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Cooking: Spotted Dick Pudding with Custard A strange named English Favourite

Just Cooked Spotted Dick


Spotted Dick Pudding

Puddings and Cakes.

Now I know what this sounds like, but bear with me! We English tend to have a funny sense of humour when it comes to food! believe it or not, spotted dick pudding is delicious! Yes I know it sounds like a tropical spotty thing, but please curb your somewhat imaginative minds and take notice please!

The reason why it is called spotted is because it is, well, spotted. This is because it is full of fruit, like currants and sultana's.The reason why it is called dick is because well, er, ha ha got you there! It is because they believe it comes from the German word dicht, which means thick. There. You got your explanation so please turn your minds to the cooking now! Thanks!

Evidently it is a very old recipe, first noticed in 1850 in the book The modern housewife. I have enjoyed this pudding ever since I was a school. I couldn't bare most of the school dinner's, but I always looked forward to a bit of spotted dick pudding for afters. Ha.

Making Spotted Dick



There are quite a few different ingredients that you add to your pudding, but here I will show you how to make the basic spotted dick pudding.

100g/4 oz of Self Raising Flour. some people prefer to use plain flour but I always use self raising because it seems to work better.

A small pinch of salt

75g/ 3oz Breadcrumbs

75g/ 3oz Shredded Suet. I always use Atora as it has the best consistency

50g/ 2oz caster sugar, but if you don't have any, regular sugar is fine

175g/ 6oz currants or sultanas. You can also add cherries or any other cut up fruit that you wish to add. I often use apple as it gives it a nice tangy taste.

Grated rind of one Lemon. Once again it is entirely up to you if you wish to add this, all depending on the fruit that you have added.

And last but not least 5 tsps of milk

Spotted Dick with Custard


British puddings

How To Make Spotted Dick

This is really easy, in fact it probably is one of the most simple foods to make. To start, just mix all the dry ingredients in a bowl and keep mixing until they are bound together.

When the mixture is ready, make a small dent in the middle and pour in the milk. Then mix together until it forms a smooth dough.

Take the dough out of the bowl and knead it until it is smooth.

Sprinkle flour onto a smooth surface and, taking your rolling pin, roll it out until it is approx 9ins by 11ins.

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Now boil a large pan of water.

When the water has boiled, place the pudding inside a clean towel, allowing for expansion, or use greaseproof paper, and place the pudding in a steamer or you can actually boil it in the water. The best method is to use a big pan for the water, and place the pudding, wrapped, inside a smaller bowl so that it doesn't get too wet. Place the bowl in the pan and cover.

Keep an eye on it! I know this sounds obvious, but believe me when I say, if it boils dry it can do all manner of strange things! Like explode! Trust me, my mother has done this in the past!

Make sure you cook it for approx two hours.

When it has finished cooking, remove it from the pan and leave for a few moments. otherwise you can burn yourself on the cloth! Done that too! Um!

Then just remove from the cloth and serve. And don't forget to add loads of yummy custard!

New: Roast beef and Yorkshire pudding

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Nell Rose (author) from England on August 23, 2013:

Kopytov, not sure why you commented, not sure why you even came here.....never heard of facebook?????! posted as spam, as usual.....sigh!

Nell Rose (author) from England on January 12, 2013:

Hi mary, thanks for reading as always, nell

Hi teaches, thanks glad you liked it, nell

Hi Deborah, lol! what did you think it was? thanks!

Deborah Neyens from Iowa on January 12, 2013:

Thanks God I finally know what this is. I've had a can of it sitting in the hutch of my kitchen for a few years now, ever since I found it hidden in my pantry. (Thanks to my sister-in-law.)

Dianna Mendez on January 11, 2013:

I would love this with the custard sauce. And it would make a great dessert for company. Thanks for the share.

Mary Hyatt from Florida on January 11, 2013:

Very interesting recipe here. Thanks for converting grams to oz. Some Hubbers don't do that, and I never know how to convert their measurements.

I voted this UP, etc.

Nell Rose (author) from England on January 11, 2013:

Hi midget, thanks so much, and glad you liked it, nell

Nell Rose (author) from England on January 11, 2013:

Hi lovedoctor, thanks for reading, nell

Nell Rose (author) from England on January 11, 2013:

Hi Maria, Aw what's wrong with the name? lol! thanks for reading, nell

Nell Rose (author) from England on January 11, 2013:

Haha! thanks paula, yep we are the bad un's as my mum used to call me! thanks as always, nell

Suzie from Carson City on January 10, 2013:

Nell! Just wait until I catch up with that little devil, Sunshine for bringing out the spotted dick again! You young girls around here are getting bolder and bolder, every day! You too Maria!

