Butter, for greasing
100g pitted dates
3 tablespoons chopped crystallised ginger 
Zest of 1 orange 
500g mixed dried fruit, such as cranberries, cherries, apricots, sultanas and raisins 
125g plain (all-purpose) flour 
125g caster (superfine) sugar 
150g fresh breadcrumbs 
2 tablespoons brandy 
Handful of chopped nuts, such as pecan nuts, Brazil nuts and hazelnuts 
1 large, free-range egg 
150ml milk 


Grease a 1.5 litre/6 cup pudding bowl with butter. 

Roughly chop the dates, then combine with the ginger in a large mixing bowl. Add the remaining ingredients and mix until very well combined. 

Transfer the mixture to the greased bowl and cover with a double layer of aluminium foil. Tie a piece of string around the bowl to hold the foil in place. 

Place the bowl in a large stockpot with a tight-fitting lid and pour in enough water to come halfway up the side of the bowl. Bring to the boil, then place the lid on the pan and simmer for 3 hours – don’t forget to check the water level regularly to make sure it never boils dry. If it does, it will burn and the bowl will crack. 

After 3 hours, remove the foil and turn the pudding out onto a plate. Serve warm.

Chyka likes to serve it with cute gingerbread reindeer antlers on top!

This is an edited extract from Chyka Celebrate by Chyka Keebaugh published by Hardie Grant Books $40 and is available where all good books are sold.

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