Lemon & Poppy Seed Puddle Pudding

Puddle puddings, or self-saucing puddings – whatever you want to call them – are having something of a revival right now. I've been making them in various flavours and incarnations for a while now, but this version is an absolute classic – and with good reason.

It’s the perfect season for citrus, and this is light and fresh but comforting all at once. It's a cross between a cake and a pudding, with a guaranteed saucy layer, and is far simpler to make than you might think. What more could you ask for in a dessert?

If you enjoy this dish, and would like to try someting similar, do try my Pear, Ginger & Hazelnut version.



Wet ingredients

375ml plant milk – oat, soy or almond

125ml light oil, such as groundnut

1 tbsp lemon juice

1 tsp vanilla extract or bean paste

1 tsp almond extract (optional)

Dry ingredients

350g self-raising flour

125g caster sugar

Pinch of sea salt

½ tsp bicarbonate of soda

Zest of 2 lemons

1 tbsp poppy seeds

For the sauce

350ml boiling water

125g caster sugar

125ml lemon juice

To finish

50g flaked almonds


1. Preheat the oven to 200°C/fan 180°C/Gas 6.

2. Combine the wet ingredients in one bowl, and the dry ingredients in another. Gradually add the wet ingredients to the dry in 3 stages and stir in until just combined, being careful not to overmix the batter.

3. Pour the mixture into an 11x7 inch baking dish, or its equivalent.

4. Make your sauce by adding the boiling water, sugar and lemon juice to a jug, and stirring gently until the sugar has dissolved.

5. Pour the sauce gently over the cake batter – if you like, you can pour the liquid over the back of a spoon to soften the flow. It will seem like too much, plus some cake batter may split, but do persist, as I promise all will be well.

6. Scatter over the flaked almonds – they will float on the top.

7. Bake the pudding in the oven for around 30-40 mins, until the top is lightly golden and it's bubbling around the edges.

8. Remove the pudding from the oven and allow to cool for about 5-10 mins before serving with cream, ice cream or custard – although it's delicious on its own as well.

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