Maria Jordan from Jeffersonville PA on January 10, 2013:


My very serious comment is that I know from your delicious looking photography and detailed description, I would love this...if I was not told the name first. And I know that is purely psychological.

My juvenile jab is...oh sure...the flour had to be self raising?? See, I have this evil twin and she just pops out here and there.

Great job... Voted UP and UABI. Hugs, Maria

lovedoctor926 on January 10, 2013:

Haha! Interesting name for pudding, but it looks good! voting up interesting & entertaining.

Michelle Liew from Singapore on January 10, 2013:

Ooh, it is delicious, Wow. Will definitely tweet, share and pin this!

Nell Rose (author) from England on November 14, 2012:

Haha! Hiya Peanut, yes we brits come up with some stupid names for stuff! thanks for reading, nell

Tara Carbery from Cheshire, UK on November 12, 2012:

Hee hee. The name always makes me chuckle. I always think of acne ridden naked men!!! I personally don't like it as I hate sultana's and raisins but I couldn't not comment on a hub with 'SPOTTED DICK' in the title :)

Nell Rose (author) from England on November 12, 2012:

Hi jools, oh yes M & s custard, now your talking! lol! thanks!

Nell Rose (author) from England on November 12, 2012:

Hi effer, lol! oh they are delicious! hee hee! thanks for the laugh!

Nell Rose (author) from England on November 12, 2012:

Hi pete, lol! yes I can see why you called it sultana pudding! lol! and treacle pudding! oh now I want one really badly! haha! thanks for reading, nell

Nell Rose (author) from England on November 12, 2012:

Hi beth, thanks so much, and glad you liked it, nell

Beth Perry from Tennesee on November 12, 2012:

Nell, this sounds so delicious! I'll bookmark this one for sure.

Pete from Ontario, Canada on November 12, 2012:

This was a regular in our house growing up although my Mum just called it "Sultana Pudding" for obvious reasons (4 boys with filthy teenage minds!). She'd also make "Treacle Pudding" which was suet pudding with a copious helping of treacle in the bottom (or top once it was flipped out). Always served with custard, which is actually very good on its own.

Suzie from Carson City on November 12, 2012:

Nell.........Spotted Dick??!!......You've just done what no one has ever done.....rendered Effer SPEECHLESS.

Psst.........Nell...Shhhhh.........what's wrong with you, girlfriend? We must NEVER eat spotted dicks.

We need to talk! Seriously ..and SOON!!!!!...............................

Jools Hogg from North-East UK on November 12, 2012:

Nell, I am quite partial to this particular dessert - yummy! Your photos made me want a chunk in a bowl with M&S custard poured over it. I also like it with cream.

Nell Rose (author) from England on November 12, 2012:

Lol! thanks linda!

Linda Bilyeu from Orlando, FL on November 12, 2012:

Well I thought I heard it all, yet I still haven't....obviously :)

Nell Rose (author) from England on September 03, 2011:

Hi, JamaGenee, maybe you will come over again, and buy loads of them next time! lol

Joanna McKenna from Central Oklahoma on September 01, 2011:

Yes, I'm still kicking myself for not buying a couple of the really pretty tea pots I saw while in your country. And a toast rack. Sigh. ;D

Nell Rose (author) from England on September 01, 2011:

Hi, JamaGenee, ha ha we do have funny names over here for food! but yes our kitchen stuff can be really lovely, especially Tea pots!

Joanna McKenna from Central Oklahoma on August 31, 2011:

The proprietress of the B&B farm I stayed at in the West Country had a tons of cookbooks. One called something like "Old Tarts" looked so interesting I tracked down copies for myself AND my daughters when I got back to the States. Besides many yummy recipes, it has several Brit to American measurement conversion and ingredient substitution charts which I'll be consulting so Spotted Dick on this side of the Pond *might* turn out the same as on your side.

