With the change of season comfort food is high on the minds of many. These individual sticky date puddings are easy to make, delicious to eat and deliver all the richness you want to keep warm this winter.
200g dried dates, coarsely chopped
1 teaspoon bicarbonate soda
1 ¼ cups boiling water
60g butter, softened
1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1 cup self raising flour
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 ¼ cups firmly packed brown sugar
300ml pouring cream
First things first, preheat your oven to 180°c.
Place the chopped dates, bicarbonate soda and boiling water into a heatproof bowl. Let this mixture stand for 5 minutes. You will see it foam slightly and expand a bit in volume. This process softens the dates and helps give your puddings a rich fabulous texture. Pour the mixture into a blender jug or into a food processor bowl, either will work.
To the blender add butter and sugar and pulse 2-3 times. Then stop. Do not be tempted to have another go, you don’t won’t to over process the mixture. Add in the flour and eggs and pulse mixture until just combined. Again, resist the temptation to over process. To ensure it all blends evenly with little processing, you may need to scrape down the sides of your jug or bowl.
Divide mixture evenly between 12 holes of a lightly greased 1/3 cup muffin tray and bake for about 25 -30 minutes or until cooked when tested with a wooden skewer. Remove from oven and stand for 5 minutes before turning out onto a wire rack. Serve warm.
All puddings are better with sauce and butterscotch sauce works a treat with these sticky date puddings. If you are serving them immediately I suggest you make the sauce whilst the puddings are in the oven. Simply combine all ingredients in a saucepan and cook over a low heat, stirring frequently, until combined.
Serve the puddings warm with warmed butterscotch sauce and perhaps a dollop of cream or some vanilla ice cream.
I have made these the day ahead and re-heated them quite successfully, which makes them a no-fuss dessert for a winter dinner party.