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Baker's Dozen: A Batch of Sweet Links

Let me teach you how to draw pastries. (Craftsy)

Win a pack of my "Ice cream love" notecards! (CakeSpy's Facebook page)

10 fun facts about the Japanese sweet tooth. (University of Kansas)

How to draw from memory. Fun and useful! (CakeSpy for Craftsy)

Funfetti cream pie. This girl knows me so well. (The Domestic Rebel)

Strawberry mousse. Looks like the perfect spring dessert! (Pumpkin 'n Spice)

A Dubai store unveils the world's most expensive dessert. Spoiler: I won't be buying it any time soon. (Inquirer.net)

Everybody must get sconed: how to make maple walnut scones. (CakeSpy for Craftsy)

Orange sunshine cake. Seriously, one of the prettiest things I've seen. (Baked Bree)

Butterscotch pudding cookies. YES YES YES. (Bake.Frost.Repeat)

How to draw block letters. (CakeSpy for Craftsy)

In case you have any left (yeah right): how to use up your leftover Cadbury Creme Eggs. (Yahoo AU)

Candied vanilla sugar wafers. Awesome. (In Good Flavor)

Salted caramel beer cake with pears. Interesting! (Honest Cooking)

How to paint bunnies. You need this tutorial. By my amazing mom. (Margie Moore)

Book of the week: Cookie Love. You can get a glimpse of the book from the excerpt I posted, a recipe for Fleur de Sel shortbread with halvah. Like, whoa. The recipes only get better as you go through the book! It's a victory from Mindy Segal, who also owns Chicago foodie landmark Hot Chocolate.


Fleur de Sel Shortbread with Vanilla Halvah

Cookie Love by Mindy Segal

You guys. I was super excited to receive a review copy of Mindy Segal's new book, Cookie Love. Why?

Well, a few reasons. 

For one, she's the proprietress of Chicago foodie landmark Hot Chocolate. Even if you've never been there, if you go to their website, the establishment is explained thusly: "Restaurant. Dessert Bar. Pastries." You should already be halfway in love. If you ever go, I promise you'll be the rest of the way in love.

Second, the recipes look AWESOME. You could seriously just buy this book and look at the pictures for the rest of your life, it would be worth the investment just for that.

But your life would be even better still if you made these cookies: Fleur de Sel Shortbread with Vanilla Halvah. 

Discover them here with this awesome excerpt recipe. 

A note from Mindy: 

I AM ALWAYS ON a quest to find more ways to use halvah in desserts. Coffee, chocolate, and cocoa nibs are my usual pairings with the Middle Eastern sesame confection, but one day I shifted gears in favor of vanilla and fleur de sel. It worked—halvah anchored the vanilla-flecked frosting, for a sweet, salty, nutty result. To finish the cookies, I dip them partially in dark milk chocolate and then place a shaving of halvah on top. The frosting is seasoned well to balance its sweetness, but because the cookies themselves carry a noticeable salt level, you may prefer to add less. 

Fleur de Sel Shortbread with Vanilla Halvah

makes approximately 28 sandwich cookies

11⁄2 cups plus 2 tablespoons (13 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature 11⁄4 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
2 extra-large egg yolks, at room temperature
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons sea salt flakes

8 ounces plain or vanilla halvah, cubed
2 ounces white chocolate, melted
11⁄4 cups (10 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature 1 cup confectioners’ sugar, sifted
1⁄2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1⁄2 teaspoon kosher salt
1⁄2 teaspoon sea salt flakes, or to taste

Piece of plain or vanilla halvah, for garnish 8 ounces milk chocolate, melted

Step #1: Make the Shortbread
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix the butter on medium speed for 5 to 10 seconds. Add the sugar and mix on low speed to incorporate. Increase the speed to medium and cream the butter mixture until it is aerated and looks like frosting, 3 to 4 minutes. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula to bring the batter together.

Put the yolks in a small cup or bowl and add the vanilla. In a bowl, whisk together the flour and salt.

On medium speed, add the yolks, one at a time, and mix until the batter resembles cottage cheese, approximately 5 seconds for each yolk. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula to bring the batter together. Mix on medium speed for 20 to 30 seconds to make nearly homogeneous.

To cut out the cookies, you will need a rectangular cutter approximately 13⁄4 by 21⁄2 inches. To pipe the frosting, you will need the Ateco tip #32. 

Cookie Love by Mindy Segal page1image22832

Add the flour mixture all at once and mix on low speed until the dough just comes together but still looks shaggy, approxi- mately 30 seconds. Do not overmix. Remove the bowl from the stand mixer. With a plastic bench scraper, bring the dough completely together by hand.

