The Cottage Smallholder

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Recipe for Fiona’s scrummy bread and butter pudding

The final portion of my bread and butter pudding

The final portion of my bread and butter pudding

“Why this is wonderful!” My mother quickly took another mouthful.
“I wasn’t sure that it would be OK. I couldn’t be bothered to look up Delia’s recipe.”
“Well never look it up again, Darling. Just note down how you made this.”

I was thrilled.

Some of my best recipes have been created out of laziness or by mistake. This recipe is one of those. I usually follow Delia’s recipe for luxury bread and butter pudding – replacing the currants and crystallised fruit with sultans and raisins. It always goes down well and is a delicious treat for a traditional British celebration lunch.

I made Delia’s pud for my mum on Mother’s Day. As she enjoyed the pudding so much I decided to give it another whirl on Easter Day. I just couldn’t be bothered to look up Delia’s recipe and, thinking that I had her recipe branded on my brain, I threw this recipe together. Apart from the taste, one of the great things about bread and butter pudding is that it takes under ten minutes to prepare. It is also very inexpensive to make.

Somehow the combination of bread eggs milk and dried fruit transmogrified into a much lighter pudding than Delia’s. I didn’t use cream or lemon zest and used just two eggs rather than three. I also removed the crusts. We put our pudding to bake in the oven as we started to serve the main course.

You can use stale bread for this recipe but I only had fresh and it worked fine.

Fiona’s scrummy bread and butter pudding

You will need a 1 litre/2 pint pie dish and a half litre measuring jug (or bigger)


5-6 slices of thin white sliced bread, crusts cut off and buttered lightly. Thin sliced shop bought bread works best for this dish
A small handful of sultanas
A small handful of raisins
2 large eggs
Approx 400ml of semi skimmed milk
50g of castor sugar


Lightly butter the inside of the pie dish.
Place a layer of buttered bread in the base of the pie dish and scatter over some of the raisins and sultanas. Carry on with layers of bread and dried fruit until the bread slices reach the top of the pie. Don’t scatter dried fruit on the top as these have the tendency to burn. Fill any gaps at the sides of the dish with buttered bread.

In a half litre/pint jug whisk the two eggs, add the castor sugar and beat again finally topping up with the milk. After a quick whisk pour the mixture over the bread and place immediately in the oven at gas mark 4, 350°F (180°C fan) for 30 -40 mins. NB check after 30 mins. The surface should be a light golden brown.

Serve in warm dishes with a jug of double cream for those who crave a little extra indulgence.

  Leave a reply



    I was looking for a genuine Bread and Butter Pudding on the web and came across this one. I did not wish to soak the fruit in brandy. Nor was I prepared to use dozens of eggs plus yolks and pints of cream. What I was looking for was an original Pudding recipe and thankfully I have found one. Light, and delicious and as I remembered it many years ago. Make one according to this recipe, you will not be disappointed.

  2. I was searching for some yummy recipes today when I came across your blog. Your recipe sure fits the description I was looking for. Thanks for sharing this!

  3. Heather Grant

    I remember Bread and Butter pudding – it became quite a fashionable thing among chefs in top restaurants at one point! Simon Hopkinson has a good recipe in his Roast Chicken and Other Stories and his trick is to leave the pudding for 30 minutes before popping into the oven. This allows the bread to soak up the egg mixture. Like Veronica, he also uses some teacakes. Must try this again soon.

  4. Veronica

    Delia generally goes really over the top with cream and butter. Cream is totally unnecessary in a bread & butter pudding — as you say, it’s better with milk.

    My recipe is near-identical to yours. I usually soak my dried fruit in Armagnac or Calvados, and sprinkle a bit of demerara sugar on top of the pudding to make it nice and crispy. For a treat, try it with brioche, teacakes, pannetone, or hot cross buns . It’s one of my specialities — French friends love it!

  5. Jackie Verdier

    My husband is a chef so normally he can knock my socks of in the cooking department. From the reaction you B&BP is getting I may have a chance at last. Thanks

  6. Danny Carey

    Fiona’s concoction really was delicious. Perhaps more like Queen of Puddings than B&BP, which is a step up in class in my books! 🙂

  7. Magic Cochin

    I don’t think I’ve ever used cream in a B&BP, always semi-skimmed. But I’m a bit fussy over the bread and prefer a firmer textured white loaf, or as a treat Hot Cross Buns or Pannettone make a deluxe pud.
    I also warm the milk before whisking it into the egg/sugar combo and then strain it before pouring over the bread.

    Oh yes, and I second Treen’s addition of grated nutmeg.


  8. Lucy @ Smallest Smallholding

    Delia’s recipe always comes up trumps… my other half tried to make his own version a few years ago and basically ended up with baked eggy bread! It was rather rancid, lol!

  9. Sounds yummy – pretty much my recipe except I cannot do without a good sprinkling of nutmeg. Also if you have the time soak the sultanas and raisins in whisky for a while before using 🙂

  10. Not liking dried grapes of any description I prefer to spread my bread and butter with marmalade before adding the eggs and milk. I use Darina Allen’s recipe from the Ballymaloe cook book but it is such a forgiving desert that you really can wing it. The star anise and ginger in my marmalade were perfectly exotic.

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