Puddings Matter

Michele Chandler from Puddings Matter visits GFR with her puddings.

Puddings Matter is the company Michele Chandler, and her partner Sue Buchanan, put together to save the great Anglo-Canadian tradition of Christmas (or Plum) pudding. Her recipe, which uses 11 different dried fruits, including figs and citrus peels, is a modification of the one she has been making for friends and family for decades. Last year, when she found herself making dozens of puddings, she decided there must be a demand for authentic Christmas puddings, and working through the incubator kitchen at FoodShare she came up with her signature recipe for The King George Pudding.

As GFR’s Jamie Drummond explained, making a traditional Christmas pudding is not easy. Chandler realize that the emblematic dessert was in danger of disappearing as the generations that knew how to make them, and were prepared to get work making them some time before the holidays slipped away. She also set up business in Upstate New York, where her husband is from and where she spends a good deal of time, when not in Toronto. There she realized Americans had not tradition of plum pudding, but were curious to references in a Christmas Carrol. At the annual Dickens Christmas festival in the Finger Lakes town of Skaneateles, Chandler has starting selling the the desserts and making converts. All of this is to say that her background as a food writer has helped, as each pudding comes with detailed instructions on how to heat them up, make hard sauce and, of course, get the right flambé going at presentation at the table.

Business, she reports, is growing steadily, and the puddings are finding their way onto store shelves across Toronto and Ontario from Niagara to Collingwood – find a list of carrying retailers here.
Malcolm Jolley is a founding editor of Good Food Revolution and Executive Director of Good Food Media, the company that publishes it. Follow him at twitter.com/malcolmjolley