Hi guys! Welcome to my first recipe post! This week I’m making one of my absolutely favourite treats: Sticky Toffee Pudding! Even though I don’t have much of a sweet tooth, I could eat this all day. Especially with the caramel sauce that goes with it; it’s a tooth rotting, artery-hardening bonanza!
My love of baking stems from the love of my wee Nanny; she was an absolutely fantastic cook and baker with an array of other skills and she made us many wonderful treats over the years. So I guess it’s fair to say she passed her cooking/baking genes on to my sister and me, because we love doing both!
This recipe took me a few tries to get right, and I’ve tweaked amounts here and there to suit me such as not blending the mixture once the dates are added. Dates are deliciously sticky, sweet and are like little chunks of caramel dotted around the cake once it’s ready, and I feel that by blending the mixture you lose those little gooey chunks and some of the “stickiness”. However, if you’d prefer to blend them or even cut them a little bigger than I do, it shouldn’t affect the sponge mixture. I usually dice mine into quite small chunks, but sometimes I just cut them up roughly – it’s up to you!
The recipe itself is very simple and doesn’t call for a lot of ingredients, or indeed a large quantity of said ingredients. Here’s my recipe:
Pre-heat oven to 180C/350F/Gas mark 4. Line a baking tin with baking parchment or grease with butter.
For the sponge
175g of chopped dates (as big or as small as you like!)
250ml of boiling water
1 rounded teaspoon of baking soda/ bicarbonate of soda (I’ve used both, depending on ingredients to hand!)
50g salted butter
75g of demerara sugar
75g of molasses sugar
2 eggs (Free range if possible, for the chickens!)
175g self-raising flour
(Alternative: If I haven’t had self-raising flour to hand, I have used plain flour and put in a half teaspoon of baking soda to add extra lift to the sponge)
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
A pinch of salt
For the sticky toffee sauce
250ml double cream
80g of molasses sugar
80g salted butter
- Fill a measuring jug/bowl with the 250ml of boiling water and add the dates. Give them a stir and set aside for about 10 minutes. Whilst the dates are resting, mix together all the other ingredients for the sponge in a large mixing bowl. You can cook this in one big baking tin or in individual, smaller tins if you wish. Line said loaf/baking tin/ individual baking tins with baking parchment or grease with butter.
- Once the dates have rested for 10 minutes or so, pour the water and dates into the mixture and mix well. At this point, you may want to blitz the mixture in a food processor until nearly smooth, however I prefer to whisk/mix the mixture until almost smooth, leaving the dates large and visible in the mixture rather than blending it. It is down to your individual taste.
- Pour the mixture into your baking tin of choice and put in the oven for around 40 minutes. Cooking times can vary depending on type of oven (electric, fan, gas etc.) so at around the 35/40 minute mark, stick a knife in through the centre of the cake. If the knife comes out clean, your cake is done; if it has a coating of the mixture, it needs a while longer. Repeat every 5-10 minutes until knife is clean.
- Once the knife comes out clean, turn off the oven and mix together the sauce ingredients into a pan and stir whilst heating. After a few minutes you should a silky, caramel sauce. You can pour this over your cake as necessary, or:
- Optional: Once knife is clean, turn off your oven and pre-heat your grill whilst you are making the sauce. Your pudding probably has a slight dome or raised part in the centre of the cake; cut this piece off, or stab into it several times with your knife, and around the edges of the cake. Pour some of your sauce over your pudding (as much or as little as you’d like), place the removed piece back on, and put under the grill for a few moments. Your sauce will darken and thicken slightly, and the cuts into the cake means the sauce should distribute throughout. If you did not use all of your sauce, set some side in a container to cool and you can use with your cake later.
And voila! That’s my sticky toffee pudding. I hope you enjoy it!