Chocolate Fudge Pudding

Hot fudge pudding and ice cream.

I have two self-saucing chocolate pudding recipes in my collection. One is my Mother’s and one is my Grandmother’s. The thing I find fascinating about them is the difference in the flavour profile that a mere few decades can make.

My Grandmother’s recipe is rich – very rich. It is made with butter and cocoa and really does meet the label of fudge. My Mother’s recipe is sweet. Tooth-achingly sweet. But still good. I’ll feature both recipes on this site, but my Grandmother’s recipe is my favourite.

The first time I made this, the richness overwhelmed me. I use Dutch process cocoa in my cooking and the chocolate flavour was almost too much. The Dutch process removes the acidity that may lurk in cocoa powder and gives the cocoa a rich dark colour as well, however it is not necessary to make this recipe work.

Also, the original recipe calls for shortening as one of the ingredients. My American readers will be surprised to learn that this is not something widely available on Australian supermarket shelves. I used butter.

I had decided that, the next time I made it, I wanted to add something to cut the richness. It occurred to me that adding some orange zest might just do the trick – I was right. If you are inclined toward the alcoholic, try adding a spoonful of orange liqueur to the batter as well/instead – something like Grand Marnier or Cointreau would work well.

Preheat your oven to 180°C/350°F. Start with the pudding ingredients and sift together the flour, sugar and cocoa into a basin.

Sift the dry pudding ingredients.

Sift the dry pudding ingredients.

At this point, zest a largish orange and add to the dry ingredients.

Add orange zest.

Add orange zest.

Add the sultanas at this point too.

Melt the shortening (or butter, if you wish) and mix together with the milk. Add the egg to this liquid and mix lightly.  Pour this mixture over the sifted ingredients. This is when you would add liqueur if you wished. Beat until well combined.

Yes, it's blurry. We can blame the liqueurs if you like...

Yes, it’s blurry. We can blame the liqueurs if you like…

Dig out a nice deep ovenware dish and place your batter in the middle of it. The dish doesn’t need to be greased or prepared in any way. Don’t panic.

Also, save yourself some trouble and place the baking dish on a metal tray. This will make putting the pudding into, and then taking it out of, the oven infinitely easier. Really.

Put the batter in an ovenproof dish.

Put the batter in an oven-proof dish.

Moving to the sauce ingredients now: melt the butter. I use a glass jug in the microwave.

Mix the butter, the cocoa and hot water all together until smooth.

It will look kind of mesmerizingly amazing...

It will look kind of mesmerizingly amazing…

Pour this liquid over the batter in the baking dish. If it looks awful, it’s okay. Really. You haven’t ruined it, I promise.

It will look appalling. You're doing it right.

It will look appalling. Don’t worry, you’re doing it right.

Now bake it for 30-35 mins. Remember to use the metal baking tray as well.

I like to serve this after a slap up roast dinner. I get the washing up for the pudding out of the way while the roast is still cooking, and then put the pudding in to bake when I serve the meal. That way it cooks while we are eating and is ready when we have finished our mains.

Welcome to decadence. (Note the oven tray.)

Welcome to decadence. (Note the oven tray.)

Cut into small pieces and serve, spooning the sauce below the solid pudding into the bowls as well.

Grandmother Sayers's Chocolate Fudge Pudding.

Grandmother Sayers’s Chocolate Fudge Pudding.

A reminder that this is VERY RICH. You only want small servings. Garnish with a small scoop of plain vanilla ice cream or a spoonful of dolloping cream.

You’re welcome.

You've gotta try this. Now.

You’ve gotta try this. Now.

Chocolate Fudge Pudding

  • Servings: 4-8
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print



125 g sugar

1 egg

1 cup self-raising flour

2 tbsps cocoa powder

zest of 1 orange

60 g shortening (or unsalted butter)

¼ cup milk

¼ cup sultanas


90 g unsalted butter

2 tbsps cocoa powder

1 cup hot water


Heat oven to 180°C/350°F.

Starting with the pudding ingredients, sift together flour, sugar and cocoa and place in a mixing basin.

Add the orange zest and sultanas.

Melt the shortening/butter and add milk. Mix in the egg.

Pour onto the dry ingredients in the basin and mix well. (My Grandmother’s recipe says to beat by hand for 2 minutes, if that helps!)

Place in a clean, deep oven-ware dish that you have placed on a larger metal tray for ease of handling.

Using the sauce ingredients, melt the butter and then mix with the water and cocoa.

Pour over the pudding batter in the oven ware dish.

Bake for 30-35 mins.

Serve with plain vanilla ice cream.


