I know it’s a little early, but I had a hankering for Christmas pud  today, and had to do something about it! But, I wanted to stick as close as possible to my raw diet, and, I didn’t want to wait several hours for a real pudding to steam. So, time to break out a favourite raw truffle recipe , & raid the spice cabinet.
The results were divine. Not entirely pudding-like in texture (though none too shabby, neither), but the flavour is spot on.
1 & ½ cups of mixed raw nuts (chestnuts, pecans & Brazils go well in this)
Grated rind of half a lemon & half an orange
1 scant level teaspoon of mixed spice*
1 Tbs goji berries (optional, but gives it a slightly richer flavour and a few chewy bits, since the goji berries never seem to blend in properly)
1 Tbs raw agave syrup (optional)
2/3 cup mixed vine fruit or raisins
4-6 fresh pitted dates
In a food processor, process the nuts, goji berries, grated rind and spice, until the nuts are all broken down into small pieces. Add the agave syrup and vine fruit/raisins, and process again until the fruit is mostly broken down. Do a taste test, and add more agave if necessary, but remember that the dates will be adding sweetness too and Christmas pudding isn’t meant to be too sweet. (You can make this without the agave if you like, but I find the dates and vine fruit don’t quite cut through the bitterness of the spices on their own, especially if your mixed spice contains mace, cloves or a lot of nutmeg.)
Then, with the food processor running, drop in the dates one at a time, and let each one get processed in to the mix. Keep adding them until the mix starts to stick together. Once it’s nice and sticky, remove from the food processor, then break off portions of the dough and roll them in your hands to form balls – they should end up about the size of a chocolate truffle or a small walnut shell. Eat at once, or chill for a while to firm up. You can even pop them in the freezer.
If you want to make these a bit chewier, try forming the balls around a couple of raisins, or even pieces of candied peel or crystallised ginger. (If only they were prettier, they’d make a great present for someone!)
*If you don’t have any mixed spice, you can easily make your own. I use an equal mix of ground cinnamon, allspice, clove, nutmeg and ginger.