Stretch two sheets of plastic wrap on a work surface. Divide the dough in half and place each half on a piece of the plastic wrap. Pat each half into a rectangle, wrap tightly, and refrigerate until chilled throughout, at least 2 hours or preferably overnight.

Let the dough halves sit at room tempera- ture until the dough has warmed up some but is still cool to the touch, 15 to 20 minutes.

Put a sheet of parchment paper the same dimensions as a half sheet (13 by 18-inch) pan on the work surface and dust lightly with flour. Put one dough half on top.

Using a rolling pin, roll the dough half into a rectangle approximately 11 by 13 inches and 1⁄4 inch thick or slightly under. If the edges become uneven, push a bench scraper against the dough to straighten out the sides. To keep the dough from sticking to the parchment paper, dust the top with flour, cover with another piece of parchment paper, and, sandwiching the dough between both sheets of parch- ment paper, flip the dough and paper over. Peel off the top layer of parchment paper and continue to roll. Any time the dough starts to stick, repeat the sand- wiching and flipping step with the parchment paper.

Ease the dough and parchment paper onto a half sheet pan. Repeat with the remaining dough half and stack it on top. Cover with a piece of parchment paper and refrigerate the layers until firm, at least 30 minutes.

Heat the oven to 350°F. Line a couple of half sheet pans with parchment paper.
Let the dough sit at room temperature for up to 10 minutes. Invert the dough onto a work surface and peel off the top sheet of parchment paper. Roll a dough docker over the dough or pierce it numerous times with a fork. Using a 1 3⁄4 by 2 1⁄2-inch rectangular cutter, punch out the cookies. Reroll the dough trimmings, chill, and cut out more cookies.

Put the shortbread on the prepared sheet pans, evenly spacing up to 16 cookies per pan.

Bake one pan at a time for 10 minutes. Rotate the pan and bake until the cookies feel firm and hold their shape when touched, 3 to 5 minutes more. Let the cookies cool completely on the sheet pans. Repeat with the remaining pan.

Step #2: Frost the Cookies
Blend the halvah in a food processor until fairly smooth. Drizzle in the white chocolate and blend until incorporated. The halvah will turn into a thick paste.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix the butter briefly on medium speed for
5 to 10 seconds. Add the sugar and beat until the butter mixture is aerated and pale in color, 3 to 4 minutes. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula to bring the frosting together. Briefly mix in the vanilla and salts until incorporated, approximately 1 minute. Add the halvah paste and mix until smooth, with a little texture left from the halvah.

Fit a pastry bag with the Ateco tip #32 and fill with the frosting.
Make pairs of similar-size cookies. Turn half of the cookies over. Leaving an 1⁄8-inch border, pipe rows of dots 
onto the cookies. The frosting should be approximately as thick as the cookie. Top each frosted cookie with a second cookie and press lightly to adhere.

Step #3: Finish the Cookies
Freeze the piece of halvah until chilled, 30 minutes.

Line two half sheet pans with parchment paper. Dip a quarter of the long side of each sandwich cookie into the milk chocolate, shake off the excess, and place on the prepared pans. Using a vegetable peeler, shave
a piece or two of halvah and place onto the chocolate- dipped part of each cookie. Refrigerate until the chocolate is firm, approximately 1 hour.

The cookies can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 1 week. 


Buy the book here: Cookie Love


CakeSpy for Craftsy: Delicious Maple Walnut Scones Recipe

In general, I don't like scones. Because most of them are like cardboard with icing, especially at commercial coffee shops.

But homemade is a different thing entirely. Homemade scones are biscuit-y, crumbly, and nice and hefty and rich. And this recipe, for maple walnut scones with maple glaze (made using the good stuff, from Vermont!), is a winner.

They're easy to make and will make your mouth happy, so what are you waiting for?

Find the recipe here. 


Wedding Cake Flavor Infographic


Za'atar Bread Recipe Inspired by Bedouin Tent in Brooklyn

I know you typically come to this site for sweets, but I need to tell you something. Za'atar bread is where it's at, man.

If you've never heard of za'atar spice, let me briefly explain.

Za’atar is a spice mix which is in frequent rotation in Middle Eastern cooking. It can be used as a flavoring ingredient in a recipe or treated as a condiment. In this za’atar bread recipe, it’s the key ingredient.

Typically, the flavorful mix includes thyme, sesame seeds, and sumac, but it’s one of those things that everyone mixes just a little differently. Some mixes may include oregano or marjoram; some might even call for lemon zest. There isn’t necessarily a right or wrong; it’s something that if you decide to make yourself, you can play with the ratio of ingredients to find the precise mix that works for you.

This recipe is based on a type of bread served at Bedouin Tent, the Middle Eastern restaurant in Brooklyn I worked at during college. If I do say so myself, I did a pretty good job.

