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Restaurant Diner in City Finds £300 in Pudding

A diner in the City of London discovered a gold British Sovereign worth £300, or $487, in a bowl of Christmas pudding while lunching at an area restaurant.

Jane Gilbert runs insurance firms specializing in coverage for kidnap ransom and found the gold coin at a birthday lunch with her stepsons.

Typically, Christmas pudding is served on Christmas day and is sometimes known as plum pudding. Many households have their own recipe for Christmas pudding handed down through generations. The ingredients of plum pudding are traditionally difficult to obtain at the time of Christmas, though today they are easily obtained. Raisins, known as plums in medieval England, currants, cherries, almonds, suet, prunes, butter, brown sugar, and the fine grated peel of oranges and lemons contribute to this holiday dish.

It is common practice to include small silver coins in the pudding mixture, which is prepared four to five weeks prior to the dish being served. The typical choice was a silver threepence or sixpence piece. The coin was believed to bring wealth in the coming year.

Jane Gilbert and her two sons ordered the plum pudding at The Factory House in Leadenhall Market as a run on the £6 ($9.74 USD) a portion desert took place. Diners were hoping to discover the gold sovereign in a promotion publicized in house by the small restaurant.

The Factory House, which advertises itself as a refuge for the modern day industrialist, offers traditional English meals from a light breakfast of Greek yoghurt to the Unabridged English Breakfast of bacon, sausage, hash browns, beans, egg, mushrooms, tomato, and black pudding.

Ms. Gilbert of South London said she had a lovely surprise when it started blinking at her in the bottom of her plate.

The British Sovereign was struck by the Royal Mint, weighing 7.99 grams and consisting of 7.32 grams of pure gold. The coin contains a striking portrayal of Saint George killing a dragon, engraved by Benedetto Pistrucci and contained by the coins from their mintage in 1817. The Sovereigns were minted from 1817 to 1917, in 1925, and from 1957 to the present day.

Ms. Gilbert added that her family plans to put the gold sovereign into future Gilbert family Christmas plum puddings to continue the tradition.

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