Super Puddin’ – Mid-Century Recipe Guest Test Sunday

Posted on Mar 9 2014 - 8:00am by Erica

Technically, the name of this dessert is “Lemon Cake Top Pudding.” But I’m supposed to want to call it Super Puddin’ after I try it.


I guess “Pile of Lemon Goop” wasn’t going to sell enough fruit.

3.5 from 2 reviews
Super Puddin' – Mid-Century Recipe Guest Test Sunday
  • 3 tbsp. butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 4 egg yolks
  • ⅓ cup fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tsp. grated lemon rind
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • 3 tbsp. flour
  • 1 cup milk
  • 4 egg whites
  • ⅓ cup toasted slivered almonds
  1. Cream butter, add sugar gradually, and cream together until light and fluffy. Add egg yolks and beat well. Add flour, lemon juice, rind, salt and mix well. Stir in milk. Blend in ¼ cup almonds. Beat egg whites until stiff, fold into mixture.
  2. Pour into loaf baking dish, 9 x 5 inches. Set in pan of hot water and bake in slow oven (325°F.) 40 minutes. Turn thermostat to 350° and bake until brown, about 10 minutes.
  3. Sprinkle with remaining almonds and serve either warm or chilled. Makes 8 servings.


So Buzz and I have always had this theory about the term puddin’.


It’s acceptable to call somebody puddin’ if you’re doing it affectionately. Kids, animals, significant others, any of these could be conceivably called puddin’ as an affectionate nickname.


This is a rather regional phenomenon, of course. My New England vocabulary doesn’t have it, but I’ve heard it occasionally when I lived in Indiana and South Carolina. Even there it isn’t an extremely common nickname, though.


On the other hand, pudding is pretty much never acceptable under any circumstances. It just doesn’t sound complimentary, or even vaguely kind. That little g makes a big difference.


Looking at this lumpy lemony goop, I had a suspicion that we were moving a bit more towards pudding than puddin’ with this one.

But I’ve been wrong before. So I cheerfully baked and served and called Buzz downstairs for a tasting (asking him to wear his most lemony shirt).


“Why does it smell like fried chicken?”

What?” I have to admit, that’s the last thing I expected him to say. But I sniffed the plate, and sure enough… fried chicken. “OK, I have no idea. Eat it anyway.”


He still didn’t want to eat it. But he’s brave.


“It doesn’t taste like fried chicken. Just pudding with a squishy top.”

Verdict: Tasty, slightly odd, lemon pudding.

Tasting Notes:

The pudding layer of this was very runny, suggesting that it needed to cook for a while longer (or at a higher temperature). Despite that, the flavor is bright and sweet. I can only assume the fried chicken smell was due to the toasted almonds, which were a bit on the burnt side of toasted. Interesting!

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Erica was inspired to learn to cook by a complete lack of home economics classes in high school, and a love of old books. When using antique cookbooks to teach herself some skills, she realized a lot of the recipes were pretty strange by modern standards. All that fun testing just begged to be shared with the world. Regular recipe testing can be found here on Mid-Century Menu, on Erica's Retro Recipe Attempts blog, and also I Ate The 80's.

9 Comments so far. Feel free to join this conversation.

  1. Lassie March 9, 2014 at 10:38 am - Reply

    I always liked this. (There’s a chocolate version not so good, the pudding part being bland and thin.) Surprised it didn’t get a better review!

    • Tipsykit March 9, 2014 at 4:58 pm - Reply

      Whaaat? I LOVE the chocolate version of this! It helps to make it with a really good cocoa powder, though.

    • Erica Retrochef March 9, 2014 at 10:08 pm - Reply

      Yeah, I don’t know what was wrong with it, I had high hopes going in too!

  2. dkzody March 9, 2014 at 1:51 pm - Reply

    Leave off the almonds and I’m in.

    • Erica March 9, 2014 at 2:08 pm - Reply

      The almonds added a nice crunch, but certainly aren’t critical 🙂

  3. Lisa B. March 9, 2014 at 11:17 pm - Reply

    One of my friends used to call his daughter Puddin. Only problem was, she hated pudding. One day, she puddled up in tears and said, “Daddy, I think it’s mean to call a person something slimey.” He never did it again.

  4. Tipsykit March 10, 2014 at 1:09 am - Reply

    Cooks Illustrated magazine just did an updated version of this recipe that looked pretty good. The site has a paywall so I can’t link to it, so here is the whole thing.
    1 cup whole milk
    1/2 cup heavy cream
    3 tablespoons grated lemon zest plus 1/2 cup juice (3 lemons)
    1 cup (7 ounces) sugar
    1/4 cup (1 1/4 ounces) all-purpose flour
    1/2 teaspoon baking powder
    1/8 teaspoon salt
    2 large eggs, separated, plus 2 large whites
    1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1. Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 325 degrees. Bring milk and cream to simmer in medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Remove pan from heat, whisk in lemon zest, cover pan, and let stand for 15 minutes. Meanwhile, fold dish towel in half and place in bottom of large roasting pan. Place six 6-ounce ramekins on top of towel and set aside pan.
    2. Strain milk mixture through fine-mesh strainer into bowl, pressing on lemon zest to extract liquid; discard lemon zest. Whisk 3/4 cup sugar, flour, baking powder, and salt in second bowl until combined. Add egg yolks, vanilla, lemon juice, and milk mixture and whisk until combined. (Batter will have consistency of milk.)
    3. Using stand mixer fitted with whisk, whip egg whites on medium-low speed until foamy, about 1 minute. Increase speed to medium-high and whip whites to soft, billowy mounds, about 1 minute. Gradually add remaining 1/4 cup sugar and whip until glossy, soft peaks form, 1 to 2 minutes.
    4. Whisk one-quarter of whites into batter to lighten. With rubber spatula, gently fold in remaining whites until no clumps or streaks remain. Ladle batter into ramekins (ramekins should be nearly full). Pour enough cold water into pan to come one-third of way up sides of ramekins. Bake until cake is set and pale golden brown and pudding layer registers 172 to 175 degrees at center, 50 to 55 minutes.
    5. Remove pan from oven and let ramekins stand in water bath for 10 minutes. Transfer ramekins to wire rack and let cool completely. Serve.

  5. Shinstigator March 26, 2014 at 8:34 pm - Reply

    This is budino. I’ve made this recipe for Meyer Lemon Budino ( and it was delicious. Maybe an Italian name makes it better.

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