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Everything You Need to Know About Treacle Sponge

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Everything You Need to Know About Treacle Sponge

This nostalgic British pudding has been a staple for generations, but how do you make it? Well, we’ve got you covered! In this article, find out more about this classic pud and discover tips and tricks on how to make the perfect treacle sponge – with Lyle’s Golden Syrup of course!

What is a treacle sponge?

Often referred to as syrup sponge pudding, this is a classic British dessert that fills people with nostalgia – as it was a very popular school dinner.

Believe it or not, this dessert doesn’t typically contain treacle. It’s actually made with golden syrup – also known as light treacle – which is probably what led to the name ‘treacle sponge’.

Treacle sponge is a dessert that truly celebrates the delicious flavours of Lyle’s Golden Syrup. With golden syrup in the sponge mixture and extra in the pudding basin, luscious syrup oozes down the outside of the sponge when it’s baked and removed from the tin – the thought alone is enough to make your mouth water!

This light and fluffy sponge cake is best served hot and is the perfect pudding to warm you up on a cold winter’s day.

How do you cook syrup sponge pudding? 

A treacle sponge is traditionally steamed, giving this British staple its signature light and fluffy texture. Our syrup sponge pudding recipe clearly explains how to steam this delicious dessert.

After spooning the mixture into the basin and levelling the top, cut a circle of parchment paper that is around two times bigger than the pudding basin top and pleat the centre of the circle. Then place the parchment paper on top of the basin (ensuring the pleat is in the centre) and cover it with foil – making sure you pleat the centre of the foil too. The pleats in the parchment paper and foil allow the sponge to rise while baking.

Once you’ve done this, tie some string around the basin to make a handle. This will make it a lot easier to carefully remove the pudding from the saucepan when it’s cooked.

To steam the treacle sponge, put it on a heatproof dish that’s placed on the bottom of a big saucepan, fill the saucepan with boiling water and cover it with a lid to keep the steam in the pan. Placing the pudding on a heatproof dish keeps it off of direct heat, helping the sponge to cook evenly.

Take a look at our recipe to see the full instructions on how to make this tasty pudding!

3 mistakes to avoid when making this delightful pudding

Overmixing your pudding mixture

Overmixing can result in a dense and heavy sponge, rather than the light and fluffy texture we’re aiming for.

Not sealing the parchment paper and foil correctly

Don’t let your steam escape! You want to lock in the steam to achieve maximum fluffiness. 

Cooking too quickly

Steaming is a slow cooking method and rushing it could result in an unevenly cooked or undercooked pudding. So, remember when it comes to treacle sponge, patience is indeed a virtue!  

Top tips to help you make an incredible treacle sponge

 Make sure you have enough water to steam your puddings

We recommend adding enough boiling water into the saucepan to cover the bottom half of the pudding basin. But be sure to keep an eye on it and make sure the pan doesn’t boil dry, otherwise you’ll be left with underbaked puddings!

Try baking it in the microwave

Want a quick syrup sponge pudding? Bake it in the microwave on full power for four minutes, or until the sponge comes away from the sides and springs back when you touch it.

Spice up your sponge for a kick of flavour

Feeling adventurous? Add some ginger to your sponge mixture for a warming winter feel or add lemon zest for a citrus kick!

Try it with custard, cream or ice cream 

Our syrup sponge pudding is delicious on its own, but it’s even better with cream, custard or ice cream!

Reheating and storing your pudding

If you have any leftovers, let them cool to room temperature, cover and keep them in the fridge for up to three days. To reheat your treacle sponge, simply place a spoonful of Lyle’s golden syrup into a bowl, add your sponge and heat it until it’s warmed through. Adding some extra golden syrup will prevent the sponge pudding from drying out.

Grab some Lyle’s and get baking! 

Now you know everything you need to know about treacle sponge, it’s time to roll your sleeves up and get stuck in! Be sure to pick up some of our delicious golden syrup before you get started.

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