Personally, I think I prefer the Brit method of measuring ingredients by weight, or maybe I simply find your kitchen scales charming! (Same for your pressed coffee pots...) ;D

Nell Rose (author) from England on March 06, 2011:

Hi, patrick, thanks for reading it, cheers nell

patrick on March 05, 2011:

will b delicious

Nell Rose (author) from England on February 17, 2011:

Hi, PaperNotes, ha ha I know, I grew up with it called this, I think our dirty minds came after the poor innocent word! lol thanks for reading it, cheers nell

PaperNotes on February 15, 2011:

Seems delicious but I hope it would be given another name!

Nell Rose (author) from England on December 13, 2010:

Hi, Eileen, Ha Ha oh dear! that's the trouble with dodgy named things, there is always someone out there that gets all uppity about it! thanks for making me laugh, and for reading it, cheers nell

Eileen Hughes from Northam Western Australia on December 12, 2010:

Great memories of mum making this and the rubbishing ozzies made when we told them the name of pudding.

actually its a wonder the name didn't get caught as offensive.

I tried to register in something (cant remember where now) and it wouldn't let me. Said it was offensive. Yes it was my address. I live in dick street. couldn't change it so in the end had to type it as d i c k street. weird. great hub thank have bookmarked this.

Nell Rose (author) from England on December 11, 2010:

Hi, kitty, it is funny isn't it? thanks, nell

Kitty Fields from Summerland on December 10, 2010:

too funny and informative. :) i may try to make some spotted dick myself one of these days.

Nell Rose (author) from England on November 29, 2010:

Hi, Gypsy Willow, I must admit I thought I would too! but that's why I put the word cooking in front! lol I will certainly come and check it out, thanks again nell

Hi, CMHypno, I remember it well! this one is a little bit better though and you can get as much custard as you like to dollop all over it! thanks nell

CMHypno from Other Side of the Sun on November 28, 2010:

Unfortunately, I have only had the primary school lunch version, so I should revisit 'Spotted Dick' and try out your recipe!

Gypsy Willow from Lake Tahoe Nevada USA , Wales UK and Taupo New Zealand on November 27, 2010:

I wrote a hub about this very spotted dick pudding a while back and it got flagged by hub pages! Check it out!

Nell Rose (author) from England on November 27, 2010:

Hi, Nellieanna, you are so right, I should be ashamed at some of the things that I eat and drink, and should look out for my long term health, I do go walking a lot though, so I think I can get away with a pudding occasionally, but I must admit to adding a few pounds these last few weeks! back to the Gym I think! lol thanks again nell

Hi, De Greek, mine are not much better when it comes to cooking! ha ha but you are welcome anytime, thanks again nell

De Greek from UK on November 27, 2010:

I shall wait for you to invite me to try one of yours. Too complicated for my limited mental abilities :-))

Nellieanna Hay from TEXAS on November 27, 2010:

I don't like to be a spoil-sport. But I confess I'd rather have you around and healthy than any other alternative. It's still a fascinating recipe and yummy looking treat. It's seldom a waste of our time to use moderation, anyway. Even drinking water to excess can have negative effects. Once in awhile for anything is not going to ruin our future! LOL. I may indulge in something delicious just for the fun of it later myself! I do that occasionally and without a single twinge of regret. But I also am really glad to be active and healthy at my ripe old age and could wish nothing less for others. LOL.

Nell Rose (author) from England on November 26, 2010:

Hi, Nellieanna, thanks for coming back, I didn't realise that, it seems that you can't win! lol I will just eat it occasionally then, thanks again nell

Hi, Polly, it is a funny name isn't it? but I do love it, and it is well worth while making it, if only occasionally, I bet it made your husband laugh! ha ha thanks as always nell

Nell Rose (author) from England on November 26, 2010:

Hi, carolina muscle, do you hop the pond a lot? ha ha I usually use a plane, you don't get so wet! hee hee thanks again as always, I will be over shortly!

Pollyannalana from US on November 25, 2010:

My husband was telling me about this weeks ago he had seen online somewhere and was laughing about it, so when I saw it here I just had to see what it was and it does look delicious. I love things like that, that don't look so rich and sweet.

Nellieanna Hay from TEXAS on November 25, 2010:

That is very useful information, Nell. As you describe the way the suet bonds with the flour in small pieces, it's very much the same as cutting in butter or some other kind of shortening with flour in making pastry dough, especially pie crusts. In the cooked finished product it gives it a flakey, tender texture - and prevents the gluten in flour from becoming tough or leathery.

