375g mixed dried fruit
200ml Marsala wine
250g butter, plus extra for greasing
1 ¼ cups firmly packed brown sugar
1 cup plain flour, sifted
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon bicarbonate soda
½ teaspoon mixed spice
½ teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
½ teaspoon ground ginger
½ teaspoon cinnamon
½ cup breadcrumbs
2 cups unsalted macadamias, finely chopped
In a large bowl combine dried fruit and Marsala, cover and stand overnight.
Using an electric mixer, beat together butter and sugar until pale and fluffy, then slowly beat in eggs, one at a time. Sieve together flour, salt, bicarbonate soda and spices. Add to the butter mixture in batches, alternating with soaked fruit mixture. Stir through breadcrumbs and macadamias.
Brush a 1.8 litre-capacity pudding basin with butter, line the base with a circle of baking paper and dust with flour. Pour pudding mixture into the basin and top with another circle of baking paper. Cover with 2 layers of foil and tie with string.
Place pudding into a large saucepan with a wire rack or tea towel lining the base. Fill with enough water to come halfway up the side of the bowl. Cover and simmer for 6 hours, topping up water if needed.
To serve, remove from the saucepan and carefully remove the foil and baking paper. Place a serving plate on top, turn it upside down and lift away the basin. Serve with Marsala custard (recipe follows).
3 cups milk
⅔ cup cream
1 vanilla bean, split lengthways and seeds scraped
6 egg yolks
¼ cup golden caster sugar
¼ cup Marsala wine
Combine milk, cream, vanilla bean and seeds in a saucepan and bring to simmer over low heat. Remove vanilla bean and set aside. Whisk egg yolks, sugar and Marsala in a large bowl, whisk in warm milk mixture and return to saucepan. Stir constantly with a wooden spoon over low heat for 10 minutes or until thickened and custard coats the back of the spoon.
Tip: You can make the pudding ahead of time and keep cooled in the basin. Reheat in a large saucepan of simmering water for 2 ½ hours.