This recipe was kindly given to the Fife Diet by Thomas McGregor. It is a an old family recipe for cloutie dumpling. The cloutie refers to the cloth that the pudding is cooked in. Traditionally this was served on birthdays with pennies inside. If you want to add coins, wrap 5p coins or charms in waxed or greaseproof paper and add to the mixture.
1/2 lb self raising flour
1/4 lb brown sugar
1 block of shredded suet
1 tablespoon mixed spice
1 tablespoon ground ginger
1/4 lb raisins
1/4 lb sultanas
1 tablespoon treacle
Put the flour, spices, sugar and treacle in a bowl and mix with the milk until soft.
Dip a large tea towel into boiling water, then drain well and lay out flat on a table. Sprinkle with flour and then sugar, you need an even but not thick layer. Place the mixture in the middle of the cloth, then bring the ends up and tie them together securely with string, allowing a little room for expansion.
Place on a heatproof plate in a large saucepan. Top up with enough boiling water just to cover the pudding, then put a lid on the pan and simmer gently for 3 3/4- 4 hours.
Check the water level occasionally and top up if necessary.
Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas4. Wearing oven gloves remove the pudding from the pan and dip it briefly into a pan of cold water. Cut the string, untie the cloth and invert the dumpling to an ovenproof plate. Place in the oven for 10-15 minutes, just until the skin feels less sticky. Sprinkle with the caster sugar and serve hot with custard.