What's Up With English "Pudding?" Is It Like Chocolate Pudding?

You've read about it in old books and seen it on menus throughout the United Kingdom: it's pudding. But it's not a Snack Pack, not even close. Here's the difference between the famous dessert and the lunchbox delight.

The origin of English pudding dates back to 1305, where the Middle English word "poding" connoted a "meat-filled animal stomach." Thankfully the word evolved to pudding and took on an entirely different meaning. In the U.S. and Canada, pudding is a milk-based dessert similar to a custard.

English pudding, however, can be sweet or savory. The savory versions include Yorkshire pudding (fried batter doused with meat gravy), black pudding (sausage made with congealed blood) and suet pudding (boiled or steamed mutton or beef fat). Try throwing one of those in a kid's lunch box. English dessert puddings are more homogenous and usually involve eggs, starch and dairy, not unlike a dense cake. Sweet English puddings include treacle pudding made from steamed sponge cake, and Christmas pudding made from dried fruit held together by egg and suet.

This puts our beloved bread pudding somewhere in between the smooth and sweet pudding and Brits' substantial side dish.

More Whatchamacallit from Food Republic: