Steamed Sponge Cake Pudding with Raisins and Further Adventures in Food

In an attempt to not get flagged by every spam filter known to man I decided to call this post “Steamed Sponge Cake Pudding with Raisins” when there is really a better, more accurate, and funnier title out there on the horizon. Let’s just say, that this British sponge cake pudding is now called Spotted Richard by those who don’t wish to offend. That’s right, a chance encounter at a grocery store led me to have in my possession Spotted, cough, cough, “Richard” in a can! Better still, microwaveable! Oh, the wrongness doesn’t end there my friends…..

When visiting Rochester, NY my husband and I stopped in at one of the many Wegmans grocery stores in the area. I loved their international food section! After recently complaining of my inability to find hominy (dried or canned) I quickly snatched up a bag of dried hominy from their Latin section. Oh hominy, how I’ve missed you! Well as we wandered further down the aisle we came across a British/English section. And there is was…..Heinz’s Spotted Dick….in a can. Just in case that didn’t seem wrong enough, there was a proud oval on the can, proclaiming it….microwaveable! I had to have it!

Spotted a can.

Now, as the owner of a canned Spotted Dick I set about preparing it. Let me first explain that I have never had Spotted Dick. Honestly, until seeing the can on the shelf I wasn’t even sure what Spotted Dick was! I’m going to guess that there is a proud Spotted Dick tradition in Britain, but this is America baby, so I bought my Spotted Dick in a can thanks to Heinz, and decided that the only appropriate preparation technique for this oddity would be the microwave. To the microwave!

Spotted Dick, under glass. How classy.

Preparing it was super easy. Open up the top with a can opener, turn it out onto a microwave safe plate, cover with a microwave safe bowl, cook on high for two minutes, then let it sit for two minutes.

And the big reveal!

A microwaved Spotted Dick.

It looks just awful, doesn’t it? I mean, unappealing in every way. Truth told, it wasn’t too bad. It tasted like a very moist, odd sponge cake variant of gingerbread with raisins. Also, crazy sweet. For about 5 minutes of effort, and weeks of Spotted Dick in a can jokes, it was a fantastic purchase. I’m not sure if I would pick up another one or not. Guess we’ll find out the next time I make it to a Wegmans in Rochester.

As long as we’re on the subject of British food, indulge me in a moment of BBC science fiction geekiness. I’m a big fan of the show “Red Dwarf”. While in college, I watched it every week with friends. I always tell my sci-fi inclined friends that I would suck up having to sit through “Doctor Who” so that I could watch “Red Dwarf”. And despite that my husband still married me, it must be love. Even more evidence of my husband’s love was that he bought me the whole series on DVD, which he watched with me.

One of his favorite characters, as well as mine, is Ace Rimmer, the heroic alternate universe version of Arnold Rimmer, the whiny, annoying regular character in the series. Ace Rimmer’s catchphrase is “Smoke me a kipper, I’ll be back for breakfast!” Like the geeks we are, my husband and I now frequently tell each other, “Smoke me a kipper, I’ll be back for breakfast!” So while on our cruise last year, when my husband saw on the breakfast menu “Smoked Kipper” he felt obligated to try it. Holy crap was it good!

So, inspired by my British food acquisition he decided to buy the things he needed to recreate his Smoked Kipper breakfast. It was tough, capers had to be bought, tomatoes had to be sliced and fried, potatoes cooked, and hardest of all was getting the smoked kipper. (In case the sarcasm wasn’t apparent, it was pretty simple.) In the end, our smoked kippers came to us from the exotic locale of Jersey City. Glad we hit the international food aisle!

Brought to you by Jersey City, NJ.

Anyway, here are the fruits of his labor. I know, it looks like the least desirable breakfast ever, but it tasted fantastic! Amazingly good! Give it a try sometime!

Sure, it looks like hell, but it tastes great!