Spotted Dick: Definitely a Tasty British Pudding

Heinz spotted dick sponge pudding in a can

Other than Uranus, there’s only one other object in the universe that creates such a bout of name-based childish sniggering. And it’s this popular pudding.

What’s Spotted Dick?

It’s a sponge pudding that features fruit and definitely not any male body parts. Indeed, the “dick” bit is an English dialectical term for “dough”.

Alexis Benoit Soyer (1810-1858) mentions it for the first time in history in the The modern Housewife or ménagère (1940). Soyer became a famous chef in England and was one of the top names during the Victorian era.

These days, of course, it’d be called “spotted pudding” or “spotted dessert”. And we’re sure “dick” didn’t have any negative connotations 200 years ago.

So, yes. It’s a tasty pudding. It definitely isn’t something else your immature brain is suggesting it may be. Here’s an image from Daring Gourmet.

A spotted dick sponge pudding

Looks nice, eh? Pretty. Like your average tasty pudding. Your average tasty pudding with a name seemingly invented by some bored teenage boys.

As you already know, this thing is available in a can. But you can also put some effort in a bake the thing yourself. Yeah?

How to Make Spotted Dick

Gorgeous hunky man bloke again here with Jamie Oliver. The ingredients you’ll need for spotted dick include:

250 grams of self-raising flour

A small amount of salt

125 grams of shredded suet (that’s raw beef mutton—you can use vegetable shortening to get around that)

180 grams of currants

80 grams of caster sugar

Finely grated zest of one lemon

Finely grated zest of one small orange

150 milimetres of whole milk

You can also hurl custard all over the finished thing. Or Bovril and Marmite if that takes your insane fancy.

Why Does Spotted Dick Have Such an Offensive Name?

It’s history, we told you, it’s due to what Victorians gave a slang name for “dough”. Not every Tom, Dick, and Harry went into making this thing.

Nor was it meant to be vulgar and/or a bit weird. It’s just a name that didn’t age at all well.

Examples of dodgy pudding names in our era would include the following:

  • Poopy pants pudding.
  • The bastard banana bread.
  • Dickhead dessert.
  • Fuddy-duddy fudge.
  • Craptastic cake.
  • Damn tiramisu.
  • Bellend brûlée.
  • Silly sausage ice cream.
  • Knickerbocker glory.
  • Baked lemon meringue arse.

However, spotted dick remains the worst offender. We should imagine it’s banned in many nations with a disgraceful name like that!


  1. Yuck! Suet???
    Uch! Unfortunately, this is NOT banned in Canada.
    My father’s name is Dick, and he lived up to it his entire life!
    Definitely a word that did not fare the wrath of time well.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yeah there’s a vegetarian option for the suet.

      There should be more human names to suit difficult temperaments. Dick, Annoyance, Lunatic, Psycho etc. Great names, don’t you reckon!?


Dispense with some gibberish!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.