Week Five: Puddings


I will never lie to you. It's not a promise I'd normally make, but in a blog context it feels manageable. And so, I will admit... I was kind of terrified of pudding week in the way most people (or characters) seem to be terrified of bread week or patisserie, both of which I am here for. But not puddings. Puddings are just such a British thing and I am not British. Not at all. 0%. I have been to the UK once, and I read a lot of British books and watch a lot of British TV and obviously very much love Bake Off, but like, *not* British. Very *not* British. And puddings... British puddings, that is... they're just not a thing I'm familiar with. Rice pudding? I have like twelve versions I like to make. Butterscotch pudding? Smitten Kitchen has a great recipe. But these are like, cake-y things, not gloppy things. I mean, honestly, I don't bake anything really like this. Pineapple upside down cake is about as close as I've come to self-saucing puddings and that's... well... not that close? So while I have had sticky toffee pudding before in my life... like... twice... maybe thrice? That's... it. That and watching Bake Off was all that I had to prepare me for this very strange journey into puddings, which are both a type of British dessert and what some British people call all desserts? Like that friend I had who called all soda Coke. I don't get it.

In addition, I was running a bit behind schedule on baking due to the quantities of biscuits and some complete and utter nonsense in my actual life, so the baking part of this post may be a bit rushed, and I definitely neglected to take pictures for like... most of this...  I do sincerely apologize. In addition, this post is long, so I am linking the recipes where I have a link and did nothing but follow the recipe rather than reposting them.

I will say, despite my terror, most of what follows came out well.


I had never heard of a parkin so I picked this recipe with good reviews off the internet, with the explained substitutions of whizzing steel cut oats in a food processor, and using a dark molasses. I used store-bought golden syrup and candied ginger because, well, I thought I had enough on my plate without making those elements from scratch. Maybe next time. 

I was perfectly prepared to write this post about how, like Harry, "My parkin was bollocks." How at least I was in good company. Which would lead me into one of my personal favorite little bantery exchanges in the book where Harry says, "I did a perfectly normal swear. You had to make it weird." 

My parkin did not rise properly. And it took like, at least twenty minutes (maybe forty minutes? It's hard to pay attention when it's ten more minutes, five more minutes, three more minutes, okay fine, five more minutes, five more minutes, seriously? five MORE minutes? or whatever it ended up being) longer than the recipe said for a toothpick to come out clean. 

I was ready to tell you how unnecessary and un-worthwhile this parkin recipe is... but... the thing is... even though it took too long and didn't rise properly, and I thought that maybe the edges got a little burnt while the middle was still a little under-baked... the thing is... it is... so... very... almost unbearably... delicious. It's all molasses and ginger and the molasses gives it a dark and sort of a bitter sweet and the ginger gives it a little kick and I am just very much into this weird pudding cake thing that I absolutely do not understand but love.

It's supposed to sit in an airtight container for three days before you eat it for it to get all mellow and perfect, but patience is a virtue which I do not possess and I tried some immediately and it was already delicious. I tried another piece each day and honestly, it was lovely the whole time. I'm not sure three days resting was necessary but it's delicious. I think I maybe didn't blitz my steel cut oatmeal quite enough because it was a bit of a strange texture, or maybe it's meant to have a strange texture, I couldn't tell you because I'd never had nor heard of a parkin prior to Rosaline, but I will reiterate, I may not understand it, but I love it. 

Also, this chapter had some really great quotes that I was appreciating while I listened to the book on tape, so I'm giving the bakes quotes instead of just calling them by character name. It's like, if you remember the movie Waitress she had things like "baby screaming its head off in the middle of the night and ruining my life pie." So, with that explanation behind me, I'll proceed with... 

"Blah blah gender socialisation blah blah history."

Jaffa pudding 

I used this recipe from BBC Good Foods with the minor substitution that I couldn't find any orange milk chocolate, so I used an orange dark chocolate. 

To make self-saucing puddings, I learned from this experience, you make a batter that is sort of cake-like but with what seems like a lot of rising agents. And then, you pour boiling water over it before baking. It's a fascinating and bizarre kind of baking, and the results are a cake like dessert, with a delightfully saucy bottom. It's weird but fun. 

Marianne Wolvercote says that Rosaline's pudding, "Lacks joy for me." To be honest, I too found this pudding kind of joyless, but my friends disagreed. I think it's just along the same lines as me not loving chocolate cake. There was nothing wrong with it but it didn't have me singing from the rooftops. But, if chocolate orange is your thing, it got pretty stellar reviews from the people who like that sort of thing.

Orange lime ice cream

So, when I made the lemon possets from Boyfriend Material (which are amazing, and if you haven't made them yet you absolutely should. They are insanely easy and delicious) one of the first things I thought was I wonder if you could freeze this to make a lemon ice cream?

So, I decided to make my orange ice cream with lime as though I were making the lemon possets, and then once cool, chucked it in my ice cream maker. 

And I am pleased to say, I think it turned out quite nicely.


