How to steam a pudding

A steamed sticky toffee pudding

lthough steaming a pudding may sound like a daunting challenge, it’s actually quite simple once you know how. A lot of modern pudding basins have made it even easier by including a raised lid. Below I will outline the technique to secure the top of a traditional pudding basin and how to steam puddings in order to make desserts such as sticky toffee pudding.

If you don’t have a lipped pudding basin to hand, you can use any lipped heatproof bowl. To demonstrate this, I have used a stainless steel bowl with a very small lip in the photos for this article.

Step 1

Grab a large lidded saucepan and place an upturned saucer or plate in the bottom (if you have a suitable trivet then use that). Fill the saucepan with enough water to reach halfway up the pudding basin and heat to boiling.

Saucepan with plate in the bottom filled with water
Pudding mixture in bowl

Step 2

Fill the pudding basin with your desired pudding mixture. Make sure you leave enough room for the pudding to rise.

Step 3

Take a large enough piece of greaseproof paper to cover the top of your pudding basin and fold a pleat. Take some aluminium foil and do the same.

Aluminium Foil
Bowl with foil secured on top with string

Step 4

Place both the greaseproof paper followed by the aluminium foil on top of the bowl, and using a piece of string, secure them in place under the bowls rim. Trim the foil and paper to about 1 inch away from the string.

Step 5

Take a double length of string and use it to make a handle for lifting in and out of the pot easily. Tie it to both sides of the string you used to secure the lid.

Metal bowl with foil on top secured with string tied in bow
Bowl with foil top secured with string being lowered into pot by string handle

Step 6

Carefully lower your pudding into the boiling water. Place the lid on your saucepan adjust the heat so that the water is only just boiling. Follow your recipes instructions for cooking length being careful to regularly check the water level is adequate.

Step 7

After your pudding has finished cooking, carefully remove the pudding basin from your pot using the handle you made earlier. Let the pudding stand for a few minutes before removing the foil and paper from the top. Loosen the edges of the pudding with a knife. Place a deep plate upside down on top of your pudding basin and turn both over together. Lift off the pudding basin and enjoy.

Sticky Toffee Pudding being eaten