Friday, June 26, 2009

Sticky Toffee Pudding And All Things Sweet

Of late, my blog seems to be peppered with desserts, chocolate, fudge.... What's happening to me? I am supposed to be off sugar completely. The more I want to be off big bad sugar, the more it shows up, insidiously finding its way into my life somehow. I wonder why? The further I run, the closer it gets. Until it is so so hard to say no and I give in.

Well now I say enough is enough and the next few posts are going to be only spicy SPICY all the way (let us see how long my good intentions last !!!).

Recently I was in Singapore on a short, much needed break, when friends of ours took us to the Cricket Club there. The food was amazing. As usual I had to order the dessert ( did you not read the above and figured out my weakness for anything sweet???). I had heard of but never tasted Sticky Toffee pudding. The name itself fascinated me. How delicious does it sound? Sticky Toffee Pudding. Say it a few times. Aloud. See I told you so. Makes you feel like immediately grabbing a spoon and digging in, doesn't it? My friends tease me all the time saying that I think of nothing but food and if I have to be honest here, I have to confess they are right. And in this case, can you blame me?

Well with a name like that I just had to order it. When it came to the table it looked so yummy. This steaming, tiny little perfectly baked brown cake sitting in a little puddle of gooey caramel. And all of it accompanied by a scoop of vanilla icecream. OOOooooohhhhhh. Just delicious.

And the taste.... it was really yummy. Words cannot do justice. I felt like doing a little jig right there. Jumping around with happiness... silly me. Well anyway. To cut a long story short, instead of jigging I just started digging {:)}.. At the end of the meal, I was simply sitting like a beached whale, unable to move but with a beaming face, totally satisfied.

Warning::: Read, make and EAT at your own risk. Please do not blame me if eating this results in an instant weight gain of 2 kgs or an immediate heart attack. ( I mean, have you looked at the ingredients?)

Now for the recipe....


1 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 cup deseeded dates
1 1/4 cups boiling water
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
3/4 cup white sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla

1/2 cup unsalted butter
1/2 cup cream
1 cup packed light brown sugar


Toffee Sauce:
Combine the butter, heavy cream and brown sugar in a saucepan; heat to boiling, stirring constantly.
Boil gently over medium low heat until mixture starts thickening. This will take about 6 minutes


Preheat the oven to 180 deg C and grease a 10-inch round or square baking dish.

Sift the flour and baking powder.

Chop the dates fine. Place in a small bowl and add the boiling water and baking soda; set aside. This will foam up. That's fine, it is meant to. When it cools down, belnd in the mixie till it is a smooth paste.

Beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the egg and vanilla; mix well until blended. Gently add the flour/baking powder mixture. Add the date paste to the batter and mix really well.

Pour into the prepared baking dish. Bake until pudding is set and firm on top, about 35 minutes.

Poke holes in the cake with a skewer. Pour 1/3 cup of the toffee sauce over it and leave it to soak.

Serve hot with the remaining toffee sauce and with either whipped cream or vanilla icecream.



Saturday, June 20, 2009

Chocolate Pudding Cake

Chocolate pudding is one dessert that has always been in great demand. This is one recipe that is most requested for whenever we have a pot luck. It is easy, quick and does not call for too many ingredients. To top it off, it is eggless which makes it a perfect dessert for most of our friends.
I am not sure where I got this recipe from but it has been in my handwritten recpe book for a number of years.
I have chronicled my family's addiction for chocolate many many times. This is one dessert that can be rustled up within minutes and will satiate the most demanding chocoholic. I promise you this. Just try it out once and you will be a fan forever. It has a nice fudgey cake like top with a saucey, custardy pudding bottom. It is like two desserts combined to give one heavenly result.
I think the only downside to this dessert is that it can give you a sugar high. My brother insists that it gives an instant hight which lasts the whole day!!!!. But my son did not agree. He feels it is just perfect the way it is.
So here goes with the recipe
1 cup all purpose flour
3/4 cup white sugar
1/4 cup cocoa
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup melted butter
1/2 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
1/4 cup cocoa
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 1/4 cup boiling hot water
Heat oven to 180 deg C.
Mix all the dry ingredients ( the flour, sugar, baking powder ad the salt) in a bowl.
Add the milk, melted butter and the vanilla essence and mix well togehter.
It will be a thickish batter.
Pour into a greased 9 inch square baking dish.
Mix the dry topping ingredients ( both the sugars and the cocoa) and sprinkle over the cake batter.
Finally pour the boiling water over it carefully without mixing or stirring at all.
Bake for 30 minutes.
Serve hot or cold preferably with vanilla icecream .