I don’t consider myself to be much of a dessert person but if there is one item I simply can’t resist on any menu it is Sticky Toffee Pudding. Devilish sweet and decadent it puts me on a sugar high and a huge grin is plastered on my face for the rest of the day. It makes me happy! In restaurants I’ve had mediocre puddings as well as very good ones, and hands down the best store bought product is Cartmel’s. It was only a matter of time for me to start tinkering in the kitchen.
After some “failed” attempts (no flops, but the desserts lacked the “oomph” factor, I came across Ed Baines’ Best of British cookbook, which I’ll be reviewing in the next few weeks. There was no question whether I was going to prepare this recipe. It was a done deal.
One ingredient that I never cooked with before was black treacle. It had a familiar taste. Suddenly I remembered where I tasted something similar. It was back in the good old days when I made caramel and ended up burning the sugar. Yep, that’s right. Burnt sugar. It’s used mostly in puddings to give them dark and rich flavours.
The result was divine. It just is a perfect recipe.
Aah… at last… my life is complete.
Sticky Toffee Pudding
Preparation: 15 mins Cooking: 25 mins
- 100g (3½oz) chopped dates
- 2.5ml (½ tsp) vanilla extract
- 35g (1oz) softened butter, plus extra for greasing
- 65g (2oz) Demerara sugar
- 1 egg, beaten
- 5ml (1 tsp) black treacle
- 75g (2½oz) self-raising flour
- 2.5ml ((½ tsp) bicarbonate of soda
- 60ml (4 tbsp) milk
- 25g (1 oz) butter
- 75g (5 tbsp) dark soft brown sugar
- 120ml (4fl oz) double [heavy] cream
- 15ml (1 tbsp) black treacle
- Preheat the oven to 180°C/fan 160°C/gas 4.
- In a small bowl, soak the dates with the vanilla extract in 100ml () boiling water for 5 minutes, then drain and mash.
- Cream together the butter and sugar. Mix egg into the butter mixture, then beat in the treacle.
- Fold in one third of the flour and all the bicarbonate of soda. Add half the milk and repeat, continuously adding the milk and flour until it is all used. Then stir in the mashed dates. Spoon the pudding mixture into buttered ramekins and bake for 20 to 25 minutes.
- To make the sauce, put the butter, sugar and half the cream in a pan. Bring to the boil and simmer for about 5 minutes until the sugar has dissolved. Stir in the black treacle, turn up the heat and let the mixture simmer for 2 to 3 minutes, stir occasionally. Remove from the heat and stir in the remainder of the cream.
- To serve, turn the puddings out on to a plate. Pour the toffee sauce over the top.
- Serve with custard, vanilla ice cream or crème fraîche.