  • 16 oz heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • Orange, peeled and juiced
  • Lime, peeled and juiced
*This should come out to about 5 tbs of juice. If it's less, get another orange or lime and add more. Mine was just a bit more than 5 tbs so I used all of it and it was nice.


  • Place the cream and sugar in a medium to medium-large pot (it will boil up, so significantly larger than the ingredients going into it) over medium-high heat, and stir until the sugar dissolves. 
  • Let the mixture come to a boil and boil for 3 minutes, stirring constantly. This is important, or it will not have the lovely smooth texture it should.
  • When the timer goes, add in the citrus peels to the boiling mixture then remove from heat and stir in the juices. Let sit for 10 minutes. 
  • After 10 minutes, stir again, remove peel, and pour into a container to refrigerate until completely cold
  • Freeze in ice cream machine according to machine directions

"A drink isn't a bribe... It's a courtesy."

Once again, feelings for Alain aside, his was the recipe I was most excited for. I love a boozy dessert. I love caramel. And... it just sounded interesting.

Whiskey, caramel, and banana pudding served with a glass of whisky on the side.

I used this recipe here. I loved it. I followed it with the only change being cane sugar rather than golden caster sugar because I didn't have that. It was lovely. That's really all I have to say about it. The cake part was cakey, the whiskey caramel sauce was a lovely whiskey caramel sauce.

Oh, one other thing. I read the instructions wrong and put on my banana slices before the boiling water but it was supposed to be after... so my pudding looked prettier prior to baking... but it tasted nice after and that's what *truly* matters, right?

Cream Cheese Ice Cream

There was a recipe I wanted to use for this but it used strange quantities of ingredients and would have left me with half a brick of cream cheese so I messed around a bit and made this. 

Like the judges, and like myself in biscuit week, Alain's bake remains my favorite of the main characters' bakes... though I love Nora's pudding best, and also love Anvita's ice cream... but we'll get to them in a bit.


  • 8 oz cream cheese
  • 1 pt half and half
  • 3 egg yolks, whisked until uniform
  • 1/2 c sugar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract (as always, I just splashed some in, measurements be damned)
  • Pinch of kosher salt


  • Combine half and half, 1/2 c sugar, and salt in a double boiler, if you're risk-averse, or a pot if you're in a rush, over medium-low heat. Stir until the sugar has dissolved and keep cooking until steam rises. 
  • Take the pot off the heat and add a splash of the dairy mixture into the egg yolks. Continue to add the dairy mixture, whisking in a little at a time, until you've added about half. Then return the egg/dairy mixture to the rest of the dairy mixture in the double boiler (or pot) and cook over low heat until it is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. (Hold the spoon horizontally and run a finger through the custard. If the trail stays separated, it is ready to cool).
  • Strain the custard into a bowl, mix in the cream cheese and vanilla extract
  • Chill for several hours, preferably overnight. Then make in your ice cream maker according to its instructions.

"Turns out bisexuals ain't like quinoa. You get 'em round my way too."

Chocolate pudding

This recipe, from the same blog as Alain's, was my attempt at a chocolate. The self-saucing-ness came out perfectly but the chocolate cakier part of the pudding was.... not particularly chocolatey or impressive.

Harry's pudding is described as "rather basic." I'd say this is accurate. It's not bad. It's nice. But it's not exciting. His ice cream/pudding combo got that description. I will not extend that description to this recipe for vanilla ice cream which is, quite frankly, phenomenal. 

Vanilla ice cream

This is from the Van Leeuwen Ice Cream Cookbook. I am obsessed with their ice cream, and have been since I lived in Brooklyn and was a loyal devotee of the food truck and storefront (the Earl Grey Ice Cream is to *die* for). I f you have high cholesterol these ice creams will probably kill you. Try not to stop breathing when you see the quantity of egg yolks in these recipes, but I swear to you... it is worth it. This is a truly decadent vanilla ice cream. Laurence Dalziel would love it, although he'd probably also start thinking about statistics of heart attacks or something like that (yes, yes, I know I said I'd do For Real another day, and I will! But his favorite ice cream is vanilla and as I apparently have the same sense of humor as a fictional nineteen year old boy, it amuses me). 

