BIG TONI’S ITALIAN KITCHEN

Sticky Toffee (Christmas Pudding)                 Dec 2017

Sticky Toffee (Christmas Pudding)

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Traditional Christmas pudding is not popular in our house. We serve it every year more out of tradition than taste, only the very few of our friends or family actually like it and even they often go for the smallest portion they can get away with.

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This year we decided to have something different and the pudding we decided to serve was the Sticky Toffee Pudding. Everyone in the family loves this pudding and as it dark brown very sweet and contains dates it could be almost a second cousin to the Christmas Pud.

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One other great thing about Sticky Toffee Pudding is the delicious stuff we like put on Christmas pud also works. Cream, Custard, Ice Cream and even Brandy butter can be splodged on top of the sticky sauce and all it does is make Sticky Toffee Pudding even better. If such a thing can be possible.

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This pudding also works all year round so you needn’t limit your enjoyment to Christmas. You can make this for any family get together.

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For 10 people

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  • 225g medjool dates
  • 180ml boiling water
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 175g self-raising flour, plus extra for greasing
  • 1 tsp. bicarbonate of soda 
  • 2 large or 3 smaller free range eggs
  • 100g butter, plus extra for greasing
  • 150g light muscovado sugar
  • 2 tbsp. black treacle
  • 100ml full cream milk 

            

For the toffee sauce:

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  • 175g light muscovado sugar
  • 100g butter 
  • 300ml double cream
  • 1 tbsp. black treacle
  • 1 tbsp. golden treacle

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How to make:

Pour the boiling water over the stoned chopped dates.

Leave for about 30 mins until cool and well soaked, and then squash them with a fork. Stir in the vanilla extract. 

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Butter and flour seven mini pudding tins, or one 9” 23cm round cake tin (each of the small tins will be about 200ml/7fl oz.) and sit them on a baking sheet.

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Heat oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4.

Now make the puddings. 

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Beat the butter and sugar together in a large bowl until slightly creamy Mix the flour and bicarbonate of soda together.

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Beat the eggs in a separate bowl. 

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Add the eggs a little at a time, beating well between additions. Beat in the black treacle then, using a large metal spoon, gently fold in one-third of the flour, then half the milk, being careful not to overbeat. 

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Repeat until all the flour and milk is used. Stir the soaked dates into the pudding batter. The mix will be like a soft, thick batter. 

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Spoon it evenly between the tins and bake for 20-25 mins, until raised and firm. 

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Or pour it into the large tin and bake for 40 mins until a strand of spaghetti pushed into the centre of the cake comes out clean.

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The Sticky Toffee sauce

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Put the sugar and butter for the sauce in a medium pan; bring to the boil over a medium heat, stirring all the time, until the sugar has completely dissolved. Stir in the treacle, turn up the heat slightly and let the mixture bubble away for 2-3 mins until it is a rich toffee colour, stirring occasionally to make sure it doesn’t burn. Take the pan off the heat and beat in the cream.

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Remove the puddings from the oven. Leave in the tins for a few mins, and then loosen them well from the sides of the tins before turning them out.  Or turn out the big pudding into a cooling rack.

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You can serve the puddings now with the sauce drizzled over, but they’ll be even stickier if left for a day or two coated in the sauce. 

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To do this, pour about half the sauce into one or two ovenproof serving dishes. Sit the upturned puddings on the sauce, then pour the rest of the sauce over them. Cover with a loose tent of foil so that the sauce doesn’t smudge (no need to chill).

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Or put the large pudding onto a serving dish and cover with half the sauce and keep the other half of the sauce in a jug until needed.

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When ready to serve, heat oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4. Warm the puddings/ pudding through, still covered, for 15-20 mins or until the sauce is bubbling. Serve them on their own, or with cream, ice cream, or custard.

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