upon closer inspection the solar panel sat on top of her handbag. It was fabulous and I knew just who I would buy it for. And before I would give it to them she would figure in my Queen Elizabeth II pudding recipe photo.

Queen Elizabeth II's Christmas Pudding Recipe (3)

Yes this pudding recipe is Queen Elizabeth II's very own recipe. And how did I get a hold of it? Well I was lucky enough to meet chef Peter Morgan-Jones who worked for Buckingham Palace a few years ago. I was at a lunch hosted by the Trippas White group who cater for the Art Gallery Restaurant, the Botanic Gardens restaurant and among several others. Peter is the group executive chef across all of the restaurants. He is a quietly spoken, lovely man and when the talk turned to the upcoming royal wedding, he mentioned that he used to work at Buckingham Palace and that he had the Queen's Christmas Pudding recipe. Excitedly I asked him if he could share it and he told me that he could! Fascinated I read through the recipe. There was no month long steeping of fruit but there was stout,suet and grated carrot and apple.

Queen Elizabeth II's Christmas Pudding Recipe (4)

I must admit that I find the whole concept of royalty fascinating. And while I'm not vehemently pro or against I put them in the same category as celebrities. If I like what they say or do I like them but if they don't then I don't like them and I don't take take a general stance on them. But I am absolutely fascinated in taking a peek into their world. What do they eat? Are they like the rest of us? And it seems I had met someone that could tell me all about them from a food perspective whichis just what I was interested in!

Peter was a royal caterer for five years and he spent time working at Buckingham Palace , Windsor castle , Highgrove & Kensington Palace (for Charles and Diana), Clarence house (for the Queen mum) andGatcombe park (Princess Anne). He also ran the Buckingham palace garden parties which were affairs with 8,000 guests and "We used to make 16,000 sandwiches and serve 10,000 cups of tea." And what were each of their tastes like?

Queen Elizabeth II's Christmas Pudding Recipe (5)

Well according to Peter, Charles eats organic fare from his estate at Highgrove. He didn't eat red meat but occasionally would eat poultry and fish and Princess Diana would eat the same. The Queen and Queen Mum both loved traditional fare e.g. roast beef and Yorkshire pudding. For breakfast she would eat wholemeal toast (dry, from what he saw) and porridge. Her husband the Duke of Edinburgh (Prince Philip) was partial to game with Peter cooking at many pheasant shoots on their shooting estate inTetbury, Gloucestershire. Peter would also cook for Prince Charles when he would entertain at Highgrove. Charles would host barbecues for all his farming land renters (Duchy of Cornwall) which would featurebeef burgers, sausages , lamb brochettes , salmon kebabs, salads and bread. See, they're just like us! Well not really ;)

He got to meet all of the royals although hedid not formally meet the Queen as it takes five years before an introduction. Peter explains "The others are very approachable, just usual royal etiquette . Speak when spoken to and do not raise a question first. I met Princess Diana at Highgrove and we had a chat in her kitchen over a cup of tea on a couple of occasions. She was very warm and approachable. Prince Charles was also very social, dropping the occasional jokes etc."

Queen Elizabeth II's Christmas Pudding Recipe (6)

As for this pudding, annually "We used to make 1,600 (of the puddings). I used to get one back each Christmas as a present from the Queen" Peter says.The Christmas pudding is of course out of season but I figured fruit cake and Christmas pudding are very similar creatures-cousins at least withthe differences being the use of suet and breadcrumbs and the pudding being steamed rather than baked. And of course I wasn't in a position to call the Queen upandask her for her wedding cake recipe.Peter tells us that "Christmas pudding is traditionally served warm with brandy sauce /ice cream or custard. This recipe is very moist and I used to eat it cold. It is also good crumbled into ice cream to make Christmas pudding ice cream."

Queen Elizabeth II's Christmas Pudding Recipe (7)

This recipe does take eight hours of steaming. Yes eight hours. So I figured it was about perfect for the night of the wedding if you were so inclined and staying up for it. I kept it as authentic as possible by buying English stout rather than using beer although the only English stout was a chocolate stout (and hey when is adding chocolate a bad thing?). I also found myself some suet last minute from Victor Churchill although Peter advises that usually giving your butcher three day's notice is wise as it's not always an item that they stock.

