Half Pay Pudding

A very old traditional British recipe, Half Pay Pudding, as its name suggests, was once cheap to make. Serve this very rich hot pudding as a warming winter dessert accompanied by Creme a la Vanille, cream or Hard Sauce.


1 oz. butter

4 oz. flour

4 oz. fresh white breadcrumbs

½ teaspoon salt o teaspoon ground cinnamon

4 oz. shredded suet

2 oz. currants

4 oz. raisins

2 oz. chopped’ candied peel

10 fl. oz. milk

2 tablespoons golden syrup

Using one tablespoon of the butter, generously grease a 2-pint pudding basin and set it aside.

In a medium-sized mixing bowl, com-bine the flour, breadcrumbs, salt and cinnamon. Stir in the suet, currants, raisins and mixed peel. Gradually stir in the milk and syrup. Combine the mixture thoroughly and spoon it into the prepared pudding basin. Set aside.

Cut out a circle of greaseproof or waxed paper about 4 inches wider in diameter than the rim of the pudding basin. Grease the circle of paper generously with the remaining tablespoon of butter. Cut out a circle of aluminium foil the same size as the circle of paper. Place the circle of paper against the circle of foil, buttered side away from the foil, and, holding them firmly together, make a 1-inch pleat across the centre. Place the pleated circle, foil uppermost, over the pudding basin and tie it on securely with string.

Place the basin in a large saucepan and pour in enough boiling water to come two-thirds of the way up the sides of the basin. Cover the pan and place it over low heat. Steam the pudding for 3 hours, adding more boiling water to the pan when necessary.

Remove the pan from the heat. Lift the pudding out of the pan. Remove and discard the paper, foil and string. Run a sharp knife around the edge of the pud-ding to loosen the sides. Place a serving dish, inverted, over the top of the pudding and reverse the two, giving the basin a good shake. The pudding should slide out easily. Serve immediately.