Mouthwatering Chocolate Bread & Fruit Pudding

This is a wholesome, tender, delicious, simply bursting with flavour, chocolate bread & fruit pudding.  Inspired by memories of my childhood in Malta, where Maltese bread pudding – known as ‘Pudina’ was an occasional treat, which I relished.  So here is a veganized and modified creation of this traditional Maltese puddin with a twist – a chocolate treat for your culinary pleasure.  Enjoy.

TIP :  For a decadent touch – serve with homemade cashew cream if you wish.

NOTE : Slightly dried up bread works well in this recipe


500 g bread of your choice – cut the hard crusts off, then weigh it, and cut the bread into 2” pieces (approx)
100 g moist, ready to eat figs, chopped (take hard bit from the top off)
200 g sultanas or raisins, or a mixture of both
1 L non-dairy milk – I used soya, as it’s rich and creamy – very apt for this pudding
150 g unsweetened desiccated (shredded) coconut
5 heaped Tbsp custard powder, or cornstarch
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 Tbsp brandy, or sherry (optional)
½ tsp nutmeg powder
5½ Tbsp vegan sugar of your choice (I used stevia)
confectioner’s sugar (icing sugar) for dusting on surface (optional)


  1.   Place your bread in a large basin, pour your milk over it, and mash it with your clean hands.
  2.   Next, add the custard powder, the fruit and the rest of the ingredients, and again mash with your hands.
  3.   Now wash your hands, and then re-mix with a wooden spoon until all has blended well.
  4.   You will need a shallow ovenproof dish (mine was 11½” x 8” x 2”), and also a larger dish, that you will use for the bain-marie    method.  Here comes the trick – grease the smaller dish very well with vegan margarine, or oil, and add some greaseproof    paper to the base of it so that it won’t stick. Now pour the mixture in, and even out the surface using a spatula.
  5.   Fill a quarter of the larger dish with hot boiling water, and then carefully place your dish with the mixture into the larger dish.  Then place in a pre-heated 400ºF (200ºC) oven for 30-45 minutes, depending on your oven. In any case, bring it out of the oven to check on it after half an hour – poke a sharp knife in from the top, and if it comes out clean, it’s done. The surface should have hardened, and the inside should have solidified, but still be moist (it’s a pudding, not a cake after all).  Turn the oven off, and then allow the pudding to cool down completely, before covering it (to retain its moisture), and refrigerating.
  6.   Dust with powdered sugar before serving if you wish. Enjoy !

All recipes and content © Miriam Sorrell 2010

These are free recipes for your pleasure – all we ask in return is that you take a few moments to leave us a constructive comment !

suitable for vegans, vegetarians and meat-eaters alike


  1. Thank you; this looks delicious! I’m craving stodgy, comforting food at the moment so will definitely be making this. 🙂

  2. Hi there Kate, thanks so much for dropping by here with your comment. I sincerely hope that you make and enjoy this recipe as it will not disappoint – particularly if you are craving comfort food – good thing is it’s rather wholesome and healthy. Best wishes your way and I look forward to your future comments on my blog.

  3. Thank you for this lovely dessert. It resembles our Maltese Bread pudding. Lovely in winter with tea in the afternoon after school!!!! My childhood days!

  4. Hi there Carmen and welcome here. Yes, as I mentioned in the intro it is in part inspired by the Maltese pudding – this is a healthier version without the milk and eggs and is therefore cholesterol free and made with wholewheat flour. The taste is much better, richer and more chocolatey. I love the coconut in the old pudding and have of course included it here. Hope you make and enjoy it. Best wishes your way in the meantime !

  5. I love this. Mother used to make it when she had some surplus bread but she used the crust too. She didn’t use any eggs however. I’ll try this one asap.

  6. Hi there Joe. Good to hear that you will be making my pudina – it may be a little different to your mum’s one, but the idea is pretty much the same. Let me know how it goes and best wishes your way in the meantime !

  7. I absolutely love all your recipes. I hope I don’t have any trouble converting anything. But I will be trying them. Thanks so much for sharing, it is greatly appreciated

  8. Hi there Peggy and thanks for your kind words. I will be looking forward to your comments on my blog. Best wishes your way in the meantime.

  9. Food Lovers International

    YUM! Sounds Heavenly. I think the sherry or brandy should be mandatory 😉 Can’t wait to try this, thank you xox

  10. FLI I would love for you to try this – and agreed as far as the alcohol in this is concerned. I don’t drink it myself, but I love it in sweets, isn’t that odd ! Do let me know how it goes as and when. Best wishes your way !

  11. Hi Miriam A couple of days ago I did the pudina. I give it time to mature. It was EXCELLENT and that brandy (although I ain’t a friend of any alcohol) gave it an out-of this-world taste. 10Q. Four months to go! Guess what???? LOL.

  12. Hi there Joe and thanks for coming back with your feedback ! I am delighted you enjoyed it. If you are referring to my book, it will be out in May/June. I do hope you make and enjoy my other recipes and if you wish to join our new monthly newsletter just say the word and I will add you ! Best to you !

  13. Guessed right…so it is receding :).
    CONGRATS for your success. You deserve it you know. May more be on the way.
    Oh yes pl include me name for the newsletter. Happy Christmas…..

  14. Thanks for extending your best wishes Joe and have added you to our newsletter. Happy Christmas to you too !

  15. Guess what Miriam? I am having the pudina with custard at every meal. It is a make believe Christmas pudding ha ha (and tastes so too!)

  16. Hi Joe, I am happy that you are enjoying the pudina with every meal – something indeed festive about it. Best wishes your way !

  17. This looks so easy and yummy, will have to give it a go!

  18. Hi Jas and thanks for dropping by here with your comment. Do let me know how it goes as and when !

  19. Thankyou for sharing this recipe. I am Maltese too and have always wanted to make Puddina but couldn’t find a vegan version until now!

  20. Hi there Amanda and welcome here. I myself am not Maltese (I believe a very distant relative may have been), but enjoy Maltese cuisine and the culture immensely and have done so for some years now. I hope you make and enjoy this and let me know how it goes as and when. Meantime, I wish you and your loved ones a very Happy New Year 2013.

  21. hi miriam, i lOVE your website, thank you, and a question, i wonder how you find using the stevia to bake with. i recently switched from other sweeteners as i got reactions, and dont do suger very well, but i do use stevia in coffee. i would love to use this in baking as well. i have my own stevia plant, or can use granulated. thank you

  22. Silvia Hi there, here is a link that will help you with the information you may need regarding stevia and baking, I hope it helps you. Cheers ! 🙂

  23. Do you soak the fruit to soften?

  24. Hi Vicki, yes you can do if you wish.


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