Steamed Jam Sponge

This will take you back to your schooldays

If you haven’t got a steamer, improvise with a large pan filled with about 5cm of water. Put a sturdy upturned saucer in the bottom of the pan to keep the sponge away from direct heat.


• 2tbsp jam plus a little extra
• 125g butter
• 125g caster sugar
• 2 eggs
• vanilla extract
• 175g self-raising flour
• milk


1) Generously butter a 900ml pudding basin and spoon the jam into the bottom.
2) Cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
3) Break the eggs into a separate bowl and add them to the mixture a little at a time, beating well after each addition.
4) Add a few drops of vanilla extract, then fold in the flour, followed by enough milk to make a soft dropping consistency.
5) Spoon the cake mixture on top of the jam and level out.
6) Lay a large piece of foil on your worksurface and cover with a piece of greaseproof paper. Butter the greaseproof paper, then fold it and foil to make a pleat in the centre. Place this on top of the pudding, buttered side down, and secure with string.
7) Steam the pudding for 11/4 to 11/2 hours. The sponge is ready when it is well risen and springy in the centre.
8) Turn out onto a serving plate and let the jam dribble down the sides of the pudding. Add a little more warmed jam if you like. Serve with custard or single cream.
9) To turn this into a chocolate pudding, replace about a quarter of the flour with cocoa powder.

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