Recipe here. 


Baker's Dozen: A Batch of Sweet Links

First, let's Easter. You do it like this:

Now, on to other links. 


In my opinion, the world's best vegan buttercream. (Craftsy)

If you live by the Jersey Shore...take an art class with my amazing mom! (Art Tank Asbury Park)

I want my bike to be like this. (Distractify) - thank you Stephany!

LOVE these color-block sugar cookies. So pretty! (Love and Olive Oil)

This book announcement video is just too cute. (Sarah Coates) - thanks Jameson for the tip!

Have you heard? I'm an "ultimate cake blogger". (Craftsy)

I want a donut collar. (Craft Magazine) - thanks Rosalie for the tip!

7 ways to use (and misuse) Cadbury Creme Eggs. (Food and Wine)

What happened at Ben & Jerry's? Find out here. (On Second Scoop)


Homemade Ruby Gem Candy a la Erin Bakes

Homemade candy gems

Your snacks should be just as fancy as you are. And you're fancy, I can just tell.

While diamonds are dandy, rubies make a more delightful inspiration for candy. These bright red candy gems look super fancy, but don't require a trip to Tiffany or Cartier to obtain. All you need is a candy mold, a little time, and hopefully some aggression (don't worry, I'll explain). 

Homemade candy gems

This easy and fun craft/snack is inspired by Erin Gardner, a cake decorator extraordinare who led me through the process on her awesome blog, Erin Bakes.

Homemade candy gems

Candy gems

Adapted from Erin Bakes

  • red translucent hard candies (I used Brach's cinnamon candies, but you could use jolly ranchers or life savers)
  • Small zip-top bags
  • Rolling pin
  • a heatproof candy mold with gem-like vessels


  1. Position a rack in the middle position of your oven. Preheat the oven to 275 degrees F.
  2. Unwrap a bunch of candies and place them in your sturdy bag.
  3. Using the rolling pin, take out your aggression (remember? You need it now!) on the poor candy that never did anything to you. Go ahead, show it who's boss. 
  4. Since I used a silicone mold, I didn't grease the vessels, but Erin Bakes suggests that if you use a more firm candy mold, you should "Spray pan spray onto a paper towel and use the greased towel to wipe the cavity of your gem mold. This provides enough of a barrier to pop the gem out later, but not so much grease that it makes your gems cloudy."
  5. Fill the molds with your candy bits. 
  6. Gently place the filled molds on top of a cookie sheet, then pop it in the oven. Heat for as little as 5 minutes, or as much as 15 minutes, depending on the sturdiness of the candy you use (start checking after 5 minutes). It will progress from droopy candy to totally melty. Once totally melty, remove the pan from the oven. Erin advises, "If the gem is not as full as you’d like, sprinkle in a little more candy and place the tray back into the oven for another minute or so. Just long enough for the additional candy to melt."
  7. Let the molds cool for several minutes before handling the molds. About 10-20 minutes after they've been removed, your candies will be ready to remove. I simply inverted the mold and kind of squeezed them out. 

Ruby gem candy

You've got yourself a glamorous little snack here! 


CakeSpy's Recent Craftsy Posts

Homemade Samoas. You know, the Girl Scout cookies.

Homemade Thin Mints. Also the Girl Scout cookies.

Homemade NYC style crumb cake. THE BEST.

Tips for painting skin tones in acrylic.

How to use a boning knife. Actually interesting, I promise.

Za'atar bread. Your new favorite. Trust me.

Mixed media: combining watercolor and acrylic

What is permanent masking fluid and how do you use it?

How to make burgers without a grill.

Delicous and hearty veggie stew.

EASY edible chocolate garnishes. From a while back but worth your time.

How to use transfer paper to create awesome art. 

Paleo cookies recipe. They're really and truly delicious. 


Sweetapolita Dreams

Sweetapolita bakebook

A cupcake, robot, bunny, and unicorn all agree: you should buy The Sweetapolita Bakebook: 75 Fanciful Cakes, Cookies & More to Make & Decorate.

Let me explain.

A few weeks ago, a package arrived in the mail. It was addressed as follows: "to Cuppie the cupcake and his friends robot, bunny, and unicorn, and CakeSpy is under no circumstances allowed to peek".

Ouch, that hurt. Usually the review copies come to me! But I let the cupcake and his friends have the package, and I could see from across the room the book looked like this.

Why would they keep it from me? It looked like my dream book. 

A couple of weeks later, I was contacted by the publishing PR company, asking if I wanted to be part of the author, Rosie Alyea's, blog hop, which includes tons of awesome prizes. 

Hey! What about the strange address on the package?

Turns out, Cuppie had done that so he could have the book all to himself (and, you know, to share with his illustrated buddies).