Palm oil is tasty but it is one of the saturated vegetable fats, contributing to cholesterol in the arteries which can lead to heart attacks and strokes. Then the process of hardening oils into a solid rather than their natural liquid state via a process called hydrogenation, makes them even more risky. Most animal fats are naturally hydrogenated, in fact which is why they are dry and/or hard.

Plus even the most heart-healthy vegetable oils, when subjected to high heat become risky. sigh. Nothing is perfect huh?

Having eaten a big Thanksgiving dinner today, including many items I normally don't include in my diet, I say go for Spotted Dick occasionally and to heck with cholesterol for a moment! LOL.

carolina muscle from Charlotte, North Carolina on November 24, 2010:

The next time I hop the pond, I'm gonna have it!!!

Nell Rose (author) from England on November 24, 2010:

Hi, Wendy, ha ha now you have got to go and ask them! lol I never even thought about the name until I wrote on here and thought, maybe some people might not know it! thanks again nell

WeNdYpOoPoO from Hudson Valley NY on November 24, 2010:


I am not sure what people would say if I asked if they would like some spotted Dick Pudding....Maybe I will make it and see. :P

Nell Rose (author) from England on November 24, 2010:

Hi, saleheen, thank you for your comment, I appreciate you reading it, cheers nell

Hi, Audrey, it is delicious! specially with the custard! bit fattening but hey ho, who cares? ha ha thanks as always nell

Hi, Wendy, no it is just us silly English and our stupid names! ha ha it is a lovely pudding though! thanks again nell

Hi, steph, I got a few more funny named foods to come yet! ha ha thanks again nell

Hi, Hello Hello, I never really knew either, but I thought I would turn my hand to it and see if it turned out okay, thanks again as always nell

Hi, Nellieanna, after reading your comment, I shot over and took a look to see if I could find an alternative for the suet. evidently you can have a vegetarian suet made from palm oil. The packaged suets seem to be very dry as they are mixed with flour to make them look like very small half inch pieces of dry flour. it looks just like flour until you sqeeze it and then you can see the fat, I wasn't aware of what suet was actually taken from, and it has put me of now so from now on I will use the vegetarian one! I hope that helps, thanks nell

Nellieanna Hay from TEXAS on November 24, 2010:

Interesting ingredients and very interesting preparation technique. It has the "flavour" of a food from antiquity. I have a cookbook of older recipes from early American kitchens. They are different - naturally, since they didn't have supermarkets providing the ingredients and the cook stoves were far from our modern ones. It's like stepping back in history.

I never heard of Spotted Dick Pudding With Custard before now. Guess it's one of those foods one should at least have heard of before it's over!

I puzzled over the "shredded suet". I had Home Economics cooking classes from Junior High eons ago, on through college, so I'd heard of suet & knew it's the hard fat from animals' kidneys - not too appealing, & must be quite saturated. But animal fats have been used in cooking all sorts of dishes, including pastries for countless generations, long before people even thought of using vegetable oil products that way. I guess suet may be among the more elegant of them, next to butter. Stores (especially some that cater to ethnic cuisines) still sell lard for cooking. Don't know about commercial availability of suet, though. I avoid almost all fats for health's sake, in any case.

But this recipe is fascinating. I also wondered when and how suet was added in to the preparation of the Spotted Dick since it wasn't mentioned specifically. I finally figured that in its shredded state, it goes in with dry ingredients. I usually think of the dry ingredients as being the flour, sugar, salt and any dry baking powder or baking soda; - in other words, items with no moisture content. But maybe shredded suet would mix in with the others nicely. It sounds a little like "cutting in" the shortening or butter to the dry ingredients for pie crust. If one wanted to substitute butter in the Spotted Dick recipe, it might work better if the butter is cut in after mixing up the flour, sugar and salt, as a suggestion for making that work. One can cut it in with a pastry cutter or two table knives worked against each other's edges in rapid motions.

I'd hoped you'd supply the recipe for the custard sauce, too, Nell. That really looks yummy!

Hello, hello, from London, UK on November 24, 2010:

After all the years in England, 48, I never knew how to make it. Thanks Nell and for all the explanation.

Stephanie Marshall from Bend, Oregon on November 23, 2010:

that name... that name!!! Wow - too funny! I am totally curious.

WeNdYpOoPoO from Hudson Valley NY on November 23, 2010:


lol I had to double take the name of this. I thought it was a spelling error but it looks good.

Audrey Kirchner from Washington on November 23, 2010:

I've never heard of it but by George, Nell if you recommend it, it must be fab!

