A couple months ago I had never heard of sticky toffee pudding. I first learned about this British treat when watching Unique Sweets. I think they called it sticky date pudding and I had trouble finding a decent recipe. Since the holidays kicked into full gear though, it is everywhere. Everywhere! It’s the new thing. And for good reason – it is a tasty and very unique treat. Not overly sweet, fruity, and a great change from all the typical holiday treats!
After searching recipes I finally decided on one from King Arthur since their recipe used figs. Its not terribly different and substituting dates to make it more traditional would be perfectly fine. But I love figs so this was the recipe for me.
You’ll notice that this doesn’t look like American pudding. It’s definitely a cake but called pudding across the pond. Pudding can also be savory, like Yorkshire pudding. Here pudding is more closely associated with pastry cream.
It’s pretty quick to make and easy too. The caramel sauce takes a while but is easy. I spiked both my cake and sauce, because, well, it’s the holidays, and why not? Figs go great with oranges so I added grand marnier to my cake and put a bit of dark rum in the caramel sauce. Have fun this holiday season!
Sticky Toffee Pudding
Adapted from King Arthur Flour
Yield: 6 to 8 individual cakes
- 1 cup chopped figs or chopped dried dates
- 1/3 cup + 3 TB boiling water
- 2 TB Grand Marnier or orange juice
- ¼ cup soft butter
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 3/4 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1 large egg
- 2 TB dark molasses
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 cup cake flour or AP Flour
- 1/4 tsp baking soda
- ½ cup sugar
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
- ¼ teaspoon salt; omit if using salted butter
- ¾ cup heavy cream
- 1 tsp dark rum, optional
1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Butter six ¾-cup silicone baking cups or oven-safe custard cups. Combine the figs and boiling water, and liqueur if using, and set aside.
2. Beat the 1/4 cup butter, brown sugar, salt, and baking powder until fluffy. Beat in the egg, then the molasses and vanilla, then the flour.
3. Purée the figs and water in a food processor or blender. Add the baking soda, and stir into the batter.
4. Pour into the prepared baking cups. Place molds on a baking sheet.
5. Bake the cakes for 18 to 22 minutes, until a cake springs back when lightly pressed in the center. Remove from the oven, and cool in the molds or cups.
6. Meanwhile, make the sauce. Cook the sugar, butter, and salt over medium heat until the mixture is a deep amber color; watch closely to prevent burning. It should take about 10 minutes.
7. Carefully mix in the cream. Cook the mixture until it’s thick enough to coat a spoon. This will take another 5 to 10 minutes. Add the rum, if using.
8. Unmold the cakes and serve with the sauce.