Some classic English dishes have peculiar names, and the dessert, Spotted Dick, is one of them. It is mentioned in the Harry Potter books as something Harry and his friends ate at Hogwarts. It is also a popular item on restaurant menus, and is available ready-made in bakeries and grocery stores.
Spotted Dick is a steamed or boiled suet pudding, most often made in the shape of a cylinder; it contains dried fruit – usually currants and/or raisins. It is served sliced with lots of creamy warm custard.
While no one is absolutely sure how Spotted Dick got its strange name, it is thought that the “spotted” part refers to the currants or raisins. However, there are several fairly plausible theories as to the origin of the “dick” part of the name. According to many articles on this subject, the first published recipe for Spotted Dick was around 1847. Language has changed since then, and at that time there were several meanings for the word dick, including policeman, apron, and a type of hard cheese. According to The Straight Dope (a very fun website with answers to imaginative questions), when treacle was added to the hard cheese the name became “treacle dick,” and so when currants were added, it became “spotted dick.” Other theories say that it was simply a shortened version of puddick (a name for pudding). Some people call the dessert Spotted Dog, since the words dog and dough were at one time synonyms for the word dick.
Whatever you choose to call it, this delicious English pudding is moist and flavorful and makes a great dessert. Why not serve it to everyone who attends the newest Harry Potter movie with you or Harry Potter party at your home?
Instant custard powder is available at Asian grocery stores and in some larger grocery stores on the gelatin aisle. Bird’s Custard is also available in some grocery stores and is considered the standard English custard. It can be mixed and microwaved in about 5 minutes.
2/3 cup self-rising flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup shredded suet, (3 ounces)
3/4 cup soft bread crumbs
1/4 cup sugar
1 cup currants
Grated rind of 1 lemon
7 to 9 tablespoons milk, to make a soft dough
- Mix the flour, salt, suet, bread crumbs, sugar, currants, and lemon rind.
- Stir in enough milk to make a soft, but not sticky dough.
- Turn the dough onto a lightly floured pastry cloth or floured surface and form into a 6" long cylinder.
- Spray a piece of parchment or waxed paper with nonstick spray and roll the dough loosely in it. (Make sure there is room for expansion.)
- Fold in the ends and place on a piece of foil.
- Pull the long sides of the foil to the center and fold together to seal; fold up the ends, and place in a steamer.
- Steam for 1 1/2 to 2 hours or until cooked through.
- Slice the hot pudding to serve and cover with custard.
Amount Per Serving
Calories 285 Calories from Fat 121
Percent Total Calories From: Fat 42% Protein 5% Carb. 53%
Nutrient Amount per Serving
Total Fat 13 g
Saturated Fat 7 g
Cholesterol 11 mg
Sodium 151 mg
Total Carbohydrate 37 g
Dietary Fiber 0 g
Sugars 6 g
Protein 4 g
Vitamin A 0% Vitamin C 8% Calcium 0% Iron 5%