Why hello! Long time no see! I can’t believe it’s been nearly 3 weeks since I last logged into my blog. Oops! It’s now December and it’s just a snowball en route to Christmas so things are ker-razy in Candy Land as I desperately try and get things done so I can have some time off over the holidays. I’ve been MIA in all areas of my life and I’m only two whisks away from losing my mind. Cabin fever peeps! Help me!
So just a quick a post for today to check in and say I’m still alive! I haven’t really been cavorting in the kitchen at all apart from the odd tryst to satiate a craving. And though it seems like an odd thing for the start of summer, I just can’t stop yearning for hot puddings and heavy dinners. So for this visit and to soothe a weary soul – a simple Chocolate Date Pudding with Bourbon Toffee Sauce if you please.
Warm, sweet and sticky… just what the doctor ordered.
Chocolate Date Pudding with Bourbon Toffee Sauce
200g Medjool dates*
175g dark brown sugar
100g salted butter, chopped and softened
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 Tbl (15ml) bourbon (optional. Replace with cooled espresso coffee if you wish)
3 large eggs
150g plain flour
50g Dutch-processed cocoa powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
* Medjool dates have a more sweeter toffee-like flavour which is perfect to stand up to the chocolate flavour in the puddings. But obviously if these are unavailable, any standard dates are fine to use.
Bourbon Toffee Sauce
100g dark brown sugar
250ml thickened cream
15ml (half a shot) of bourbon (adjust to taste)
Note – the toffee sauce in these photos are a lot lighter than it should be because (silly me) I ran out of dark brown sugar so I had to use light brown. With dark sugar, the sauce would look a lot better. My bad!
Preheat oven to 190°C. Butter and line 8 x 200ml pudding basins or ramekins.
Place the dates, water and sugar in a pan and bring to a boil while stirring to dissolve the sugar. Lower the heat immediately and simmer gently for 10 minutes or until the dates are soft. Leave to cool completely.
Place the cooled date mixture (plus the liquid) in a food processor along with the butter, vanilla extract, bourbon/coffee and eggs and blend until combined. You can process the dates until smooth if you wish but I prefer leaving some date chunks just for texture in the pudding.
Scrape the mixture into a large mixing bowl. In two batches, sift the flour, cocoa, baking soda and baking powder into the mixture and fold gently until combined.
Divide amongst the pudding basins and bake for 20-25 minutes or until the skewer emerges fairly cleanly when inserted into the centre.
Remove from oven and allow to rest. In the meantime, place all the ingredients for the toffee sauce in a pan and simmer, stirring until sugar has dissolved and the sauce is smooth. Keep warm and stir every now and then to prevent a skin from forming.
When cool enough to handle, invert puddings onto plates and removing baking paper. Serve warm with toffee sauce and some pouring/double cream if you wish.
Adapted from a Gordon Ramsay recipe