Saturday, December 26, 2015

Sticky Toffee Pudding

Do you have any foods tied to specific memories? Or memories that revolve around excellent meals? One particular memory I have is of a little restaurant in Scotland. My husband and I went on a tour of the British Isles in 2013 and stopped here for a wonderful dinner.

Now, one doesn't usually go to Scotland for the food, as Mike Meyers put so well: "I think most Scottish cuisine is based on a dare."

But while the haggis was only okay, the sticky toffee pudding was amazing! I thought I might have a picture of it, but apparently I devoured it too quickly! I do remember that it was thick and moist and full of caramel flavor.

This year, some friends invited us over for dinner on Christmas Eve, and I decided to attempt to recreate the pudding I remembered. This is a great party cake, so give it a try next time you get together with friends and family. It is sure to please the whole crowd!

The key ingredient in making this toffee pudding "sticky" is the dates. I didn't understand why until I started chopping them up.

You know that stickiness you get on your fingers when you grab a handful of raisins? Multiply that by about ten and you might understand the stickiness of dates. You can apparently use fresh or dried dates, but buying a bag of 8 oz dried and pitted dates made it so easy!

In my memory from Scotland, I had no idea there was anything in the cake except gooey caramel flavor, so I decided to chop my dates in the food processor to make them extra small. It worked pretty well, though I might chop them even smaller next time.

You then pour 1 1/2 cup boiling water over the dates along with a teaspoon of baking soda. It will foam as it soaks.

Then I hit a major problem! I had somehow let myself run out of flour and I only had 1 cup in the house! How did I let that happen? I debated borrowing a cup from my neighbor, but after realizing that I was also low on eggs, I decided to make a quick run to the store while the dates soaked.

Whew, that's better. In hindsight, I could probably have been fine with just 1 cup and had a denser cake, but oh well.

Cream well your butter and sugar, then add the eggs, the combined dry ingredients, and the entire date mixture. Mix gently.

I must admit that the batter did not look appetizing and like I wanted to lick the bowl, but I popped it in the oven anyway.

Meanwhile, make your caramel sauce. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to cook 4 minutes. Allow to cool while the cake continues to bake.

As soon as the cake comes out (and is nice and springy), poke holes in it with a skewer or fork, then pour about half the caramel sauce over it.

Okay, that looks yummy! Allow the cake to completely cool and soak up the sauce, then serve topped with the remaining caramel and whipped cream or ice cream. Yum yum!

Sticky Toffee Pudding

Makes: About 12 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes


  • 8 oz dates
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 1/2 cups boiling water

  • 1 stick butter
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs, room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt

  • 1 stick butter
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup heavy cream


  1. Finely chop dates by pulsing in food processor. Combine with baking soda.
  2. Bring 1 1/2 cups water to boil. Pour boiling water over dates and allow to soak for 30 minutes.
  3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease bottom and sides of 9x13 pan.
  4. Cream butter and sugar on high speed until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes.
  5. Reduce speed and add eggs one at a time.
  6. Whisk dry ingredients, then slowly fold into batter. Fold in date mixture until just combined.
  7. Pour batter into prepared pan and bake for 20-30 minutes until cake springs back when touched with a finger.
  8. While cake is baking, combine sauce ingredients in saucepan and bring to boil over high heat. Reduce heat to simmer and cook 4 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool.
  9. Immediately after taking cake from the oven, poke holes about 1 inch apart with a skewer or fork.
  10. Pour half of the caramel sauce over the cake and allow to soak as the cake cools.
  11. Serve with remaining sauce and either whipped cream or ice cream.

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  1. Yum I hope you make that next time we visit!

  2. oh yes, pass me some please!! this sticky toffee pudding looks so good! nom nom nom :) thanks for the recipe! I would be glad to pop over too if you make it again lol

    1. Ha ha, you're welcome to come; it made plenty! Thanks for visiting and I hope you get to try it yourself sometime.

  3. Oh now that sounds delicious!!! I will have to give it a try- though I admit, coming to your blog and seeing all those excel spreadsheets did frighten me a bit,I stayed and am glad I did!!
    Coming to check out your blog from Mostly Bloggings linky party.

    1. Hi Vicki! I'm sorry the spreadsheets scared you, but I hope you'll give them a try. I want to make them as easy as possible and have tutorials to help those who are new. But if all fails, enjoy the recipes!

      Thanks for visiting!

  4. Replies
    1. It was very yummy! I hope you get a chance to try it. Thanks for visiting!

  5. Your pudding looks wonderful. I always make this for Christmas and once more during the year. Our recipes are very similar. The only difference is you poke holes in it for the sauce to soak in. I must try that next time I make it. Thanks for sharing.

    Happy New Year,

    1. Hi Sandi. I'm glad to find someone else who knows this recipe! It is definitely one of the less common cakes. I hope that poking holes works for you next time you make it and it tastes even better than before. Thanks for stopping by!

  6. Okay, I'm hungry now!

    I'm waiting for my husband to start cooking dinner. After seeing this, I thought about running to the store for ingredients to bake while he cooks.

    Thanks for joining Share Your Cup.

    1. Wow, I wish my husband would cook dinner while I baked! That sounds fantastic! Either way, I hope you get to try it. Enjoy and thanks for visiting!

  7. That looks delicious! Thanks for sharing at Home Sweet Home!

  8. I am featuring this too Megan. I just was reviewing my features and had no idea you did this post and the Excel spreadsheet post. I picked them both for features this week. You do great work! Welcome to blogging!

  9. I am featuring this too Megan. I just was reviewing my features and had no idea you did this post and the Excel spreadsheet post. I picked them both for features this week. You do great work! Welcome to blogging!

    1. I'm so excited to get a double feature! I know it might seem odd that the girl who cooks scrumptious desserts also spends her time playing in Excel, but that's what I do! Thank you so much for visiting and both the features!

  10. Love food that evokes good memories!
    Thanks for sharing at Funtastic Friday!

    1. Thanks, Chris. Yes, it is always fun when food helps you remember good times. Thanks for visiting!