What Makes This Spotted Dick So Good? A Classic British Steamed Pudding With Vanilla Custard

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The name might be a little suspect but the pudding takes a seat at the top table of British desserts. A moist steamed pudding laced with currants and flavoured with lemon zest. Served with a proper custard. I’ll also show how to steam a pudding properly, and practical solutions to ensure the pudding doesn’t stick and how to remove it from the bowl.

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This recipe makes enough to fill a 1 litre pudding basin / bowl.


300g Self Raising flour
150g Butter (beef suet was used originally, you could use that, or vegetarian suet, lard, or a combination)
75g Caster sugar
Pinch of Salt
100g Currants
Zest of 2 lemons
160ml milk

Vanilla Custard:

4 eggs yolks
40g caster sugar
150ml Full fat milk (I used 3.5% fat)
150ml Cream (I used 35% fat)
1 vanilla pod

Combine the flour and salt into the bowl. Dice the butter and either rub into the flour by hand to create a fine breadcrumb like texture, or pulse in a food processor.

Add the sugar, lemon zest and currants to the bowl, mix and then add in about three quarters of the milk and mix. You are shooting for the same texture as I showed in the video. Slowly add the remaining until you’ve reached that texture. If your flour is really thirsty you may need to add a little more.

Mix with a spoon but don’t knead. Generously grease a pudding basin and add a circle shaped piece of non stick baking paper to the bottom. Add the pudding mix to the basin, press down gently, top with a non stock cartouche (baking paper circle) and then cover the bowl with silver foil. You can use string to seal and create a handle, or you could improvise a handle out of non stick paper or silver foil.

You need a pot large enough to take the pudding basin and something to sit the basin on. I use an old kitchen cloth but you could use a pastry cutter or improvise with something else (obviously heat resistant). Place it in the pan and add enough boiling water to cover the trivet and come a third of the way up the bowl. Place the lid on the pot and simmer for two hours. You may need to top the water level up with more boiling water from time to time.

Gently run a palette knife around the edge of the bowl to release a little. Turn out onto a plate and serve with the custard!

To make the custard.

Split the vanilla pod and scrape out the seeds and add to the milk and the cream. Bring to a simmer. Whisk the egg yolks and the sugar together and pour over the milk and cream mixture while whisking. Add back to the pan and gently warm on the heat until thickened. This needs to be a nice thick custard.

Enjoy… Let me know what you think! Cheers, Philip


James Sheridan says:

"Martha! Come hear the pudding singing in the copper!"

Copernicus Worm says:

Steamed puddings do really well in a slow cooker – no need to keep topping up with water.

Gui AT says:

Love your recipes! Great channel! Will we be getting more episodes on the full english breakfeast? Would love to get a baked beans recipe from you!

Graham Turner says:

Lovely recipe for one of my favourite puds. An aunt used to do this like a Swiss roll and bake it.
I was expecting some adult comments on this one so congrats on getting away with it 😄

jonnifjader says:


CULINAMAX recipes and techniques says:

I like everything about it except the name. Sounds like a horrible disease lol.

Hans Hirsch says:

What a pain in the dick

Mally Flower says:

The name is so cringe. Sorry but I’m sure it tastes lovely

Hall.p says:

Really doesn’t need to be called a spotted dick but who am I?

Peter James O'Connor says:

According to Wikipedia, the term "dick" and "dog" were dialectal varients of "dough" in 19th Century Britain (or maybe just England, idk).

poopsy la piss says:

nothin like a spot of dick for pudding right?

i'm sorry, someone had to… looks tasty though

Robert M says:

Maybe just some chocolate nibs instead of dried fruit? Not a fan of anything like a raisin.

DeLuXe_ says:

Im i still watching YouTube?

DeLuXe_ says:

I had to read this title two times………

Delia Laiwoo says:

Ilove it i want to learn more that . Thanks sir .

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