Russian Pistachio Christmas Pudding

10 servings.

2 cups Flour
2 teaspoons Baking powder
1/2 teaspoons Baking soda
1/2 teaspoon Salt
1/2 cup Melted, cooled butter or margarine
1 cup Sugar
6 Eggs, separated
3/4 cup Milk
3/4 cup Chopped, natural American pistachios
1/2 cup Currants
2 tablespoons Grated lemon peel
2 tablespoons Grated orange peel


Mix flour with baking powder, baking soda and salt. Using wooden spoon, beat butter with sugar. Beat in egg yolks until smooth. Mix in flour mixture alternately with milk. Mix in pistachios, currants and citrus peels. Whip egg whites until stiff; fold into batter. Turn into a well-buttered 2-quart crown-type ring mold or pudding mold sprinkled with sugar. It is best to use a mold that has a tube in center. It should be only about two-thirds full. Place tight-fitting lid on mold or tightly close with foil. Place on rack in bottom of kettle that has 1-inch boiling water in bottom. Cover kettle and steam over simmering water for 1 hour 20 minutes or until a pick inserted into center comes out hot and nearly dry. Remove lid from mold. Cool 10 minutes then loosen around edges and around center tube with long bamboo pick. Gently invert onto rack. Serve warm or cool with Sabayon Sauce.

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fun facts

Pistachios, when eaten with high-carbohydrate foods, may result in lower than expected blood sugar levels, an important factor in reducing risk of diabetes.

According to a Penn State University study, it is suggested that pistachios reduce the body's biological response to stress.

One serving of pistachios has as much potassium (300mg, 8%) as an orange (250mg, 7%).

Pistachios are high in phytosterols which may lower cholesterol levels and decrease the risk of heart disease. In animal studies phytosterols have been shown to potentially have anti-cancer properties.

One serving of pistachios is 49 nuts, more than any other tree nut.

Forty-nine pistachios serve up to 20 percent of your Daily Value of B6, about the same as half an avocado.

You can obtain more dietary fiber from a serving of pistachios (3g) than a 1/2 cup of cooked broccoli, and the same amount of dietary fiber as an orange or an apple — approximately 10 percent of the Daily Value.

Just a single serving of pistachios provides you with the same amount of protein in a one-ounce serving of soybeans and can serve as a protein alternative to meat, poultry or beans according to the USDA Food Guide Pyramid.

Pistachios are a naturally cholesterol-free snack and contain just 1.5 grams of saturated fat.

Celebrate the greatness of nuts! October 22 is National Nut Day and February 26 is National Pistachio Day!