Ultimate Sticky Toffee Pudding

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      Ultimate Sticky Toffee Pudding

      For the Pudding:
      8 oz cooking dates, finely chopped small
      3/4 cup boiling water
      1 tsp vanilla extract
      3/4 cup self-raising flour
      1 tsp baking soda
      2 eggs, lightly beaten
      3 tbs butter, softened, plus extra for greasing
      1/2 cup sugar, heaping
      2 tbs molasses
      7 tbs milk

      For the Sauce:
      3/4 cup dark brown sugar
      4 tbs butter, cut into pieces
      1 cup whipping cream
      1 tbs molasses

      Preheat the oven to 325°.

      Butter 6 individual pudding tins or use an 8-by-8-by-2 1/2-inch square baking dish and dust lightly with flour.

      Put the chopped dates into a large glass bowl, cover with boiling water, leave for 20 min to swell and soften. Once soft, add the vanilla extract.

      Sift the flour and baking soda into a large baking bowl.

      In another baking bowl, cream the butter and sugar together until light and creamy.

      Little by little, add the beaten eggs, mixing really well between additions. Add the molasses and beat well.

      Using a large metal spoon carefully fold in one-third of the flour, then carefully stir in one-third of the milk. Repeat until all the flour and milk is used up.

      Add the chopped dates (including any liquid in the bowl) and stir gently. The pudding mixture will resemble a thick batter.

      Divide the mixture between the six pudding tins and place on a baking sheet.

      Bake in the preheated oven for 20 to 25 min for individual puddings or 45 to 50 min for the large square. The cake should be raised and firm to the touch. If not, cook a little longer, but take care not to burn. Once ready, remove from the oven and leave to cool in the tins for 10 min before turning out.

      Make the Sauce

      Over medium heat, melt the butter, sugar and half the cream in a saucepan. Raise the heat slightly and bring to the boil stirring constantly until all the sugar has dissolved.

      Add the molasses and allow the sauce to bubble for 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and leave to cool for 1 min then stir in the remaining cream.

      Place a portion of the cake onto warm individual serving dishes, and drizzle generous amounts of sauce over.

      Serve with or ice cream.

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