I have metal pudding bowls with clip on lids. I bought them from Amazon almost 10 years ago and find them so much less faff than glass pyrex dishes where you have to make a pleated lid out of baking paper and foil, and then tie it up with string making a handle at the same time. I have never been dextrous with knots. The second tutorial link above covers the paper and string method. (NB. Amazon don’t seem to stock them anymore but they do have a different range of lidded pudding basins if you search the site)
Compared to making a sponge mix, spooning it into a cake tin and baking in the oven for 30 minutes or so steaming could look like a lot of time and effort but please, please, please give it a try. Firstly, it’s no more time to prep the pudding for steaming than it is a cake for the oven, and while the cooking time is a lot longer you don’t really need to do anything during that time. Nothing that comes out of the oven will ever match a steamed sponge in terms of lightness. It’s like eating spongey air.
I grease my pudding bowl and place the jam in the bottom:
Spoon in the batter:
Clip on the lid. Place in the steamer, over a pan of simmering water:
Leave for 1.5 – 2 hours. It’s not precise like a baking time and the pudding won’t suffer for being left to steam longer than actually needed to cook it so don’t feel pressured by the cooking time or guess when it’s ready. I always give it two hours.
Turn out and enjoy!
NB. Do not adjust your monitor – I did serve rather large portions. In my defence it was my birthday and freezing cold; I feel either of these facts alone would excuse me but - together - form a rock solid argument. A pudding this size will serve 6 people easily....just because I cut it into quarters doesn’t mean you have to!
115g caster sugar
115g self raising flour
1-2 tablespoons milk