Happily, at this point, Cuppie and friends shared, indicating that the book had reached the highest possible level of approval in the illustrated world:

So I decided that for my entry in the blog hop, instead of making a recipe, I would ask all of the characters what they liked best from the book. 

What CakeSpy characters like best from the Sweetapolita Bakebook:


Sweetapolita bakebook

Cuppie, who decided to channel Rosie with his apron (let's just not go into the cross dressing aspect of this, OK?), simply loves the rainbow and sprinkle cake, which is composed of multicolored cake layers frosted with blue buttercream and completely smothered in sprinkles.

Cuppie's pick:



Sweetapolita bakebook

Robot, who you would think would like the robot pop rocks truffles best, did indeed enjoy those--but his first recipe to bake from the book will definitely be the pink cherry party cupcakes.

Robot's picks:


Sweetapolita bakebook

Bunny loves the Coney Island Cheesecake. It's sort of like Funfetti plus a rainbow meet cheesecake. How could you not love it?

Bunny's pick:


Sweetapolita bakebook

You really shouldn't be surprised that Sprinkle the unicorn likes the sky cake on page . Especially the topper, which features a rainbow that reminds Sprinkle of the place he was born. 

Sprinkle the unicorn's pick:

This gives you a glimpse of the book, but by no means the full scale. You simply must buy it! 

Buy the book here.

Which recipe are you most excited about?


The Ultimate Guide to Pudding

What is pudding? Seriously. I'm not joking.


Whether or not you woke up this morning thinking you'd get an extreme pudding education (EPE), well, you're gonna get it. I'm not even going to waste time: let's get right into it.

What is Pudding?

The word pudding is believed to come from the French boudin, originally from the Latin botellus, meaning "small sausage", referring to encased meats used in Medieval European puddings

When it comes to defining what pudding is, it can be tricky because depending on where you grew up, the first image that comes to mind might be either a creamy variety served in a packet with a foil top, or it might be something baked in a pan. Or, it might be a catchall term for a variety of desserts.

I guess I should address what pudding is not: custard or mousse. But why not?

Pudding, custard, and mousse: what's the dif? 

If you want a full analysis, check out my post on the subject; meantime, I will summarize here.

In America, at least, the key difference is egg--or lack thereof. Pudding does not have to have egg, although it sometimes does. 

Custard, on the other hand, depends on egg. According to Professional Baking, custard is “a liquid thickened or set by the coagulation of egg protein.” 

As Chow.com aptly put it, 

It's not quite as simple as saying, “If it has eggs it’s custard; if it has starch it’s pudding.”Professional Baking points out that there is an overlap: Cream puddings, it says, use a custard base but are thickened with starch. Pastry cream (the stuff you find in an éclair) is a cream pudding—a custard-pudding hybrid.

Mousse is also differentiated by its egg content--typically egg whites--and the fact that it's whipped to form a frothy, light mixture. However, bets can be off because mousse is sometimes made with cream and no egg whites. 

So, to summarize:

  • Pudding is usually thickened with starch.
  • Custard is usually thickened with egg.
  • Mousse is whipped, with either egg whites or cream.

But ultimately, there are blurred lines. Some puddings are vigorously mixed in a way that could be considered "whipped"; other puddings contain egg. So, it's fair that some recipes could be on the fence or straddle different creamy dessert worlds. 

Pudding is interesting too because it has been assigned to far more than say, chocolate pudding. It can be used to define dishes as widely varied as banana nilla wafer pudding, steamed, cake-like figgy pudding, or even savory Yorkshire pudding. So, to make it a little easier on you, I've taken it upon myself to create three distinct types of pudding:

The three primary types of pudding (according to me)

Very scientific, believe me.

Creamy / boiled


I say "creamy" rather than "boiled" first, because the creamy variety in my mind covers a variety of puddings, from an old fashioned chocolate pudding made on the stovetop to the instant pudding that you make in a jell-o style packet. 

Here are just a few examples of creamy puddings. 

  • Butterscotch
  • Chocolate
  • Pistachio
  • Rice 
  • Tapioca
  • Vanilla  

Baked or steamed puddings

White Chocolate Bread Pudding

Baked puddings are any sort that you'd put in the oven. I'm pputting "steamd" in the same category because most steamed puddings are made in the oven these days, in a water bath. This could be a banana nilla wafer type pudding, or even a bread pudding. 

Here are some of the types of baked puddings. 

  • Bread pudding
  • Elvis' favorite banana pudding
  • Figgy pudding
  • Rice pudding * (yep - it can be boiled or baked!) 


