This pudding is so delicious it would be rude of me not to share it with you. It’s also really simple to make, and very comforting on a cold autumnal day.

sticky toffee puddingI cannot claim this recipe as my own.  I am indebted to David Lebovitz for sharing his version of the pudding, and Mani Niall, from whose book Sweet, this recipe originates.

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Toffee Sauce Ingredients

500ml double cream
90g dark brown sugar (such as Muscovado)
2 1/2 tablespoons golden syrup
pinch of salt (I always use Maldon Salt)

Pudding Ingredients

180g pitted dates, chopped
250ml water
1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
175g plain flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
55g  butter
150g granulated sugar
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

To serve

Good quality vanilla ice cream (I prefer Haagen Daz, but feel free to chose your favourite)

Before you start

Preheat the oven to 190C (350F)  and butter an 8 1/2-inch (24cm) baking dish (it needs to be quite deep.

Make the toffee sauce

  1. Bring the cream, sugar, golden syrup and salt to a boil in a medium saucepan, stirring often to melt the sugar.
  2. Lower heat and simmer, stirring constantly for about 5 minutes, until the mixture is thick and coats the spoon. Pour half the sauce into the prepared soufflé dish and place the dish in the freezer, and reserve the other half for serving.  (I completely forgot to do this step until the very last minute…or last 5 minutes…and my pudding turned out fine.  It does make it easier to put the pudding mix into the dish if the toffee has set, otherwise you have sinking pudding batter!)

Make the pudding

  1. In a medium saucepan, heat the dates and water. Once the water begins to boil, remove from heat and stir in the baking soda.
  2. In a small bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt.
  3. In a large mixing bowl beat the butter and granulated sugar until light and fluffy. I used my Kmix for this but you could do it with a hand mixer, or a good old fashioned wooden spoon, if you’re not as lazy as I am.
  4. Gradually beat in the eggs, then the vanilla. (Don’t be alarmed if the mixture looks a bit curdled. It’ll be ok.  I promise.) 
  5. Stir in half of the flour mixture, then the date mixture, then add the remaining flour mixture until just mixed. It will be a loose batter at this stage…be careful not to over beat it.  We’re getting all the ingredients together…not beating the stuffing out of it!
  6. Remove the baking dish from the freezer and scrape the batter onto the top of the toffee sauce, then bake for 50 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the centre comes out with moist crumbs attached.
  7. Try desperately hard to let the pudding cool slightly before serving with vanilla ice cream.  That toffee sauce is going to be very hot!
  8. Enjoy and bask in the glory of the compliments from your fellow diners (if you’re kind enough to share it with them).

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