An Anglophile through and through, I adore a freshly baked Sticky Toffee Pudding (made even more enjoyable by the British predilection for calling cakes "puddings"). My favorite recipe is one my mother tore out of a food magazine years ago and has used ever since, which produces a perfectly sweet and sticky cake that essentially transports me back to my days of living in London!
2 c. diced pitted dates
1 c. water
3/4 t. baking soda
1-3/4 c. all-purpose flour
1/2 t. baking powder
1/2 t. salt
1 c. packed dark brown sugar
3/4 c. unsalted room temperature butter
3 large eggs
2 t. vanilla extract
1-3/4 c. packed dark brown sugar
1-1/2 c. heavy whipping cream
3/4 stick unsalted butter
3 T. light corn syrup
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 13 x 9 x 2 baking dish with parchment; coat with cooking spray and lightly dust parchment with flour (to allow for easy release).
Combine dates and water in large heavy saucepan. Bring to boil and then reduce heat to simmer until dates are soft and most of the liquid is absorbed, about 5-7 minutes. Remove from heat and cool; add baking soda to saucepan and stir to mix (it will foam).
In a mixing bowl ,combine brown sugar and butter and beat until well blended. Add eggs, one at a time, and then mix in vanilla. Sift flour, baking powder, and salt in separate small mixing bowl. Add to creamed mixture in two additions. Stir in the date mixture and then pour into prepared pan.
Bake the cake for about 35 minutes until tester inserted into center comes out clean. While cake is baking, combine all sauce ingredients in heavy medium pan. Stirring occasionally, bring the sauce to a boil over medium heat and gently continue to boil for about 8 minutes until slightly reduced. Remove from heat.
Once the cake is done, remove the pan from the oven and poke holes with a skewer all over the top of the baked cake and pour about one cup of sauce over it. Return the cake to the oven and continue to bake until the caramel sauce bubbles -- about 5 more minutes (I put a baking sheet under my cake -- just to save on potential oven spills).
Once my cake has cooled on a rack for about an hour, I invert a rectangular platter on top and carefully flip out the cake and gently peel off the parchment paper. I prefer to serve my cake upside down so the poked holes don't show -- I then pour another 1/2 cup of the sauce on what is now the (flipped) top and quickly spread with an offset spatula to glaze the cake.
Best served warm or gently rewarmed with ice cream, whipped cream and heated sauce.
Sweater: Dylan Cropped Sweater in Baby Pink
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