Photo via Flickr member zoyachubby

Savory puddings can be either a boiled or baked variety, but they're made with savory foods. One notable example is Yorkshire pudding, which is made from mixing roast beef drippings with flour and spices and baking it up into a firm form. It really does taste a whole lot better than it sounds. Steamed pies consisting of a filling completely enclosed by suet pastry are also known as puddings.

Here are some of the types of savory puddings.

  • Black pudding 
  • White pudding
  • Creamed corn
  • Haggis

Not to confuse things, but "pudding" in some parts of the world can be used as a general term for dessert. For instance, I might say "goodies" referring to a number of different sweet foodstuffs in the USA; in the UK, "pudding" could refer to any number of sweet treats served after mealtime. 

All the puddings in the world

I've taken some time to put together a guide to every type of pudding I could find, from the USA and far beyond. If I've missed something, please feel free to chime in! 


Photo via Flickr member bergie

Type: Boiled

What it is: Ashura is a holiday in Turkey signifying the day Noah's ark reached dry land. The festivities, which focus on community, last for a month. Also known as "Noah's Pudding", ashure is symbolic of the first meal Noah enjoyed after leaving the ark. It includes grains, fruits, and nuts. Recipe here.


Type: Boiled

What it is: A Middle Eastern dish which translates, roughly, to "boiled flour pudding". Recipe here. 

Banana pudding

Type: Boiled, steamed, or baked

What it is: A dessert with a vanilla mixture scented with banana slices, often layered with nilla wafers. It's topped with whipped cream or a baked meringue mixture sometimes. Elvis's favorite. Recipe here

Bánh chuối

Type: Baked/fried

What it is: A banana bread pudding (banana and bread, not banana bread) from Vietnam. Recipe here.


Photo via Flickr member the fernandeses

Type: Steamed / baked

What it is: A Goan specialty made with coconut milk. But here's the thing: it has many layers. Officially magic! Recipe here

Black pudding

Type: Savory

What it is: A classic addition to the full breakfast, this is a sausage made from pig blood from the UK


Type: Boiled, creamy

What it is: One of the standards, invented in France (of course). Cream or milk, sugar, and thickening agent. Recipe here.

Black rice pudding

Type: Creamy, boiled

What it is: Black pudding is served with a rich coconut cream and bananas. I had it often in Bali. Recipe here.

Box pudding

Type: Creamy, boiled (sometimes)

What it is: A powdered mix to which you simply add milk and it becomes pudding. There are slow cook varieties (combine mix with milk, and heat on the stovetop) or instant varieties (combine milk and pudding mix, and stir; it magically thickens). Boxed pudding mix has uses beyond making pudding, though. I can be employed to make very moist cakes, or even to make the middle layer of Nanaimo bars. 

Bread and butter pudding

Photo via Flickr member avlxyz

Type: Baked

What it is: A classic UK treat. Buttered bread (or in the case of the fancied-up version above, pannettone) is layered with raisins into a dish, and then a cream and egg mixture is poured on top. It's baked up and then served. Recipe here

Bread pudding

Cranberry sauce bread pudding

Type: Creamy, baked / steamed

What it is: A very clever way to use up stale bread. Basically it involves soaking the bread in some sort of cream mixture; sometimes it's baked, sometimes not. Recipe here

Brown betty

Type: Baked / steamed

What it is: A mixture of breadcrumbs, apples, and plenty of sugar. It's said to date to Colonial times, and it tastes better than its humble ingredients might imply. Recipe here

Butterscotch pudding 

Photo via Flickr member onlinepastrychef

Type: Boiled, creamy

What it is: A creamy pudding characterized by brown sugar, which gives it a rich, full taste. Not that you asked, but one of my favorites. Recipe here

Cabinet Pudding 

See: bread and butter pudding. This is a variation with cake instead of bread, and featuring alcohol-soaked fruit. Recipe here


See: Haggis. This is a Spanish version. Recipe here.

Chocolate pudding

Type: Boiled / baked / creamy

What it is: A pudding made with chocolate (well, that was easy). But there are many different types, from the Swiss Miss sort to baked varieties and homemade boiled types. Here's but one mere recipe, but there are many.