Soak the sultanas in 1 or 2 tablespoons of orange flavoured liqueur before adding to the pudding mixture.






Well, today the pizza was made.

Fast food without a phone call

Fast food without a phone call.

I rolled out the pizza dough that I had in the refrigerator, spread it with some of that red capsicum pesto from the fridge door and scattered it with some grated mozzarella cheese. Then I chopped up the rest of the BBQ chicken from the freezer, the last red capsicum from the crisper was also diced and strewn and then I chopped up some black olives and added those as well.

All that took maybe 10 minutes to do while the oven heated up. The pizza was added to the oven and 20 minutes later we were eating it.

My step-father and I had it for lunch and the leftovers are to be The Boy’s dinner. I have a pub quiz tonight and my team has a food voucher to spend.

I’ve started doing my shopping for the next fortnight.

Re-restocking the larder

Re-restocking the larder

This series of posts since my last shop seems to have been quite popular …*waves hello to all my new followers both here and on Facebook.* I’m actually quite overwhelmed by the response to tell the truth.

The question is, should I continue doing them or is everyone bored silly? Would you prefer a weekly digest instead of a daily update?

Please let me know. Unless you actually tell me then I have no way of knowing what you would like to see.

So, comment here or on the Budget Bounty Facebook page. While you’re at it, tell me what else you want to read about and I’ll see what I can do.




(The Boy’s) Bean Burritos

Bean Burrito mix

This is one of those dishes that takes more time to describe than to make.

It started out as a series of desperate texts to The Boy a few years ago. He was studying in another city and it sounded as though his diet and his health were in a truly parlous state – largely because food costs a lot and cooking is hard when you don’t know how to work things.

Which is why I started this blog.

I needed to get him eating at least one meal a week – preferably one with decent nutrition. So I fiddled a bit at my place using some tinned goods, came up with this and sent it to him in about 4 text messages.

Don't be afraid of canned food.

Don’t be afraid of tinned food.

I’ll explain in slightly greater depth here. Please note, this dish costs about $4. Tacos and other flatbreads are extra.

As an aside, this is an excellent dish to teach to hungry teenagers who demand feeding every 15 minutes. It’s healthy and it will fill up those hollow legs quite well.

For two people, you’ll need an onion, a medium-sized red capsicum (or green if you prefer), a tin of kidney beans and a tin of diced tomatoes. If the idea of eating a vegetarian dish induces a cold sweat, then try adding a diced rasher of bacon into the pan with the onion.

You’ll also need whatever spices you want to add. The Boy uses a Taco Mix I bought him at a friend’s YIAH party.

We serve this with tortillas, tacos or wraps warmed in the oven while the beans are cooked. It’s also appeared on the table accompanied by corn chips for dipping.

Dice your onion and capsicum and then sauté them over a gentle heat until the onion is translucent. If I’m the one cooking, I’ll add a finely chopped stick of celery just to add some colour and crunch.

Start with your fresh vegies

Start with your fresh vegies.

Now drain your kidney beans and rinse. Add the beans and the tin of tomatoes to the pan. Again, if I’m cooking, I’ll also throw in a small tin of corn kernels. This adds even more colour, a slightly different texture, and a touch of sweetness. If you are doubling the recipe, then try using a tin of kidney beans and a tin of black beans for even more colour and variety.

Add your canned goods to the pan.

Add your canned goods to the pan.

Keep stirring it over a low heat and mix in as much of your spices as you wish. You want the dish to blend well together and thicken a little.

A few minutes later.

A few minutes later.

You can use a taco seasoning mix if you have one. If you don’t, then try a sprinkling each of ground cumin, ground coriander and sweet smoked paprika. Add chilli powder instead of the paprika – if that’s what you have – and try doing it with a dash of ground cinnamon for a sweet surprise. Add salt if you must.

When it gets to a texture that you think will work well as a burrito filling, take it off the heat and serve.

Serve 'em up!

Serve ’em up!

Just to clarify that last bit. You don’t want this to be too ‘wet’ or your burrito, taco or tortilla will turn into a soggy mess.

Now you can place this into a wrap with lettuce and other salad items if you want to. I tend to just sprinkle it with tasty cheese and sometimes add a dollop of natural yoghurt (you could use sour cream), then tear bits off the tortilla and wrap those around spoonfuls of beans  – a kind of mini-burrito for the hand-eye-co-ordination-challenged.

Eat it anyway you please really. This keeps well in the refrigerator and can easily be doubled or tripled. I wouldn’t recommend freezing it simply because it is so quick to make up! Save your freezer space for something that takes hours, not minutes.

