Early colonists brought with them to America a fondness for British “hasty pudding,” a dish made by boiling wheat flour in water or milk until it thickened into porridge. Since wheat flour was scarce in the New World, settlers adapted by using native cornmeal, dubbed “Indian flour,” and flavoring the resulting mush to be either sweet (with maple syrup or molasses) or savory (with drippings or salted meat). In time, Indian pudding evolved into a dish that was resoundingly sweet, with lots of molasses and additional ingredients such as butter, cinnamon, ginger, eggs, and sometimes even raisins or nuts. Recipes for Indian pudding began appearing in cookery books in the late 1700s. – From Yankee Magazine 

This is only of the first New England things I learned to make when I moved to Boston. I really love the texture of this dish and history behind it.  The recipe I have is an adaptation using local squash or pumpkin puree, very much a perfect Thanksgiving dish.


5 ounces                     Butter, Soft

6 ounces                    Light Brown Sugar

¼ cup                         Molasses

4 each                        Eggs

2 ½ cups                    Native Pumpkin or Squash Puree

½ cup                         Cake flour

3 tablespoons            Cornmeal

½ teaspoon                Baking Powder

½ teaspoon               Baking Soda

Pinch                          Salt

1 teaspoon                 Cinnamon

1/8 teaspoon             Nutmeg

¼ cup                         Heavy Cream 

  • Pumpkin/Squash puree – any variety works, remove seeds and set aside, roast in oven till soft and puree in vitamix till smooth
  • For tasting samples can bake in ½ hotel pans in water bath, scoop into disposable portion cups for serving 


  1. Cream butter and sugar
  2. Mix in molasses, eggs and pumpkin/squash puree
  3. Sift dries, scrape down and mix in flour and spices
  4. Scrape down and mix in heavy cream
  5. Scoop into dishes and bake on a sheet pan with water at 325 for 1 hour or until set

SERVINGS: 24 tasting portions