Chocolate biscuit pudding

Type: Boiled

What it is: a traditional Sri Lankan dessert consisting of moistened biscuits (the cookie kind) and chocolate pudding. Sometimes topped with nuts. It looks awesome to me! Recipe here

Christmas pudding

Photo via Flickr member riggott

Type: Steamed / baked

What it is: Made with brandy-soaked fruit and treacle. Some suggest, for dynamic serving, to light it on fire before digging in, which I think is optional. It's the fire that makes it cooler than fruitcake, I think. Recipe here

Coconut pudding

Type: Boiled

What it is: A coconut milk mixture thickened with gelatin and allowed to firm in molds. I'm told it's a popular dim sum dessert. Recipe here

Cottage pudding

Type: Baked / boiled

What it is: A cake which is served with a generous amount of vanilla pudding sauce, which thickens the cake and makes it nice and moist. Recipe here


Type: Steamed / baked

What it is: A large pudding which is steamed in a sort of dumpling-like shape. "Clootie" apparently refers to "little cloth", ostensibly what the pudding is steamed in. Filled with raisins, dates, golden syrup. Made with suet. A traditional treat in Scotland. Recipe here

Corn pudding

Type: Baked

What it is: Not to be confused with creamed corn, this is a baked side dish with corn, cream, and sometimes even cornmeal added to thicken the mixture. Recipe here

Creamed corn

Type: Boiled, creamy

What it is: A mixture of cream and corn which is thickened to a gooey, slightly sweet mixture. Personally I don't know why it's considered a dinner dish when it's so sweet it could be a breakfast mush. Recipe here

Creme caramel

Type: Steamed/baked

What it is: The European version of flan. A thick custard baked with caramel on the bottom, which is flipped before serving. Recipe here. 

Diplomat pudding

Type: Steamed, baked

What it is: French. A steamed mixture of bread or ladyfingers, milk, fruits, and seasonings which looks quite cake-like once finished. Recipe here

Diplomatic pudding

Type: Steamed, baked

What it is: Not to be confused with the French version, this one is Cuban, but otherwise somewhat similar to Diplomat pudding. Recipe here

Dock pudding

Type: Savory, boiled

What it is: Leaves and nettles are combined with oats, onions, and seasonings to make this unique savory pudding. Recipe here

Dutch baby

Type: Baked / steamed

What it is: Like Yorkshire pudding, but made without meat drippings. Recipe here. Peanut butter recipe here.

Figgy duff

Type: Steamed

What it is: A classic Newfoundland treat. In spite of its name, it contains no figs, but rainsins instead. Recipe here.

Figgy Pudding

Type: Steamed / baked

What it is: A fig, breadcrumb, and spice mixture which is baked in a water bath. Recipe here


See: Creme caramel. Recipe here.


Type: Boiled

What it is: A thickened mixture of stewed fruit which is served with cream. Originally from the UK, but you can find it in retro cookbooks in the US, too. Recipe here


Type: Boiled

What it is: A thick, cracked wheat type of porridge, which can be boiled or steamed. Per Wikipedia, "hence its name, which derives from the Latin word frumentum, "grain". It dates back to Medieval Europe, where it was apparently served as a side dish alongside meat. Recipe here.


Type: Boiled

What it is: It's as easy as this: bits of bread, torn apart by hand, and served with hot milk, sugar and spices. A simple UK treat and a humble but tasty dessert. Discussed here


Type: Savory

What it is: Stomach, liver, heart...and oats. It's a savory steamed pudding made with animal parts, thickened with oats. An acquired taste from Scotland. Recipe here.

Hasty pudding

Type: Savory or sweet, boiled, baked

What it is: Also known as Indian pudding. A pudding made primarily with cornmeal mush which was dressed up with anything from pork fat to (in more modern days) molasses, raisins, and sweeteners. Recipe (and more info) here


Type: Boiled

What it is: Creamy coconut cubes. This Polynesian treat is made by boiling coconut milk, water, and sugar together and then thickening with cornstarch. Once firm and cooled, it is cut into squares. Recipe here


Type: Creamy, boiled

What it is: Basically a shelf-stable version of blancmange, made with rennet. It used to be quite popular but has fallen out of favor. Though you can still find it in supermarkets, I dare you to find someone who's eaten it recently. Recipe here.


Type: Boiled, savory

What it is: Also known as "Fatty Porridge" (best name ever), this savory pudding starts with potatoes, cornmeal, and is dressed up with cheese, cream, and other flavorings. It bears some resemblance to polenta, but is far fattier. You'll find it in eastern Europe. Recipe here


Type: Boiled

What it is: Sort of like Turkish creme brulee, but with chicken involved. The name refers to the "bottom of the pot" because that's the portion of the Tavuk göğsü (chicken pudding, below) from where kazandibi comes from. Recipe here.


Type: Boiled, creamy

What it is: A Turkish creation, sort of like rice pudding, but made with flaked almond. Recipe here


Type: Boiled, creamy 

What it is: An Indian take on rice pudding, made by boiling basmati rice with milk and seasonings such as cardamom and saffron. Recipe here.


Type: Baked

What it is: A cakey caramelized coconut and taro pudding from Hawaii. Recipe here.


