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How to make a Spotted Dick Pudding

Updated on October 14, 2016
Elsie Hagley profile image

Elsie has been cooking for sixty years and has many recipes. I'm sharing some with you, some are my mothers recipes, hope you enjoy baking.

Traditional British Dessert

I am going to share an old British pudding (which is a dessert) the Spotted Dick, it is a very weird name for a dessert, but a dessert my mother made very often, and I love it, so I am sharing it with you, hopefully, one day you too may enjoy it. The earliest recipes for spotted dick pudding are dated back as far as 1847, it is traditionally boiled in a cloth.

My mother's family came to New Zealand in early 1900 century, every time my mother cooked it, it made me happy, I loved it and still do, but must humans would properly turn their nose up when I tell you how it is made.

Let's Make Spotted Dick!

Spotted Dick Pudding Links - Link to the recipe also.

I haven't add the original Spotted Dick Recipes as it will be duplicated, so you will find the traditional recipe in the link below.

Spotted dick is made with shredded suet, all though I do not use it now, I just use butter, but if I had a packet of Shredo, (Shredded fat from animals), I would use it.

Pudding in Cloth

Little more about the spotted dick pudding

There are many things you can serve this type of dessert with, vanilla custard, treacle, ice cream, a nice syrup - lemon flavored, chocolate, whipped cream, or even straight cream, instead like my husband those types of desserts he would just put milk on it, my dad loved it just by adding sugar and straight cream, (not whipped) to it, it wasn't too bad like that, as it wasn't a sweet pudding, I used to love crunching the sugar in my mouth as I ate it.

Now the main thing that made Spotted Dick Pudding a special for me was the cooking of it in a pudding cloth, ( which is usually a unbleached calico cloth used for boiling a pudding), I liked the outside of it the pudding the best.

Preparing a new pudding cloth for boiling a stream pudding

You only need to do this the first time, once you have used it once it all good to go ahead and add your boiled pudding as below preparing for boiling the pudding.

Soak in cold water overnight next day boil it for about 20 mins, once you have done this, keep it especially for boiling puddings, I always wash it every time after use in cold water to take the pudding dough of-of it then wash in hot water using no powder, hang out to dry and always put it away for the next boiled pudding.

Preparing for boiling the pudding

Preparing for boiling the pudding add the square (it all depends on how big your pudding is but about 60 centimeters - 24 inches,) into boiling water for about a minute, drain excess water off, sprinkle about 1/2 cup of flour on the hot cloth, shake of excess flour, and pour or place your pudding onto the prepared calico cloth, grab all the outside edges together, going around making sure there are no gaps and tie tightly, (leaving a little space for the pudding to swell), with string.

Place a saucer in the bottom of the pot (to prevent pudding catching on the bottom), fill the pot about 1/3 full of building water, making sure the water is boiling, place the prepared pudding in the cloth on the saucer slowly to keep water boiling (be careful that you don't overflow the pot as you are adding the pudding), and cover with pot lid, now if it is boiling a little dry, which it will in most cases, you can add more boiling water to it, ( just boil extra water in electric jug and add boiling water to the pot quickly, on the edge of the pot, not the cooking pudding).

The photo above is a boiled Christmas pudding, it gives you an idea of how to tie the cloth when making the Spotted Dick dessert.

This is my recipe that I cooked for many years for my own family back in the 1970's they loved it.

It is a version like Spotted Dick recipe.

Cook Time

Prep Time: 20 mins

Total Time: 2 1/2 hours

Serves: 4

Spicy Spotted Dick

  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 cup mixed fruit - sultanas currants raisins
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon mixed spice
  • 1 cup boiling water in which is dissolved1 teaspoon of baking soda
  • 2 ozs butter


  1. Method:
  2. Put all ingredients in a bowl except the boiling water.
  3. Rub in the butter.
  4. Add the boiling water and mix well.
  5. It may appear a bit sloppy, but it will turn out a lovely pudding.
  6. TIe up in cloth as preparing for boiling a pudding above.
  7. Boil two hours.
  8. Serve well with vanilla custard.
  9. Hope you enjoy it, great for a cold winters day.
  10. If you are making for 6 or more, double the recipe, boiling a little longer, it won't take much longer.
3 stars from 2 ratings of Spicy Spotted Dick

Spotted Dick Pudding

A traditional cloth boiled Christmas Pudding still showing the skin.

If it is of any interest to you.

The photo above of a Christmas Pudding boiled in a cloth, the cloth has been removed and it's left like that to mature.

The pudding is aged for a month or even a year. It can age for a long time because it has so much alcohol in it, it never spoils.

© 2013 Elsie Hagley

Have you ever made a Spotted Dick Boiled Pudding?

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    • Elsie Hagley profile image

      Elsie Hagley 3 years ago from New Zealand

      AliciaC: Spotted Dick was one of my faverite puddings as a child. As you said about having it in your school lunch, I never did, but if there was ever any over, we would eat it with butter spread on it like a loaf. I used to love eating it cold like that also.

      I haven't made one for sometime must make one, I know my husband would like it also. Thanks for visiting and the comment.

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 3 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      I used to love the spotted dick with syrup that was often served as part of my school lunch when I lived in Wales. I haven't eaten spotted dick since childhood, though. Thank you very much for sharing the recipe. I'll try it soon.

    • Elsie Hagley profile image

      Elsie Hagley 3 years ago from New Zealand

      @DeborahDian: Have you ever cooked one, if you do I think you will enjoy it, completely different taste to a steam pudding, very yummy.

    • DeborahDian profile image

      Deborah Carr 3 years ago from Orange County, California

      Ahh! A day just for me! LOL

    • BritFlorida profile image

      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      @Elsie Hagley: I think you're right. But the British are known for naming things in odd ways :)

    • Elsie Hagley profile image

      Elsie Hagley 3 years ago from New Zealand

      @BritFlorida: Thanks for selecting this lens, once someone has eaten spotted dick pudding I am sure they will be hooked on it as my family are. Sometimes I think it's the name that put people off of eating it, but once tasted it will never be forgotten.

    • BritFlorida profile image

      Jackie Jackson 3 years ago from Fort Lauderdale

      Hi! Just to let you know that I selected this lens for promotion today in the Spot On UK social media. Hope it helps to spread the word about this tasty British pud :)

    • Elsie Hagley profile image

      Elsie Hagley 4 years ago from New Zealand

      @Kritty LM: It's a dessert that is coming back into fashion, with winter approaching, it would warm the cockles of anyone heart, very tasty and enjoyable dessert with some hot vanilla custard.

    • Kritty LM profile image

      Kritty LM 4 years ago

      i loved this dessert when I lived in London. Also apple crumble! Thanks for the memory.