Sussex Pond Pudding


Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Serves

    six to eight

Appears in

The three and a half hours is a minimum cooking time: I doubt an extra thirty minutes would do any harm.


  • 75 ml (2¾ fl oz) milk
  • 75 ml (2¾ fl oz) water
  • plain flour, for dusting
  • 225 g (8 oz) self-raising flour
  • 100 g (3½ oz) shredded suet
  • 100 g (3½ oz) butter, plus extra for greasing 100 g (3½ oz) demerara sugar
  • 1 unwaxed lemon


Butter the interior of a 1 1/2 pints / 1.14 litre pudding basin copiously before lightly dusting with a sprinkling of plain flour. Mix the self-raising flour and suet together well. Mix the milk and water together and add them to the flour and suet, then mix to a soft dough. Roll out the dough into a circle on a lightly floured work surface, then cut out a quarter segment, which you will use to form a lid. Ease the remainder of the dough into the prepared pudding basin, taking care to join the two cut ends together well to make an effective seal.

Cut the butter into very small pieces. Mix with the sugar and place half of it on top of the dough in the pudding basin. Prick the lemon all over with a skewer and then nestle it in the butter and sugar before covering it with the remaining butter and sugar.

Roll the reserved quadrant of pastry for the lid into a ball, then roll it out in a circle big enough to cover the pudding. Press it down on top of the butter, lemon and sugar mix, then crimp the edges to the top of the lining pastry to make a good seal. Cover with a circle of greaseproof paper and a double layer of foil and secure in place with string around the rim of the basin.

Place a trivet or heatproof plate on the bottom of a large saucepan then put in the pudding and pour in enough boiling water to come halfway up the basin. Cover with a lid and boil for 3 1/2 hours, topping up the water as necessary. To serve, very carefully turn the pudding out into a deep and commodious dish and take it to the table. Serve with a jug of cream.