Type: Boiled

What it is: An Eastern European recipe which combines wheat berries and simmering milk, and is served dotted with fruits, nuts, and seeds. Recipe here

Malvern pudding

Type: Boiled / steamed

What it is: A concotion from the UK: a boiled pudding which is poured over apples and then steamed or baked to finish. Recipe here

Lange vinger pudding

Type: Boiled, creamy

What it is: Lange vinger means "Lady Finger". In this concoction, lady fingers are layered with jam and pudding to make a deliciously stacked dish. Simple recipe here.

Mango Pudding

Type: Boiled, creamy

What it is: Mango pudding is a mainstay at Chinese dim sum restaurants. Made using mangoes and cream, it attains a texture sort of like a pot de creme. Recipe here.


See: Rice pudding. This version is from Algeria. Recipe here

Noodle pudding


Type: Baked, sweet or savory

What it is: AKA Kugel. A creamy baked pudding made with noodles. A traditional Jewish food. Recipe here

Orez cu lapte

See: Rice pudding. This version is Romanian. Recipe here.

Panna cotta

Type: Creamy, boiled

What it is: Meaning "cooked cream", this simple Italian dish is made using milk, sugar, gelatin and cream, though it can be dressed up in any number of ways. Recipe here

Persimmon pudding

Type: Steamed / baked

What it is: Sort of like figgy pudding in construction, this steamed pudding is rich in persimmons, and often served with a "hard sauce" (that means acohol). Recipe here.

Pistachio pudding

Type: Boiled, creamy

What it is: A creamy pudding flavored with pistachios. Also a popular pudding mix, which is greener than any real-life pistachio but very delicious. Recipe here


Type: Baked / steamed

What it is: A Tahitian fruit pudding, made with fruits and thickened with arrowroot and coconut cream. It's traditionally steamed in banana leaves, but can be baked, too. Recipe here

Put chai ko

Photo via Wikimedia commons

Type: Steamed

What it is: A solid pudding cake from China. Recipe here.

Queen of puddings

Type: Baked /steamed

What it is: A rich pudding confection from the United Kingdom, made with a steamed sweetened breadcrumb mixture, summer fruits, and a rich cream topping. Recipe here.

Rice pudding

Photo via Flickr member bgreenlee

Type: Cross-category. Rice puddings can be creamy/boiled, steamed, or baked. Usually, most people think of a sweet pudding first when they think of rice pudding.

What it is: A pudding which has rice at the base, which acts as body and thickener. It's combined with milk or cream, and often sweetened and scented with cinnamon, nutmeg, etc. In the US, it's a Jewish comfort food; there are variations of the pudding all around the world. Recipe here

NOTE on Rice pudding: some variations are listed separately here, but here's a nice roundup from Wikipedia of rice pudding variations from around the world.

  • Bubur Sumsum (Indonesian)
  • Ketan hitam (Indonesian) black glutinous rice porridge
  • Tsamporado (Philippines) chocolate rice pudding
  • Dudhapak (Gujarati) with slow-boiled milk, sugar, basmati rice, nuts, and saffron
  • Firni (Tajik/Afghan/Pakistani/Indian) with broken rice, cardamom and pistachio, reduced to a paste, and served cold
  • Kheer (Nepal/Indian/Pakistani) with slow-boiled milk
  • Kiribath (Sri Lankan) made with coconut milk
  • Moghli (Lebanese) with anise, caraway, and ginger
  • Muhalibiyya (Arabic) with milk, rice flour, sugar, and rosewater
  • Payasam (South Indian) with slow-boiled milk, sugar/jaggery, and nuts
  • Phinni/Paayesh (Bengali) with grounded basmati or parboiled rice, cardamom and pistachio; can be served either hot or cold
  • Pulut hitam(Malaysian/Singaporean) similar to ketan hitam, its Indonesian counterpart
  • Riz bi haleeb (Eastern) or ruz bil-laban (Egyptian), (lit. "rice-with-milk") (Arab) with rosewater and occasionally mastic
  • Shir-berenj/ (Tajik, Afghan, and Iranian)
  • Shola-e zard (Tajik, Afghan, and Iranian) with saffron
  • Şorbeşîr (Kurdish) with cinnamon
  • Zarda wa haleeb (Iraqi) rice prepared with date syrup served in the same dish as with rice prepared with milk

Rag pudding

Type: Savory, steamed

What it is: A savory steamed pudding made with meat, onions, and potatoes, thickened with flour and enriched with cream or butter. Recipe here.

Red pudding

Type: Creamy, boiled

What it is: Danish in descent, this pudding combines rhubarb, sugar, and tapioca, which are boiled together and then served warm, with cream. Recipe here.

Rødgrød or Rote Grütze

Type: Creamy, boiled

What it is: a sort of slurry made from groats or grits (though some recipes even use semolina or sago, or even potato or corn starch), combined with summer berries. The cereal or "grain" type mixture thickens with the fruit, and sweetened, for a pudding-like consistency. Recipe here.