  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tbs sugar
  • 1 vanilla bean cut in half and split lengthwise, seeds scraped out
  • 1/4 tsp (1g) kosher salt
  • 8 large egg yolks
  • Pour the cream and milk into a double boiler or a heatproof bowl set over a saucepan of gently simmering water (the bottom of the bowl should not touch the water). 
  • Whisk in ½ cup (100 grams) of the sugar, the vanilla seeds and pod, and the salt and stir until the sugar and salt have dissolved. 
  • Warm the mixture until you see steam rising from the top. 
  • Remove from the heat, cover, and let the mixture steep for 15 minutes. Remove the vanilla bean pod.
  • Prepare an ice bath in a large bowl and set another bowl over it. Set aside. 
  • In a medium bowl, with a kitchen towel underneath it to prevent slipping, whisk together the egg yolks with the remaining 2 tablespoons (25 grams) sugar until uniform. 
  • While whisking, add a splash of the hot dairy mixture to the yolks. Continue to add the dairy mixture, whisking it in bit by bit, until you’ve added about half. 
  • Add the yolk mixture to the remaining dairy mixture in the double boiler. Set the heat under the double boiler to medium and cook the custard, stirring continuously with a wooden spoon. Reduce the heat to medium-low as necessary, until steam begins to rise from the surface and the custard thickens enough to coat the back of the spoon. (Hold the spoon horizontally and run your finger through the custard. If the trail left by your finger stays separated, the custard is ready to be cooled.)
  • Strain the custard into the bowl sitting over the prepared ice bath and stir for 3 to 5 minutes, or until the custard has cooled. Transfer the custard to a quart-size container, cover, and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or, preferably, overnight. 
  • Pour the chilled custard into an ice cream maker and freeze according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Place the container in which you refrigerated the custard in the freezer so you can use it to store the finished ice cream. Churn the ice cream until the texture resembles “soft serve.” Transfer the ice cream to the chilled storage container and freeze until hardened to your desired consistency. Alternatively, you can serve it immediately—it will be the consistency of gelato. 
  • The ice cream will keep, frozen, for up to 7 days.

"We're rooting for Anvita, she's excellent and sexy."

Coconut and lime pudding 

I once again used the same blog for Anvita's recipe, but this one did not self-sauce. The flavor was lovely but it was supposed to separate into cakieness and curd, and it was just sort of a weirdly textured dense mess. I have no idea why.

Margarita ice-cream

I used this one, exactly as is so follow the link. I thought it was lovely, but one of my friends felt it overpowered the pudding. I also liked that this was a no-churn recipe, because waiting for my ice cream maker bowl to re-freeze over and over again was a bit trying on my patience. Also, it's by Nigella Lawson, and, as those of you that have read ahead know, Anvita talks about how Harry could be the male Nigella Lawson and I love that bit, so I was thrilled to use a Nigella recipe.

And finally...

The Playboy Prince's Secret Baby

Nora didn't speak at all in this chapter so I skipped ahead and stole a title from one of the books she reads, because I enjoy her romance reading. 

I also cheated a little on this one. It was the last of the puddings I made and I decided to go with a recipe from The Great British Bake Off: How to Turn Everyday Bakes into Showstoppers cookbook, which made individual sticky toffee puddings... and they're not self-saucing. I made the sauce separately. I'M SORRY! I know it doesn't technically fit the brief this way but I had the book right there and I thought it was more reliable than a random internet recipe for my friends who would be actually eating these puddings as, as previously stated, I know nothing about making British puddings. 

Sticky toffee pudding 

Ingredients for the pudding:

  • 160g pitted, chopped Medjool dates
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 300ml boiling water
  • 175g unsalted butter, softened
  • 175g dark brown sugar
  • 1 large egg, room temperature, beaten
  • 175g self-rising flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder

Ingredients for the sauce:

  • 100g unsalted butter
  • 100g dark brown sugar
  • 1 tbs dark rum
  • 100m heavy cream


  • Preheat the oven to 350F and grease 8 ramekins, or other similar containers- I used the pan my friend let me borrow to make savarin and two extra ramekins, and place them all on a baking sheet.
  • Put chopped dates and baking soda in a heatproof bowl and cover with boiling water. Stir well and let sit until lukewarm- about 20 minutes
  • Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Gradually add the egg, beating well after each addition. 
  • Sift flour with baking powder and gently fold into the mixture in three batches using a large metal spoon. 
  • Stir in the dates and their liquid to make a thick batter-like mixture.
  • Spoon into prepared ramekins. They should be 2/3 full (no more) to allow space to rise. 
  • Bake for 20 minutes, until firm when pressed in the center.
  • Meanwhile, melt butter, sugar, and rum over low heat then bring to a boil. 
  • Remove from heat and whisk in the cream. 
  • Leave puddings to cool on a wire rack for 5 minutes, then carefully turn out onto serving plates. Serve hot with sauce.

Clotted cream ice cream

Now, I know I said that looking at the ingredient list for the Van Leeuwen ice cream alone might give you a heart attack, but even that doesn't feel as heart-stoppingly decadent as ice cream made from clotted cream. This was a bit of an experiment. I think it was honestly sweeter than it needed to be, especially given how sweet the puddings are. 


  • 12 oz (2 little 6 oz jars) clotted cream (I read about making your own but like the parkin, I just couldn't when I had so many things to make)
  • 1/2 c heavy cream
  • 1/4 c sugar
  • pinch of salt


  • Warm the creams and sugar until the sugar dissolves. 
  • Chill completely. Freeze in ice cream maker according to instructions.

I chose not to make Josie's failed medieval molten payne foundewe.`    

Which leads us into... patisserie week. Which, since I promised not to lie, I'll tell you I've already done all the bakes for but have barely started to write up yet. See you there!


  1. I LOVE sticky toffee pudding, so I'm glad you included it! (Despite its non-self-saucing nature.)

    1. <3 I also love sticky toffee pudding, and that recipe is *delicious* and not difficult.


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