Spotted dick and custard

Steaming hot and deeply comforting, this classic dessert brings cheer in deepest winter
By James Martin
Spotted dick and custard
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 4-6
  • Cook Time:
  • Prep Time: 25 minutes
  • Effort: medium



  • 50 g butter
  • 350 g plain flour
  • 3 tsp baking powder
  • 140 g shredded suet
  • 85 g caster sugar
  • 115 g currants
  • finely grated zest and juice of 2 lemons
  • 75 ml milk
  • 75 ml whipping cream
  • custard or clotted cream, to serve


1. Soften half the butter and use to grease a 1.4 litre pudding basin.

2. Combine the flour, baking powder, suet, sugar and currants in a large bowl, mixing well.

3. Melt the remaining butter and stir into the flour mixture.

4. Stir in the lemon juice and zest.

5. Combine the milk and cream in a small jug. Slowly stir enough into the mixture to bring it to a dropping consistency.

6. Pour the mixture into the pudding basin. Cover with a double layer of greaseproof paper (make a pleat in the middle to allow for expansion), tied in place with string.

7. Place the basin in a steamer basket set over boiling water. Cover and steam for about 1 - 1 1/2 hours until cooked. Check the water level now and again to make sure it doesn't burn dry.

8. Serve with custard or, if you're feeling wicked, a big dollop of clotted cream.

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