Christmas Pudding Bourbon

My aunt makes the best Christmas Pudding. No, no arguments, it’s true.

So when we were looking for our first Christmas infusion, way back in 2013 it was a simple decision.

But, how to combine a Christmas pudding with a bottle of whiskey? There are several options, ranging from the 69 Colebrooke Row panettone bellini model (take a blender to a pudding and dissolve it as much as possible), otherwise, a ‘cold’ infusion as below, or a ‘hot infusion (using a sous vide) will also work nicely. For the Colebrooke Row approach you start at the end and deconstruct; for the latter two, you start with the ingredients and flavours of a Christmas pudding and build up.

This is a great, rich, spiced fruit bourbon when sipped on its own or in a whiskey-based cocktail. The bourbon-infused fruit also makes a great topping for vanilla ice cream.

Christmas Pudding Bourbon

makes 350ml
350ml bourbon
125g dark brown sugar
50g mixed peel
125g sultanas
75g raisins
zest and juice of half an orange
1/2 teaspoon of almond essence
1/4 teaspoon of ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon of mixed spice
a cinnamon stick
a vanilla bean

Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl and stir well. Leave in a cool place for about a week, stirring once a day. After a week, strain the mixture through a fine sieve – mash it right down to get all the juices out (and retain the fruit as an accompaniment to vanilla ice cream) then filter through a coffee filter paper. Transfer the infused bourbon to a sterile bottle and keep for up to six months.

Christmas in Manhattan #1

50ml Christmas pudding bourbon
25ml sweet vermouth
12.5ml Christmas Mulled Cup liqueur
2 dashes bitters

Combine all ingredients in a mixing glass with cubed ice. Stir well and strain into a chilled coupe.

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