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Sunday, 29 September 2013

Sticky Toffee Pudding

My winter checklist: 

Trees turning? Check.  
Occasional central heating required? Check.  
Cats staying in longer? Check.
Craving for stodgy food? Check.
Shower dial turned another notch towards hot? Check.
Winter coat out of loft? Check.

These are my signs that winter is on its way.  

Although spring and summer are my favourite times of year, winter does mean my birthday, bonfire night and of course Christmas.  It is also the time of year for warming stews, midweek roasts and stodgy puddings - and weight gain if your not careful.



Sticky toffee pudding is one of my all time favourite winter treats.  I have never attempted to make one before, normally happy to just purchase a good quality one from a supermarket, but I came across this recipe by Simon Hopkinson and I had to try it. 

Whizzed up in the food processor and baked in the oven this treat is perfect to eat after a Sunday roast, simply put it in the oven while you are eating the main.  I found molasses sugar in the supermarket and demerara is very easy to get hold of.  Although sticky and sweet the sponge is especially light and delicate, served with simple vanilla ice cream I could very happily get fat on this.



Sticky Toffee Pudding
by Simon Hopkinson

For the sponge
175g dates
275ml hot water
1 tsp bicarb soda
50g soft salted butter
75g demerara sugar
75g molasses sugar
2 large eggs
175g self-rasing wholemeal flour (or self-rasing plain)
1 tsp vanilla extract

For the sticky toffee sauce
250ml double cream
80g butter
80g molasses sugar

Start by pouring the boiling water over the dates and setting aside to soften for 30 minutes.


Preheat the oven to 180C.

Place the flour, sugars and bicarb in a food processor and whizzing for 30 seconds or so until the sugar has broken up and fully mixed.


Add the eggs, butter, vanilla and date/water mixture.  Whizz until the dates are chopped but the whole mix isn't completely smooth.  Expect a very liquid mixture.

 

Pour in to a well greased dish and bake for 40 minutes.

 

To make the toffee sauce, place all the ingredients in a small saucepan and bring to the boil whisking all the time.  Should only take about 5 minutes.  

 

Pour over the baked sponge and return to the oven for 10 minutes, until bubbling and sticky.


Enjoy with ice cream.