Stirring Up Trouble

Sunday, 25 November 2012


A copy of the Book of Common Prayer is an odd thing for a non-Christian to have in their possession. Nonetheless I have a copy, and each year on the 25th Sunday after Trinity I open it to read the collect. For today is Stir-Up Sunday. Traditionally this is the Sunday when we are not only reminded to stir up our wills and bring forth the fruit of good works but also to stir up our Christmas puddings plenteously with dried fruit.

This I have done using a slightly adapted and reduced version of Delia's Christmas pud.

Tradition has it that each member of the family has to give it a stir and make a wish. My family takes a slightly anarchic view of this tradition.


Katie is the least anarchic and gives the pud a good solid stir.


Note the traditional sixpence.


My husband, however, was not in the mood for tradition. 'Look, a bum!' he said in a pleased voice.


'Ooh, I know what I'm going to make!' said Tom,
'Look, you are supposed to be stirring not sculpting' I say.
Fortunately the bowl was not really big enough for Tom's idea to work.
Trust me you don't want to know what it was.


At last I persuaded them to stir properly.

27 comments:

  1. I am still giggling - in fact laughed out loud and had to explain it all to my husband. Oh, simple things...........

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  2. Barb_in_GA3:20 pm GMT

    I'm giggling right along with Lizzi. Being from the States, I wasn't aware of "Stir-up Sunday". I may have to make a Christmas pudding this year.

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  3. I made my Christmas Puddings today too - I always make a wish, and usually get Richard to make one too, but he was out today,so just me to make a wish. I love the idea of reading the collect before you make the pudding, I will have to dig my book of common prayer out of the loft for next year. I love these Christmas traditions that build up in families - my pudding traditions involve a trip to a lovely village the day before to get beer for the pudding straight from the tap, and buying Christmas ornaments while I'm there.

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  4. Just made Delia's pud too - minus bum cheeks! Were you like me - did you find that the rest of the Guinness slipped down a treat after all that stirring?!

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    1. Darn it - I've just poured some wine. It's in the fridge waiting for me to drink it too. Never mind I'm sure I'll find room for it. Thanks for reminding me!

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  5. This is so funny. Made me giggle.
    My Nanna used to trick us at Christmas when we were kids 7 of us. We all wished for the sixpence in 'our' piece of the pudding. We could never understand how we ALL managed to get one. It was like magic. When she was 80 she told me her secret. "I put 7 sixpences in my apron pocket. As I dished up a piece of pudding for each kid, I slipped one in."

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    1. I like her style. I've only had my sixpence a few years, I received it as change -it was pretending to be a 5p piece.

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  6. Anonymous5:51 pm GMT

    Why didn't george have a stir? Ithink i'll make my Christmas pud tomorrow. ME

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    1. He was out. Now he is back and has stirred.

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  7. I think the comedians in your family need elephant knickers for Christmas. Don't you?

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    1. Excellent suggestion Lynn!

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  8. I can't deny it. I've bought one.
    I plead reduced kitchen circumstances and hope to be forgiven.

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  9. Your husband and mine would get on!

    That said, it's years since I made a pud! And my kitchen circumstances are not reduced at all. Problem here is the kids don't like the stuff and I love it but it doesn't agree with my digestion. What I will make is some Christmas Pudding ice cream :)

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  10. Small boys never really do grow up, do they?

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  11. Stir-up-Sunday is such a lovely tradition, trouble is none of my lot will eat Christmas pud, I'm the only one in the family who likes it. I remember when I was a child we never ate this year's pudding until the following year, it had to be left to mature for a whole year. I don't think that sort of thing is approved of these days!
    Carol

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  12. I don't make puds. My late mother used to make the most delicious pud, a very light one, not a dark one, and we would have this with a hot white sauce - you make that with cornflower and sugar, as you would make custard, but substituting cornflower for the custard powder, and at the end, adding a splash of brandh. Absolutely delicious. I can't possibly emulate her wonderful puds, so I buy one, but I always make a Christmas cake and that would've been made today had I not been cooking a special lunch for the family. But it will be made this week. So it could be Stir-up Week!
    Margaret P

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  13. I don't find it strange that you have a Book of Common Prayer. I have one and I come from what would be called the Nonconformist tradition. But since the BCP has had such a major influence on the English language (along with Shakespeare, Milton, and the King James Bible), it is a reference work I cherish. As for Christmas pudding, I haven't had it in years. My mother always used to make a version when I was growing up (with ingredients that would make you shudder), but my husband and kids can't stand it. I really miss it though. Or maybe it's the brandy hard sauce that I really miss.

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    1. You are right Kari, the BCP is a work of English literature which is why I have it. I too, am from a non-conformist background.

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  14. Sue, may I tell you once again that you are a very, very amusing lady!

    That Christmas pudding really does look wonderful, as did the marmalade in the prior post. With my tiny kitchen's deficiencies, I vicariously imagine all sorts of delicious baking and cooking via your posts.

    Thank you! xo

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  15. I liked the story of your pudding stirring ceremony and how it was regarded by each member of the family! The pudding mixture is looking good!

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  16. By the way re your comment over at Ali's I had a rather surreal experience in the Gudrun Sjoden shop last week and came out empty-handed. I was driven out by a fellow shopper and her friend who fastened their overenthusiastic attention on me and everything I tried on. In the end I couldn't actually decide for myself whether I liked the things or not and wondered if they were on commission!

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    1. How bizarre. I haven't visited the shop but am an enthusiastic recipient of parcels from Sweden. Not sure any of it really suits me but it is comfy and distinctive.

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  17. I haven't made a pudding for years, but I know I should..... Just too easy to buy one, when there's really only me who likes it.

    Your son..... honestly, boys!

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  18. I'm a fellow non-Christian traditionalist and tormented by raisins: I love the rich and comforting tradition of mince pies and pudding but the more I age the more I turn against raisins, sultanas, currants, etc, and would rather have a nice slice of killjoy cheese.

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