Both the sauce and the pudding can be made in advance and reheated before serving.
|1||cup dark brown sugar|
|¾||cup heavy cream|
|3||tablespoons light corn syrup|
1. In a medium saucepan, combine the brown sugar, cream, butter, and corn syrup.
2. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat to a simmer and cook for 6-8 minutes, stirring until slightly thickened. Keep warm.
|Butter (for the tins)|
|6||ounces pitted dates, chopped|
|1||tablespoon orange juice|
|½||teaspoon baking soda|
|¼||cup light brown sugar|
|¼||cup dark brown sugar|
|1||egg plus 1 egg yolk|
|1||teaspoon vanilla extract|
|¼||teaspoon baking powder|
|Whipped cream, ice cream, or clotted cream (for serving)|
1. Set the oven at 350 degrees. Lightly butter 4 1-cup muffin tins or ramekins. In a small saucepan, combine the chopped dates with the water and bring to a boil. Lower the heat to a simmer and cook 8 minutes, or until the liquid thickens and the dates are very soft. Stir in the orange juice and let cool to room temperature. Add the baking soda and stir to combine.
2. In an electric mixer, cream the butter and sugars at medium-high speed until light and fluffy. Lower the speed, add the egg and the yolk, and beat until combined. Add the vanilla extract and beat until combined.
3. Add the date mixture to the bowl and beat until combined.
4. In a small bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, and salt and stir to combine. Add to the bowl and mix just until incorporated. Do not overmix.
5. Remove the bowl from the mixer stand. Divide the batter among the muffin tins and bake for 25-30 minutes. Let cool for 6-8 minutes. Run the tip of a paring knife around the edge of each sticky toffee pudding to loosen it from the tin and carefully remove.
6. Place the puddings on a baking sheet, and using a kitchen skewer or knitting needle, poke about 6 holes in the top of each pudding. Generously spoon the toffee sauce onto the tops of the puddings, letting it seep into the holes.
7. Serve with whipped cream, ice cream, or clotted cream, with the remaining sauce on the side.
Gordon Hamersley can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org