Traditional Bread Pudding

Casting my mind back to days like those of the winter of 1963, I was reminded of the importance of avoiding waste and my love of bread puddings made with stale bread. This wartime variation comes closest to the bread pudding in my memory, but is quite different from modern bread puddings. It is paler with less fruit and spice - so don't expect the result to be like the shop-bought varieties. Although I did once find something close to it in the National Trust cafe at Chartwell.


8oz (225g) stale white bread Pinch of mixed spice
2oz (50g) lard 1 tablespoon marmalade
2oz (50g) sugar 4 oz sultanas
½ teaspoon grated nutmeg 1 medium egg
A little milk  


  1. Break the bread into chunks and place in a bowl. Add enough cold water to cover the bread and allow it to soak for 30 mins.
  2. Take handfuls of the soaked bread and squeeze hard to extract as much water as possible and place in a mixing bowl.
  3. Melt the lard over a gentle heat and add to the bread along with all the other ingredients.
  4. Mix well adding enough milk to make a sticky consistency.
  5. Grease a 7 inch (18cm) round cake tin* and turn the mixture into the tin spreading and levelling it.
  6. Bake in a pre-heated oven at 180ºC/350ºF/Gas Mark 4 for 1¼ hours or until firm.
  7. Cool in the tin, then turn out and slice as required.


Bread Pudding