Nell Rose (author) from England on November 23, 2010:

Hi, TheListLady, I had totally forgotten about the tins until I started researching this, and then I saw them! lol It has been a while since I ate one of those, I usually buy the frozen one, thanks again nell

Nell Rose (author) from England on November 22, 2010:

Hi, always exploring, I am sure you would love it! even if it is a bit stodgy! lol thanks again nell

Hi, Christopher, I always heap loads of custard on it! sometimes even the whole tin....! thanks again nell

TheListLady from New York City on November 22, 2010:

I've been a fan of spotted dick for a long time. I've had it while visiting England - and then bought those fun supermarket cans with the name emblazoned on it to bring back to NYC as gifts - a big hit.

Thanks a million for the recipe! Rated up!

Nell Rose (author) from England on November 22, 2010:

Hi, Wayne, I wondered who would be the first to make a comment about the name! it is strange, but I grew up with it and never thought about it before, until I went to write about it!....ha ha cheers nell

Nell Rose (author) from England on November 22, 2010:

Hi, Enlydia, well, I couldn't figure out for the life of me what on earth grits were! ha ha but I do know now, I will try and find some more to ask you, thanks so much nell

Nell Rose (author) from England on November 22, 2010:

Hi, kathryn, ha ha I know, but it's lovely! thanks nell

Hi, kirutaye, thanks for reading it, it really is delicious, I made myself one tonight, now I can't move! ha ha cheers nell

Nell Rose (author) from England on November 22, 2010:

Hi, Chris, this brings back memories of England! lol thanks so much nell

Nell Rose (author) from England on November 22, 2010:

Hi, gr82bme, it is yummy! but a bit filling! ha ha thanks nell

Nell Rose (author) from England on November 22, 2010:

Hi, Eiddwen, thanks as always, it is funny, since I started writing these cooking hubs, I seem to be experimenting in the kitchen more! ha ha cheers nell

Christopher Antony Meade from Gillingham Kent. United Kingdom on November 22, 2010:

Lovely, especially with lashings of custard.

Thank you Nell.

Ruby Jean Richert from Southern Illinois on November 22, 2010:

Iv'e never heard of this dish but it sounds good and it looks delicious.Thank you for sharing.


Wayne Brown from Texas on November 22, 2010:

I was so relieved to find that Richard Nixon had nothing to do with this dish. Sounds pretty good even if the name is a bit disconcerting! WB

EnLydia Listener on November 22, 2010:

I have never heard of this dish...sounds interesting...I appreciate you sharing your English dishes with we have any foods that sound unusual to you?

kirutaye from London, UK on November 22, 2010:

Yummy. Just what i need to keep me functioning in this cold season.

kathryn1000 from London on November 22, 2010:

I like it but it's too fatty !!

ChrisLincoln from Orange (or Lemon...) County, California on November 22, 2010:


You managed to evoke cold winter day's and an old favorite, thank you,


gr82bme from USA on November 22, 2010:

Nell, this spotted dick looks great. The custard makes it look even more yummy

Eiddwen from Wales on November 22, 2010:

Hi Nell,

Mmmmm I love Spotted Dick but I must admit that I have never made it so here's my chance. I'll let you know how it turns out.

Carry on with your yummmy recipes.

Thank you so much for sharing.

Take care Nell.

Nell Rose (author) from England on November 22, 2010:

Hi, Dzy, I expect you could, just add butter with the flour, I think, good luck! thanks nell

Hi, charkamman, lol it has got a funny name, but that's typical of our stupid English humour! mind you when it first came out it didn't have the same connotations that it does today, thanks so much nell

Hi, prasetio, you certainly have a long day, it must be quite late there? thank you so much for always being so complimentary, I am glad you like it, and thanks nell

prasetio30 from malang-indonesia on November 22, 2010:

I never knew and taste about Spotted Dick. But from the picture it looks delicious. I love this hub and how you describe this well. My mom will love this hub. Thank you very much. You made me hungry, Nell. Do you have some more for me? I give my Vote up special for you.


charkamman from portugal on November 22, 2010:

I just HAD to look at what this was LOL, and it looks tasteful to me. Will try out for X.mas!

Liz Elias from Oakley, CA on November 22, 2010:

Interesting. Always wondered about what that dish was! Now I know..

Now, do you suppose one could sub in butter or margarine for the suet to keep us vegetarians happy? ;-)

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