STICKY TOFFEE SPONGE PUDDING: This famous Anglo-Irish dessert is more of a cake than a pudding. It is steamed like any other pudding, but you use a covering of foil rather than a traditional mold or pudding tin. This dessert is most famously served at Ballyvolane House, a country style mansion in Castleyons, County Cork by the proprietor of the home and chef of this inn/manor, Mrs. Greene. I have made this twice in the past years and it is delicious every time. I have posted a link with a picture of it because this dessert is quite beautiful. This is a perfect addition to any St.Patty's Day feast. http://www.irishcook.com/r
-1 1/2 cups (6 ounces) chopped dates
-1 cup water
-1 tsp baking soda
-4 Tbsp unsalted Kerrygold Irish butter (really, this butter makes a difference, don't skimp)
-3/4 cup sugar
-2 large eggs
-1/2 tsp vanilla extract
-1 1/2 cups self rising flour
-2 cups heavy (whipping) cream
-1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar
-2 Tbsp molasses or dark corn syrup
To make the Pudding: Preheat over to 350 degrees. Butter a 4-5 cup souffle dish or decorative pudding mold. In a saucepan over medium heat, combine dates, water, and bring them to a boil. Then, stir in baking soda. (The mixture will foam up.) Remove and let cool.
In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar with an electric mixer until pale and fluffy. Beat in the eggs and vanilla. Fold in the flour and date mixture. Pour into the prepared mold or dish, cover loosely with foil, and bake for 40-45 minutes, or until firm to the touch. Remove from the oven, transfer to a wire rack and let cool for ten minutes. While pudding is baking, make the toffee sauce:
In a medium sauce pan over medium heat, combine the cream, brown sugar, molasses/or/corn syrup. Cook for 8-10 minutes, or until the sauce is thickened.
To serve, invert the dish or mold onto a plate and pour some of the sauce over the top. Cut the pudding into slices and serve with the remaining sauce. Bain taitneamh as do bheile!