Today I rode a friend’s horse and now the heavens have opened and I am sitting at my desk feeling very warm and cosy, safe in the knowledge that my work is done. There are however 3 dogs at my feet who need to be taken out, though I am thankful that they are even less inclined than me to take on the elements. A perfect jam roly-poly day?
Fillings of treacle, jam, mincemeat or a mixture of golden syrup, breadcrumbs and lemon juice are suggested. For a standard sized roly poly, use the quantity below. For a more delicate roly poly, make two small rolls. This petite pudding allows you to have three slices and to somehow feel a little less guilty!
Traditionally, suet puddings did not contain butter. Its addition does, however, benefits the flavour and gives it a pretty golden colour.
Here is Granny Dot’s original recipe:
Method.- When the dough is mixed, roll it out on a floured board in a long strip. Spread with syrup, cover thickly with breadcrumbs, sprinkle with lemon-juice. Leave an edge all round the paste unspread. Roll up and seal the ends of the roll well together. Tie loosely in a cloth that has been wrung out in boiling water and well floured. Tie the ends with string. Place in a steamer or in a pan of boiling water and boil or steam steadily for 3 hours. Untie the cloth and serve the pudding on a hot dish.
Mrs C.S. Peel, My Own Cookery Book, 1923
170g self raising flour
85g shredded suet or 55g suet and 30g unsalted butter
Pinch of salt
Zest of a lemon (optional)
60ml of full fat milk plus extra if needed
½ a jar of strawberry or raspberry jam
1. Mix the flour, suet, salt, lemon zest and milk together until combined. Do not over mix so that the pudding is kept light in texture.
2. Sprinkle a worktop with flour. Roll out the paste to 34cm x 28cm. You may prefer to make two smaller rolls measuring 14cm x 17cm each which will fit into a steamer more easily. If you make the larger version, it may not fit in the steamer and so you may need to bake it in the oven over a roasting tin of simmering water instead. In this case, preheat the oven to 180˚C/Gas Mark 4.
3. Spread the jam over the top of the suet paste, leaving a 2cm edge around the circumference.
4. Roll the suet paste towards you lightly, so that it has room to expand, being careful not to lose the jam through the edges.
5. Put a sheet of foil on a flat work surface with a sheet of baking paper on top.
6. Seal the foil and baking paper leaving a gap between it and the pudding so that it has room to expand.
7. Fold and scrunch up the edges of the paper and foil so that the roll is airtight.
8. Place the roll(s) in a steamer or in the oven for 1 hour.
If using a steamer, make sure that the pan is topped up with water so that it does not dry out while simmering. If using the oven, remember to place a roasting tin of simmering water below the pudding.
Serve sliced with ice-cream, custard or cream.