Today I’m sharing a recipe for one of my proudest recipe inventions to date. It’s a FODMAP friendly Christmas pudding that is both gluten free and fruit free. Yes, fruit free. No longer do you have to politely choke back sultanas in public, only to suffer the consequences in private. This recipe uses a homemade fruit mince made with (drum roll pls) PUMPKIN.
Thanks to our hero of the day (pumpkin) this FODMAP friendly Christmas pudding is a lot of things. It is gluten free, grain free, fruit free and adaptable to be completely dairy free. It’s also (according to a very select number of my ‘normal’ friends, ‘better than regular pudding.’ Their words. We won’t go into whether or not they were just being polite to the dietary weirdo.
FODMAP FRIENDLY CHRISTMAS PUDDING NOTES
- Cubing the pumpkin finely is the best way to ensure your guests don’t realise they’re eating a vegetable. It’s laborious work, but goes by quickly if you pop on the tv and slowly chip away at it.
- You can double this pudding if you’re feeding a large crowd. It will seem like a lot of ingredients, but I promise it works.
- Because pudding has had the life steamed out of it, it keeps for a long ass time. Make sure the leftovers are in the fridge in an airtight container.
- To mix things up, you can use a little finely chopped celeriac in place of the pumpkin. I prefer the pumpkin version, but it is an option.
- The slower you cook the fruitless mince, the chewier and more reminiscent of dried fruit it will be. I recommend going low and slow if you have the time for it.
- I don’t have a refined sugar free option at this point. It’s Christmas, treat yo’self (unless you don’t want to, which is also fine.)
- You can use whatever booze you like in this recipe. I like Campari, but something like brandy or rum would also be nice. You could also substitute the alcohol for extra lemon and orange juice. I’d suggest extra lemon in the fruit mince, but extra orange in the pudding mix.
- Be sure to use Kent or Japanese pumpkin to keep the FODMAP content down. Butternut is a higher FODMAP variety.
- The recipe uses almond meal, but divided between the individual servings it should be of no FODMAP related concern. I will work on a nut free version at some point for those who have the trifecta of dietary requirements.
- If you’d like the FODMAP friendly Christmas pudding to be completely dairy free, substitute a butter substitute for the butter. Nuttelex is an easy option as it is available in the supermarket here in Australia.
- If you’d like a little colour, you could also add some fresh or frozen cranberries to the pudding. Fresh are ok for fructose intolerants, whereas dried are not. I found some frozen ones at an Italian deli in Brunswick, if you happen to be my nextdoor neighbour or thereabouts.
FODMAP FRIENDLY CHRISTMAS PUDDING
To make the fruit mince:
- 500 g Kent or Japanese pumpkin chopped into small cubes
- 1 1/3 cups white sugar
- 5 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 5 tablespoons fresh orange juice
- 2 tablespoons Campari
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon powder
- 2 teaspoons nutmeg powder
- 1 teaspoon ground clove
- 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
To make the pudding:
- 1 quantity of fruitless fruit mince, above
- 3 tablespoons dark brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons Campari or other liquor
- 1 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground clove
- 3 extra large eggs
- 1 cup (100g) almond meal
- 3/4 cup (75g) tapioca flour
- 75 g butter melted and cooled
- Pinch of fine salt
To make the fruit mince:
- The night before, combine all the ingredients for the fruit mince and allow to sit in a non-reactive bowl overnight. This will begin the process of flavouring and candying the pumpkin.
- The next day (or at least 3-4 hours later) pour the mixture into a large saucepan or skillet. Place over a low-medium heat, and allow to cook for around 30 minutes, stirring intermittently. The slower you cook the mixture, the softer the pumpkin will be, so if you have the time you can cook it low and low for up to an hour.
- The mixture should bubble throughout the cooking process. Eventually, a thickened syrup will form while the pumpkin pieces remain intact but soft. Once that syrup is sufficiently thick, remove the mince from the heat and allow to cool completely. If you have used the rosemary sprig, gently remove it and discard.
The make the pudding:
- Just fill the bottom of a large soup pot with water. Place something waterproof and crack proof in the base so that the pudding is elevated just above the water. I used an inverted steel pie tin.
- Grease your pudding bowl liberally. You can line the circular base of the pudding bowl as an insurance policy, if you like.
- Mix together all the ingredients for the pudding and stir thoroughly to combine. Pour the mixture into the pudding tin. You can place a piece of baking paper on the bottom of the pudding too – this will stop any rogue water getting in but also result in a smooth base.
- Layer two pieces of foil over the pudding and secure tightly with string. Place the pudding on the little island you've created and pop the lid on.
- Turn the heat to a low-medium, and set the timer for 2 hours.
- Once the two hours are up, open the pudding carefully (so you can continue to cook if necessary but also so you don't get a steam burn.) If there is a bit of squishiness when you press the centre of pudding, cook in additional 15 minute increments until the centre feels completely firm.
- Allow to cool a little before gently running a knife around the edge (if necessary) and inverting onto a plate. Serve with lactose free custard or ice cream and some berries.