Waddesdon Manor Christmas pudding

This Christmas pudding was served to James Armand de Rothschild and his wife, Dorothy, at Waddesdon Manor, Buckinghamshire, in 1939. Wartime shortages were hurting even the affluent Waddesdon household, and their chef, Tissot, cut down on brandy and spices in his mixture.

Christmas puddings made to a 1939 recipe from Waddesdon, Buckinghamshire
  • Preparation time 30 minutes (prep. time)
  • Cooking time 6 hours (cooking time)
  • Serves 2 x 1.2-litre puddings


  • 225g suet
  • 115g plain flour
  • 225g toasted white breadcrumbs
  • 450g raisins
  • 115g sultanas
  • 115g currants
  • 225g grated apple
  • 225g dark brown sugar
  • 85g thick-cut marmalade
  • 5 eggs
  • 2 tbsp milk
  • 55g chopped almonds
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp grated nutmeg
  • 1 tsp powdered cloves
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 lemon zest and juice 
  • 4 tbsp rum
  • 4 tbsp barley wine or strong ale


For the brandy butter

  • 175g soft unsalted butter
  • 5 tbsp icing sugar
  • 4 tbsp brandy


1. Generously butter two,1.2-litre (2 pint) pudding basins.
2. Mix all the ingredients together and fill pudding basins with the mixture.
3. Top with a buttered disc of greaseproof paper and wrap the basins in a double layer of foil to make them watertight.
4. Steam or boil for six hours, topping up with boiling water when necessary.
5. Serve with brandy butter.

Brandy butter:

​1. Cream the butter with the sugar and gradually beat in the brandy.
2. Spoon into a small bowl and refrigerate the butter until set.

This recipe was first published in the National Trust Magazine Autumn 2017 edition.

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Recipes round-up 

If you love making and baking food then here are some wonderful Christmas recipes inspired by our places. Take a look through for some festive culinary inspiration.