Queen Elizabeth II's Christmas Pudding Recipe (8)

As it was I started it around 6pm one evening and by the time it was steaming it was 6:30pm and I had to set alarms every two hours to keep topping it up with boiling water and a 2:30am wake up call to turn the stove off. And if there is one thing I would recommend, it is putting it in a large steamer pot. I had one that held a reservoir of 2 litres of water under the steamer insert which meant that I didn't have to worry about it boiling dry and I could just check on it every 2-3 hours insteadof more frequently. After eight hours, bleary eyed, I turned it off and then went to bed just hoping that the thing was cookedandat that stage not being even mildly curious just wanting some sleep.

Queen Elizabeth II's Christmas Pudding Recipe (9)

The next morning, the pudding has cooled so that it was easy to handle. I took the lid off and peered inside it. Would it budge? All I had done was greased the pudding tin. I lifted the parchment disc and the pudding looked cooked which was an immense relief to me. The pudding was lovely and moist and packed with a generous amount of fruit and Mr NQN and I devoured it with much relish and then went back for more. I will be saving slices of this to eat with brandy custard when we watch the RoyalWedding tomorrow night on television.

So tell me Dear Reader, will you be watching the Royal Wedding?

Queen Elizabeth II's Christmas pudding

Recipe courtesy of Peter Morgan-Jones

Makes 2-4 puddings depending on the size of your pudding basin. This made two 1 litre puddings

  • 200g currants

  • 350g seedless raisins

  • 120g chopped candied mixed peel

  • 350g sultanas

  • 100g chopped glace cherries

  • 170g blanched slivered almonds

  • 1 tart cooking apple, peeled, cored, chop coarsely

  • 1 carrot, peeled and chopped finely

  • 5 teaspoon grated orange rind

  • 2 teaspoon lemon rind

  • 230g beef suet (order from local butcher),chopped finely

  • 100g fresh white breadcrumbs

  • 230g plain flour

  • 230g brown sugar

  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg grated

  • 4 tblsp brandy

  • 1 teaspoon mixed spice

  • 4 tblsp fresh orange juice

  • 120 ml stout (dark Ale)

  • 6 eggs

  • 3 tblsp lemon juice

  • butter for greasing the pudding basin


Queen Elizabeth II's Christmas Pudding Recipe (10)

Step 1 - Place the dry fruit and cherries and rind in the biggest bowl you can find, with the apple and carrot and almonds. Add the beef suet and mix together. Stir in flour, breadcrumbs, salt mixed spice and cinnamon and brown sugar.

Queen Elizabeth II's Christmas Pudding Recipe (11)

Step 2 - Whisk the eggs until frothy. Add the ale, brandy, orange and lemon juice.Knead mixture togethervigorouslyuntil well blended, spoon into four 750 ml pudding basins, cover with buttered greaseproof circle, and make sure pudding is not to the top of rim.

Queen Elizabeth II's Christmas Pudding Recipe (12)

Queen Elizabeth II's Christmas Pudding Recipe (13)

Step 3 - Cover pudding with aluminium foil and put a side plate on top to make a seal. Steam for 8 hours. When cool, place plastic lid on pudding, or use calico.Can be stored for up to 12 months.

To reheat, steam for 2 hours or place in the microwave (remove foil from top if using foil).

Queen Elizabeth II's Christmas Pudding Recipe (14)

Published on 2011-04-28 by Lorraine Elliott.

Queen Elizabeth II's Christmas Pudding Recipe (2024)


Queen Elizabeth II's Christmas Pudding Recipe? ›

She would buy them a Christmas pudding each from Tesco, having previously purchased them from Fortnum & Mason but switching to the popular supermarket as buying 1,500 puddings is quite the expense.

Where does the queen get her Christmas pudding? ›

She would buy them a Christmas pudding each from Tesco, having previously purchased them from Fortnum & Mason but switching to the popular supermarket as buying 1,500 puddings is quite the expense.

What is traditionally hidden inside a Christmas pudding in England? ›

For a long time it's been common practice to include silver Christmas pudding coins, charms or tokens into Christmas pudding. Finding a Christmas coin in your slice of pudding is believed to bring good luck and especially wealth in the coming year.

