WINTER FRUIT AND SPICES PUDDING

Yields8 Servings
 300 g caster sugar
 600 ml light red wine
 1 vanilla pod, scored lengthways, seeds scraped out
 3 whole cloves
 1 cinnamon stick
 2 pears
 200 g frozen, mixed Black Forest fruit
 100 g dried cranberries
 150 g pitted prunes
 Sliced brioche loaf
 Icing sugar for dusting
 You will also need a 1.2 litre pudding basin
1

Place the sugar in a pan with 5 tablespoons of water; simmer for 7-8 minutes, until the sugar starts to caramelize; once golden brown, stand back and at arm’s length, carefully add the wine, it will spit, but then settle down; stir until the caramel dissolves, then add the vanilla pod and seeds, cloves and cinnamon stick and simmer for a further 5 minutes or so until slightly reduced

2

Peel and core the pears and cut into smallish chunks; add to the pan and simmer for 5 minutes; add the frozen fruit, cranberries and prunes; stir and simmer for a few more minutes until the fruit has defrosted

3

Trim the crusts off the slices of the brioche and lay a slice on the bottom of the pudding basin; place more slices around the sides of the bowl, cutting and fitting them like a jigsaw; leave a few slices for the top

4

Sieve the fruit and keep the liquid; remove the vanilla pod, cinnamon and cloves and spoon the fruit into the brioche lined bowl; press it down lightly and pour half of the juice over the fruit; cover the top with the reserved brioche slices and cover with clingfilm; place a saucer on top and put a weight on it ; let it cool and place in the fridge overnight until it sets

5

Take the pudding out of the fridge 30 minutes before you want to serve it; lift the weight, plate and clingfilm off the pudding and run a knife around it to loosen; place a serving plate upside down over the bowl and carefully invert the plate and pudding, give it a quick shake and lift off the bowl; pour some of the reserved juice over the top and dust with icing sugar and serve

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