Sticky Toffee Pudding and Seal
Resident chef Nigel Barden is here with today's mouth-watering 'Foodie Thursday' dish - Sticky Toffee Pudding! Plus, Simon has another one of your daft confessions for the collective to mull over. There's all the latest travel, sport and business updates and much marvellous music to boot.
Sticky toffee pudding with salted caramel
by Jason Atherton from Social Sweets (Absolute Press)
Prep time: 30 mins
Cooking time: 40 mins
In the dead of winter, nothing beats a good sticky toffee pudding at the end of a meal. It never fails to warm my cockles, particularly when enjoyed with a glass of PX sherry or port. For me, the caramel sauce should always be salted so as to offset the intense sweetness of the pudding.
65g unsalted butter, plus extra for greasing
200g pitted dried dates, roughly chopped
100g soft light brown sugar
100g caster sugar
2 large eggs, lightly beaten, at room temperature
200g plain flour
1½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp fine sea salt
Vanilla or Salted Ice cream, to serve
For the Salted Caramel
250ml double cream
1 tsp sea salt
110g liquid glucose
150g caster sugar
75g unsalted butter, diced
MethodPreheat the oven to 180°C/Fan 160C/Gas Mark 4. Grease a 900g loaf tin & line with baking parchment. Put the chopped dates & water into a small saucepan & bring to the boil. Remove from the heat & leave to cool slightly, then pour the mixture into a small food processor & blend until nicely puréed. Transfer to a bowl & leave to cool completely. Meanwhile, cream the butter with the brown & caster sugars in a large mixing bowl using an electric whisk. When the mixture is light & fluffy, gradually beat in the eggs. Sift the flour, baking powder & salt into the bowl & fold through. Finally, add the date purée & fold into the mixture until just incorporated (try not to over-mix the batter). Pour the mixture into the greased & lined tin & bake for 30–40 mins or until a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean. Cool for a few mins, then turn out the loaf on to a wire rack. Leave to cool a bit more while you make the salted caramel sauce. To make the caramel, put the cream & salt into a heavy-based saucepan & slowly bring to a simmer, then remove from the heat. Meanwhile, put the liquid glucose into another heavy-based saucepan with 50g of the sugar. Set over medium heat & let the sugar melt slowly. Once it has, add half of the remaining sugar & let it melt slowly over medium heat. Repeat with the last of the sugar. Once all the sugar has melted, increase the heat & let the syrup cook to an amber-coloured caramel. Take the pan off the heat & slowly stir in the hot cream. If there are any bits of hardened caramel, stir the mixture over medium heat until they have melted. Finally, stir in the butter & take the pan off the heat. (If making in advance, gently reheat the caramel before serving.) To serve, cut the warm sticky toffee pudding into slices & place one on each serving plate. Pour the salted caramel generously over the puddings & serve immediately, with ice cream on the side, if you wish.