Roz bil-haleeb 

See: Rice pudding. This version is from Lebanon. Recipe here.

Roz de laban

See: Rice pudding. This version is from Egypt. Recipe here.

Rượu nếp

Type: Steamed

What it is: Hailing from Vietnam, this version of rice pudding is made with glutinous rice which has been fermented (often with yeast) and then steamed in a banana leaf. Recipe here.

Sago pudding

Type: Baked

What it is: A pudding made with sago (not totally unlike tapioca) and milk, sugar and other seasonings. I've seen recipes noted as being South African and Australian, so I'm not sure where the dish is from. Recipe here


Photo via Flickr member accidentalhedonist

Type: Savory, baked/steamed

What it is: A Philadelphia and Pennsylvania Dutch tradition: sort of pork and bread crumb mush, made with onions or other seasonings. Typically served at breakfast. Recipe here

Spoon bread

Type: Baked, savory (sometimes)

What it is: A thick pudding / souffle made with cornmeal which sometimes errs sweet, sometimes savory. It's often cooked in a casserole dish and served as a side, as cornbread would be. Recipe here

Spotted dick

Photo via Flickr member caveman

Type: Steamed/baked

What it is: The most likely pudding name to induce tittering. In this UK classic, a fruit and currant (those are the "spots") steamed pudding is served with a thick custard sauce. In my opinion, that's what makes it. Recipe here

Sticky toffee or toffee date pudding

Type: Steamed/baked

What it is: A fairly normal steamed pudding becomes a British classic when smothered with a sticky toffee sauce. Sticky date pudding is pretty much the same, but with dates mixed in. Recipe here.

Summer pudding

Type: Steamed, boiled 

What it is: A concoction hailing from the UK composed of white bread, berries, juices, and currants. The bread turns pink and soft thanks to the summer berries, which give the pudding its name. Recipe here


Type: Boiled

What it is: Instant pudding made with pudding instead of milk. Amazing! Also invented by me. Recipe here.

Sussex pond pudding

Type: Steamed

What it is: A steamed, moist pudding from the UK  that oozes liquid when cut into--hence the "pond" reference. Recipe here


Type: Creamy, boiled, or baked

What it is: A creamy Turkish rice pudding which is sometimes boiled, sometimes baked. Recipe here.

Tapioca pudding

Type: Creamy, boiled

What it is: A boiled pudding made using tapioca pearls (derived from starchy tubers) combined with cream or milk, eggs, and sugar. Recipe here

Tavuk göğsü - in my opinion, the weirdest one on the list.

Photo via Wikimedia commons

Type: Savory, boiled

What it is: A delicacy in Turkey, made with chicken and milk. But--wait for it--it's sweetened and served as dessert. This officially makes it the first dessert I've ever seen made with chicken. Recipe here.


Photo via Flickr member ulikleafear

Type: Creamy, boiled 

What it is: A rice pudding hailing from Normandy, France. Composed of rice cooked with milk and sugar, and scented with cinnamon and nutmeg. 

Tiết canh

Type: Savory

What it is: A Vietnamese "pudding" from thickened blood and meat. Read more here

Treacle sponge pudding

Type: Baked /steamed

What it is: A British treat made by combining eggs, sugar, flour, and the usual suspects with a generous amount of golden syrup, then steaming until it makes a spongey, cakey steamed pudding. Recipe here

Vanilla pudding

Photo via Flickr member bochalla

Type: Creamy, or steamed/baked

What it is: A pudding scented with vanilla beans or extract for a vanilla-rich flavor. Vanilla pudding is not only a type of pudding, but a canvas. Any type of flavor can be added to it, from nutella to peanut butter to cappuccino to...well, let your mind go wild! Recipe here


Photo via Wikimedia commons

Type: Steamed

What it is: A pudding popular in Sri Lanka, made with coconut milk, eggs, and sugar. Recipe here.

White pudding

Photo via Flickr member Bob Walker 

Type: Savory, baked 

What it is: A savory "pudding" composed of oatmeal, suet, and minced liver. It's a variation on black pudding, and is served at breakfast in Scotland or Ireland. Recipe here

Yorkshire pudding

Photo via Flickr member zoyachubby

Type: Savory, baked 

What it is: A baked pudding which starts with beef drippings which are augmented by flour, eggs, and flavorings. They can be served popover-style or like a big pancake. Served as a side dish alongside savory meat dishes. Recipe here.


Type: Creamy, boiled 

What it is: A boiled rice pudding hailing from Turkey, scented with saffron, which gives it a unique yellow color. Recipe here.

Have I missed your favorite pudding? Leave a comment and I'll be sure to add it. 

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