A traditional English pudding turned into cupcakes, Christmas Pudding Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Hard Sauce a rich and delicious. With all the flavors of a steamed pudding it’s a favorite for the holidays.
I got a wild hair…you know where. Actually, I got lazy in NOT buying a new pudding mold since mine went missing, but it’s for the better. I’m usually the only one that eats the Christmas pudding anyway. But I still got a wild hair to turn it into a cupcake recipe. Since Christmas pudding is traditionally steamed or boiled, I wasn’t quite sure other than a bain marie as to how to “bake” said cupcakes. That’s what eventually happened.
I started out creaming 1/2 cup of margarine and 1/2 cup of butter flavored Crisco with 1 cup of brown sugar. (In hindsight, this is a little too much fat. You could use 1/2 cup total) I added the zest of one orange, 3 eggs and 1/4 cup of egg substitute (ran out of eggs and…well…was lazy). I added 1 cup of golden raisins, 1/2 cup of citron (one whole package) and 3/8 cup of currants.
Next I added 5/8 cup of unbleached, all-purpose flour, 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger, 1 teaspoon apple pie spice, and 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon. Then went in 1/4 cup of grated carrot and 3/8 cup of fresh white bread crumbs. Finally, I combined 1/2 cup of hot water with 1 teaspoon of baking soda and added it to mix.
Yes, it looks weird if you haven’t made a traditional steamed Christmas pudding before. My recipe doesn’t have flour in it, but I knew I would need some in this recipe, but almost all the ingredients are present and accounted for. My original recipe does call for suet, which I have substituted margarine for in this recipe.
I preheated my oven to 350. I lined a two muffin tins with aluminum liners and sprayed them with cooking spray. Then I scooped the mixture into each liner filling to the top and making sure not to overfill. Then I covered the pan with aluminum foil and placed the muffin tins inside a jelly roll pan that comes at least 1/2 way up the sides of the muffin pan. I filled the jelly roll pan with hot water and placed them in the oven. I checked them after an hour and a knife inserted in the center came out clean. The cooking time will probably vary depending on your oven and your pans.
I removed them from the pan and allowed them to cool on a wire rack.
For the hard sauce, I combined 8 ounces of lowfat cream cheese (Neufchatel) with 2 1/2 cups of powdered sugar and 2 tablespoons of whiskey of choice. I used Maker’s Mark bourbon. You can use scotch, rum, whatever your hear desires. It is a true hard sauce and not an icing. I piped the hard sauce over the cupcakes and devoured them. They are yummy! They are not fruitcake, even though some of the items IN fruitcake are in here. This is a steamed pudding, so the texture and flavor are different.
Some post script type notes. I would cut the shortening/margarine to 1/2 cup. I would either lower the temperature of the oven or shorten the cooking time and check them after 30 minutes or try a pastry or cake flour. I think they were a little dry, even with the additional fat. If that makes sense… I didn’t soak the fruit in brandy or alcohol of any kind. My recipe doesn’t call for that, but you could if you so desire.
For the Cake:
- 1/2 c margarine or shortening
- 1 c brown sugar
- 1 T orange zest, grated
- 4 eggs, large
- 1 c golden raisins
- 1/2 c citron
- 3/8 c currants
- 5/8 c unbleached flour
- 1/2 t ground ginger
- 1 t apple pie spice
- 1/2 t cinnamon
- 1/4 c carrot, grated
- 3/8 c bread crumbs, fresh
- 1/2 c water
- 1 t baking soda
For the hard sauce:
- 8 oz lowfat cream cheese (Neufchatel)
- 2 1/2 c powdered sugar
- 2 T brandy, bourbon, rum, choice of whiskey
- Preheat oven to 350.
- Cream margarine or shortening with the brown sugar. Add the orange zest and eggs and stir until combine.
- Combine the flour, spices and fruit in a small bowl. Toss gently to coat fruit in flour. Add to the wet ingredients and stir until blended. Add the carrot and bread crumbs and stir until just blended.
- Combine 1/2 cup of hot water with 1 teaspoon of baking powder. Add to the batter and stir until combined.
- Line 2 muffin tins with aluminum foil liners and spray with cooking spray. Fill each liner to the top with batter. Tightly wrap each pan with foil and place in a jelly roll pan. Slowly add hot water to the jelly roll pan to come up the sides of the muffin tin at least halfway.
- Bake at 350 for 40-60 minutes. They're done when a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool in the pan 5 minutes then remove to a wire rack to completely cool.
- Combine the cream cheese, powdered sugar and whiskey until thick. Pipe over cupcakes and serve.