A Christmas Pudding With A Twist

WORDS: Chyka Keebaugh

PHOTOS: Lisa Atkinson

Everyone looks forward to Christmas dessert, don't they?Sure, you have no room left in your stomach to even entertain the idea of dessert, but you're going to squeeze in just one more mouthful, aren't you? If so, you are forgiven, as it is Christmas after all!

I love to put my little spin on a traditional recipe, so creating a Christmas pudding flavoured ice cream cake is just the dessert I was looking for! It has been a family tradition of ours to have this dessert every year. Bruce’s mother always made it for Christmas day, and it has been a childhood favourite with my own kids every year. I love how it includes traditional flavours that are reinterpreted into a cold, delicious dessert - perfect for a hot Australian Christmas. And best of all, this dessert can be made weeks ahead and taken out on the day!


  • 110g blanched almonds
  • 110g glace cherries
  • 55g mixed peel
  • 55g raisins
  • 55g currants
  • 1 tbsp mixed spice
  • 1 tbsp rum or brandy
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • 5 Ltr vanilla ice cream
  • Fresh berries and icing sugar for garnish

Note: You will need to start this recipe a few days ahead


  1. Toast almonds in a moderate oven for 7 – 10 minutes until golden.
  2. Mix with the cherries, peel, raisins, sultanas and currants.
  3. Mix the spices through the fruit, and then the rum or brandy. Cover bowl and stand overnight to develop the flavours. 
  4. Line a 5-litre pudding basin, or metal bowl with cling film. 
  5. Soften the ice cream, and then fold your fruit mixture through evenly. Freeze overnight.  
  6. Turn out the pudding onto a serving platter and remove cling film.  Garnish with fresh berries and a dusting of icing sugar