Sago Plum Pudding

My Mum’s Original Recipe with tweaks by Karlene


  • 4 Tbsp of Sago or Tapioca balls
  • 1 cup of milk or milk equivalent such as almond milk or coconut milk
  • 1 ½ tsp bicarb (get the aluminium free type from the health food store)
  • 2 Tbsp butter (yes use butter unless you can’t)
  • ¾ cup brown sugar (or not if wanting to be sugar-free use less or none at all)
  • ½ tsp grated lemon rind
  • 1 cup soft white breadcrumbs (l use gluten-free)
  • 1 cup mixed dried fruit my mum always threw in figs, dates and raisins and some red glace cherries for the Christmas look, but not the green ones (not sure why.) Then she added slivered almonds for that Christmas crunch
  • Pinch of salt (pink Himalayan crystal salt)


Pour the milk on the washed sago and soak overnight

In the morning add soda

Cream the butter and sugar then add lemon rind

Add the soaked sago

Fold in breadcrumbs


And salt

Mix it really well

Turn into a well-greased basin (we had a special bowel for the job similar to a Pyrex bowl)

Cover with greased paper and then foil over the top and tie off with twine

Put the bowel in a big pot with water and steam for 2 ½ – 3 hrs. Check it to make sure it has water. (Boil any additional water in the jug first to keep the simmer going.)

Turn out carefully (hopefully it comes out in one piece!! This was always such a moment at home – mum would be happy if it came out in one – but it always tasted so good any which way it came out)

Serve hot with cream, brandied custard, ice cream or anything that takes your Christmas fancy – because you know – it’s Christmas!!


Karlene (and Mum) xx