What is the famous British Christmas pudding? ›

Known initially as Pottage, it has also been called Plum Pudding, Figgy Pudding, and Frumenty. Traditionally, Christmas Pudding is served with a healthy drizzle of thick, delicious brandy sauce, which makes this dessert even more indulgent.

Why is there 13 ingredients in a Christmas pudding? ›

There is a popular myth that plum pudding's association with Christmas goes back to a custom in medieval England that the "pudding should be made on the 25th Sunday after Trinity, that it be prepared with 13 ingredients to represent Christ and the 12 apostles, and that every family member stir it in turn from east to ...

What is the queens favourite pudding? ›

It's long been known that the Queen has a sweet tooth, particularly when it comes to chocolate, so it's no surprise that her go-to dessert is a rich, mint and chocolatey delight known as a Bombe Glacée Royale.

What does the royal family eat for Christmas dinner? ›

The royals dine on traditional sides like carrots, Brussels sprouts, and parsnips in addition to main dishes like a salad with shrimp or lobster, and a roasted turkey. Naturally, there needs to be dessert and the family has a few options like brandy butter or Christmas pudding.

What is the superstition about Christmas pudding? ›

Superstitions say that Christmas pudding must be prepared with 13 ingredients, which are said to represent Jesus and his twelve disciples. It is also said that the mixture should be stirred in turn from east to west, by each family member, to honour the disciples' journey.

Why was the Christmas pudding banned during history? ›

By the mid-1600s, plum pudding was sufficiently associated with Christmas that when Oliver Cromwell came to power in 1647 he had it banned, along with Yule logs, carol-singing and nativity scenes. To Cromwell and his Puritan associates, such merry-making smacked of Druidic paganism and Roman Catholic idolatry.

Why do you put a coin in a Christmas pudding? ›

It is key that every member of the family gives the pudding mixture a stir and makes a wish at the same time. Traditionally, a silver sixpence was stirred in to bring whoever found the coin on Christmas Day wealth and good luck in the year to come.

What alcohol do you pour on Christmas pudding? ›

How do I flame the Christmas pudding? Turn out the steamed pudding onto a serving plate with a good-sized rim around the edge to catch any spirit. The important thing is to get the spirit really hot. Pour 2-3 tablespoons of brandy, rum or whisky into a long-handled metal ladle and heat it over a gas flame until hot.

What do Americans call Christmas pudding? ›

First off, the English term “pudding” can refer to just about any “dessert”, though “Christmas pudding” is a specific type of dessert, that an American is more likely to call an extreme variant of a “soaked cake” or “brandy cake”.

What is traditionally eaten with Christmas pudding? ›

The traditional accompaniment to the Christmas pudding was a sweet custard or a hard sauce (nowadays known as brandy butter). It was customary to hide a number of small trinkets in the mixture, a bit like the twelfth night cake.

What is the penny in the pudding? ›

The Currency of Christmas Pudding

The coin originally used was a penny, then a sixpence. When decimal currency was introduced in countries such as Australia, it had an unsavoury effect on this age-old tradition.

What is the oldest Christmas pudding? ›

The tinned pudding is believed to be one of the oldest in the world. A 120-year-old Christmas pudding given to Royal Navy sailors fighting in the Boer War has gone on display.

What is the penny in the Christmas cake? ›

We do this by cutting a cake, usually baked at home, with a coin hidden inside it. This cake is called a vasilopita and tradition has it that the person who finds the coin in their piece of cake will have lots of luck, success and good fortune for the rest of the year.

What does the Queen give her staff for Christmas? ›

Each December, Queen Elizabeth gives each member of her staff around 1,500 Christmas puddings to share between them, according to the official royal website.

What does the queen call pudding? ›

In the Royal Family, according to former royal chef Darren McGrady, they use the word 'pudding' to mean dessert after a main meal.

What desserts does the queen eat? ›

When it's time to treat herself, McGrady revealed that all the Queen wants is a piece of chocolate biscuit cake. The cake is reportedly made in-house (or, more appropriately, in-palace), and Her Majesty consumes one slice per day.

Where is Christmas pudding from? ›

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