Preparation time: 20 minutes
Cooking time: 3 hours plus standing
Difficulty: Easy - for beginners
Serves: 10 servings
â€¢1/2 cup butter, softened
â€¢1 cup sugar
â€¢1 teaspoon vanilla extract
â€¢2 cups all-purpose flour
â€¢1 teaspoon baking powder
â€¢1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
â€¢1 cup buttermilk
â€¢1 cup golden raisins
â€¢1 cup chopped Diamond of California® Walnuts
â€¢1 cup chopped dates
â€¢1 cup packed brown sugar
â€¢1 teaspoon all-purpose flour
â€¢1 cup water
â€¢1 teaspoon butter
â€¢1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
â€¢Silk or plastic holly leaves, optional
â€¢Fresh cranberries, optional
â€¢In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in egg and vanilla. Combine the flour, baking powder and cinnamon; add to creamed mixture alternately with buttermilk, beating well after each addition. Fold in the raisins, walnuts and dates.
â€¢ Spoon into a well-greased 2-qt. pudding mold or ovenproof bowl; cover tightly. Place on a rack in a deep pan; add 3 in. of hot water to pan. Bring to a gentle boil; cover and steam for 3 hours or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean, adding water to pan as needed.
â€¢ Let stand for 20 minutes before unmolding. Meanwhile, in a large saucepan, combine brown sugar and flour. Stir in water until smooth. Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 5 minutes. Remove from the heat; stir in butter and vanilla.
â€¢ Unmold pudding onto a serving plate; garnish with holly leaves and cranberries if desired. Serve warm with syrup. Yield: 10 servings (1-1/4 cups syrup).
Editor's Note: Holly leaves and berries are toxic. Do not use as a garnish.