WHEN I was little, a Saturday treat was biking to the sweet shop with 50p clutched tightly in a sweaty fist. There are so many things about this simple childhood pleasure that seem anachronistic three decades on: sugar is anathema, likewise cycling without a helmet (and unaccompanied on the road) and, since Covid-19, that less nostalgic habit of spreading your dirty mitts’ germs throughout the penny-sweet boxes as you carefully tot up fizzy cola bottles and foamy mushrooms.
And so it is with some caution that I relay my ancient recipe for a pony’s Christmas pudding. Benji, a strawberry roan 12-hander with a habit of stopping at the first fence to poo, wolfed the lot with no ill-effects, but it is stuffed with sugar and undoubtedly the very last thing an elderly pony predestined for Cushing’s should have been eating. Even on Christmas Day. My wiser self would have proffered half a carrot.
Mercifully, we now have equine nutritionists to devise far more sensible alternatives for an equine Christmas pudding, for those who feel like indulging their pony without sending him into sugar orbit. Here are a variety of recipes, from Benji’s syrupy feast to some equally delicious but healthier versions. Riders are forgiven for having a sneaky nibble behind the tack room door...
SPILLERS product manager Sarah Nelson incorporates soaked high-fibre cubes in her festive concoction.
“This would make a great base and should mould easily into a ‘pudding’ without needing to add melted sugar and treacle.
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