Bean Burritos

  • Servings: 1-2
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print


1 x medium onion, diced

1 x medium red or green capsicum, diced

1 x stick celery, finely chopped (optional)

1 x 400g tin kidney beans, drained and rinsed

1 x 400g tin diced tomatoes (may have other flavours added if you wish)

1 x 200g tin sweet corn kernels, drained and rinsed (optional)

taco spice mix (or any combination of spices you would like to try)


Heat a frying pan over gentle heat and add a tablespoon of oil.

Add your diced onion and capsicum and fry gently until onion is translucent. Add celery if using.

Stir in your spice mix, heating gently until you can just smell their aroma.

Add your beans and canned tomatoes and stir over low heat until liquid thickens.

Serve garnished with grated cheese and/or sour cream.

May be used rolled up in a tortilla with salad as a burrito, or in a bowl accompanied by plain rice or corn chips (or both).

$4 people.

Day 7 – It’s done!

Okay.  We made it, despite the germ warfare we’ve had to endure.

Here is the final instalment.

Breakfast:             Toast and Vegemite

Lunch:                     Left over Pizza Scroll

Afternoon Tea:    Café Latté Tea

Dinner:                    Asian flavoured meatballs, with mixed vegetables and turmeric rice

Asian flavoured meatballs

Asian flavoured meatballs, vegetables and turmeric rice

Day 5

We’re getting into the business end of things here!

Breakfast:                  Porridge

Lunch:                          Left-over Pasta

Afternoon Tea:         Chilli Chocolate Tea and Anzac Biscuits

Dinner:                         Slow Cooker Beef Casserole

Dessert:                       None – we were both too tired from coughing!



Day 4

Okay. We’ve survived this far into influenza land and I’m growing sick of the basket of challenge goods on my counter tops, so let’s get going again.

Today we et:

Breakfast:                 Porridge

Lunch:                        Pressure cooker soup

Afternoon tea:        Chai and Anzac Biscuits

Dinner:                      Almost genuine Fried Rice

Dessert:                    The Boy had Apple Crumble

Two bowls of fried rice

Almost Genuine Fried Rice

Day 4 – sort of…

Unfortunately, the challenge has had to be put on hold due to ill health.

Both myself and The Boy are running high fevers and a nasty cough is threatening the structural integrity of our lungs. (And scaring both cats.)

As a result, the desire to prepare food is minimal (I must be sick!) and the thought of actually pushing any of it past our cough and sneeze-grazed soft palates is non-existent.

Thankfully, the soup from Day 3 made several litres worth and this has proven ideal sick bed nosh. I look forward to the day that I can actually smell and taste what I am placing in my mouth again though!

The Boy is supplementing his soup with regular servings of Apple Crumble – so at least I can be comforted that he is eating a balanced diet (ahem).

So, although no further cooking has happened, neither has any expenditure – except on tissues, lemsip, and various formulations of Codral, etc.

The supply of leftovers that I had intended to flourish triumphantly at the end of the challenge is also being diminished – so they’ll probably just be noted and not flourished quite so much… (goshdarnit)

However, on the bright side, this does show the value of having a supply of what we call “freezer food” for situations just like this one. Times when you can’t cook to save yourself, but when eating fast or low quality food would simply cause an extension of the period of poor health.

Behold!  We be ‘Walking the Talk’, me Hearties!

(Be gentle, I’m very ill and drowning in my own lungs….)

We’ll be back online with this again soon, I promise. In the meantime I shall do my best to post some of the recipes that have been used.

Take care.


Day 3

Breakfast:                  Porridge for me, Multigrain toast for him

Lunch:                          Leftover Pasta from Day 1

Afternoon tea:         Chilli Chocolate tea and Anzac biscuits

Dinner:                       Vegetable and meatball soup with barley


There’s no danger of running out of food, although The Boy was bemoaning the lack of variety. I think this might be more due to the limited choice of breakfast than to the delicious main meals I am serving despite my current position as a sufferer of Man Flu…

However, he was the one who issued the challenge and he (of all people) should have realised that limited budget equals limited choice!

Two steaming bowls of vegetable and meatball soup

Vegetable and meatball soup with barley, cooked in the pressure cooker

Day 2




We were both elsewhere, but leftovers were the plan.

 Afternoon tea:

A nice cup of Oolong and an Anzac biscuit


Slow cooked Asian-spiced Beef with rice and mixed vegetables


The Boy had some Apple Crumble.

As this illness really starts to take hold, I’m so glad I diced and marinated the meat for dinner before freezing it.

So much easier to just toss it in the slow cooker and go back to my sick bed and tissues!