[A]: This quintessential English pudding (dessert) is famed to have its origins in one of the most beautiful part of the country – the Lake District. It supposedly comes from the Sharrow Bay Hotel on the banks of Lake Ullswater. This is quite a popular pudding in pubs up and down the country with slight variations in the recipe and presentation style.
I use the recipe from James Martin as it gives me the chance to play with a lot of complex sugars. The different sugars give it an unique taste that is usually difficult to produce in home baking. Whether you have a sweet tooth or not, I am sure you will appreciate the taste of this amazing creation.
Sticky toffee pudding is a very practical pudding to entertain guests at home. Both the toffee sauce and the sponge cake can be prepared in advance. The cake can also be easily frozen for later use. I usually prepare it a day in advance and hence on the day my guests arrive, there is one less dish to worry about for me.
The proportion in this blog is sufficient for 6-8 portions.
For the sticky sponge cake:
75 gm unsalted soft butter
175 gm dark brown demerara sugar
200 gm self-raising flour, plus extra for dusting
1 tbsp golden syrup
2 tbsp black treacle
2 free range eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
200 gm pitted chopped dried dates
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
For the rich toffee sauce:
150 gm dark soft sugar
150 gm butter
300 ml double cream
Pre-heat the oven to 190 °C. Grease a 23 cm round tin with removable bottom thoroughly with 25 gm butter, then lightly dust the inside of the tin with flour.
Blend the remaining butter and sugar together preferably in a food mixer. Slowly add the golden syrup, treacle, eggs and vanilla extract to the butter mixture and continue mixing. Reduce the speed of the mixer and then add the flour, preferably in two batches while mixing. Once all the ingredients are combined, turn off the mixer.
Place the chopped dates in a saucepan with 300 ml water and bring to the boil. Puree the water and date mixture and add the bicarbonate of soda. While it is still warm, quickly add the mixture to the egg mix. Once the mix is combined, pour into the prepared tin and bake for 40 minutes. Once done, the top should be firm to the touch.
Remove the pudding from the oven and allow to cool. Turn out of the tin and cut into squares.
To make the sauce, melt the butter and sugar together in a small pan, add the cream and bring to boil. Simmer for a few minutes until the sauce reaches the desired consistency.
To serve, re-heat the sponge in a microwave. Place onto a plate with lots of the sauce on top and a scoop of vanilla ice-cream.