Sunday, March 04, 2007

Sunday Lunch and Dark Toffee Pudding

We had a proper house full of lovely friends today - Jamie and Sarah, Jonny and Lilla and five boys! I spent the morning cooking a traditional Sunday roast with The Archers on while Rob took Scrap to the furniture fair at Dulwich College then on to the park to have a thrash around on his scooter.

As usual, I wasn’t actually interested in my lunch by the time we all sat down to eat but I did enjoy my pudding.

Dark Toffee Pudding
Serves 8
175g stoned dates, chopped
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
55g butter, room temperature
175g caster sugar
2 eggs, beaten
175g self-raising flour
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
sticky toffee sauce
150g dark muscovado sugar
1 small, 148ml carton double cream
100g butter
½ teaspoon vanilla extract

Put the dates in a pan with 300ml of water and bring to the boil. Simmer for 2 minutes then turn off the heat. Stir in the bicarb and leave to cool. Puree with a hand blender until smooth or leave as it is if you prefer more texture.

Preheat the oven to 180C / gas 4. Beat together the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy then beat in the eggs. Stir in the date mixture, flour and vanilla then pour into an ovenproof dish. Bake for 30 minutes or so until firm.

Meanwhile, place the dark sugar, cream, butter and vanilla extract in a small pan and gently bring to the boil. Simmer for a couple of minutes until thickened.

Pour the toffee sauce over the pudding and leave for at least 30 minutes but ideally a few hours. To reheat, cover with foil and warm through in the oven. Serve with custard.

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