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Sticky. Toffee. Pudding.

Sticky Toffee Pudding

I have no idea where this particular version of the recipe originated from, other than my niece, though it’s similar to many sticky toffee pudding formulae out there on the Interweb. In any event, I ended up tweaking it slightly myself anyway, like putting kahlúa in the toffee sauce. I did like that particular tweak very much…

In terms of general approach, Jenni [1] would be proud of me for recognising the cake bit as an example of the creaming method [2] and also, I think, for adding a touch of salt where there was none.

The Summary:

  • Makes around 8 portions of sticky toffeeness & takes approx. 35 min to prep + 25 min to bake
For the cakey bit:
  • 200g plain flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 0.5 tsp salt
  • 150g pitted dates
  • 250ml water
  • 2 tblsp golden syrup
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 75g unsalted butter
  • 125g light muscovado sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
For the sauce bit:
  • 125g unsalted butter
  • 125g dark muscovado sugar
  • pinch of salt
  • 180ml double cream
  • 50 ml kahlúa (optional but lovely)
You’ll also need:
  • Baking tin – mine was about 26cm by 18cm and about 3cm deep. I feared the mixture might overflow the confines of this tin but it contained the mixture perfectly.
The Steps:
  • Preheat the oven to 180C and grease the baking tin well.
  • Whisk the flour, baking powder and salt together well and set aside.
  • Ensure all stones are removed from the dates, then chop them and place in a small saucepan with the water. Bring to a boil over a medium-high heat, then reduce the heat and simmer for 5 minutes.
  • Remove from the heat and add the golden syrup. Stir well to combine.
  • Add the bicarbonate of soda – the mixture will froth up.
  • Cream the butter until light and fluffy, then add the light muscovado sugar and cream together until light and fluffy.
  • Add the eggs one at a time and beat well to combine, then stir in the vanilla.
  • Add half the flour and mix to combine. Then add the date mixture in 2 lots, stir to combine and finally mix in the rest of the flour until just combined.
  • Scrape the mixture into the tin and bake for about 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the centre comes out fairly clean.
  • To make the sauce, place the butter, dark muscovado sugar and salt in a small saucepan over a medium heat, stirring often as the butter melts and the sugar dissolves.
  • Add the cream and (if using) kahlua, bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer for about 5 minutes, stirring continuously and allowing the sauce to reduce and thicken.
  • Serve warm slices of the pudding, spooned over with the warm toffee sauce.
The Variations:
  • Try stirring some kahlúa-soaked golden sultanas into the batter (as per the recipe for Bahlúa Bread [3]).
  • You could try using molasses or dark treacle instead of golden syrup in the cake. Different taste but equally nice I would think.
  • I imagine that some ginger would work well in this – say about a teaspoon of dried ginger added to the flour or (as David Lebovitz [4] did in his version), some chopped crystallised ginger stirred into the cake batter at the end.