The Yorkshire Bake Off #2: Sticky Toffee Puddings

Recipe Challenge number two for the Yorkshire Bake Off Challenge baking recipes from this series of the Great British Bake Off and from the How To Turn Everyday Bakes Into Showstoppers book was the Mini Sticky Toffee Puddings as made by Brendan in the “bloodbath” episode a couple of weeks back.

I genuinely thought that Sticky Toffee pudding would be popular with bakers wanting to have a go at making it for a Sunday lunch pudding on an Autumnal day but would be proved wrong. Not one single entry was to be sent in.  I was so surprised as the online bake off is not meant to be a serious competition like the GBBO, it is meant to be fun and baking just for the sake of it. Although I bake cakes, biscuits and cookies professionally and make them well, the same could not be said of my bread, pies, tarts or patisserie!

So, not to be defeated, I still baked the Sticky Toffee Puddings for our family Sunday lunch and decided to write a blog post about them.  I must admit I was feeling incredibly nervous as I have only ever baked Sticky Toffee Pudding as a big sponge traybake affair, not as dainty individual puddings.  At least I could try out my Silverwood moulds which had been in my baking tray drawer for 2 years completely unused.

The recipe which Brendan baked on the show is also on the BBC Good Food website

I followed the nearly identical recipe as shown in the Showstoppers book, as I couldn’t be bothered to print off the recipe.  The recipe quantities differ slightly though.

First, I greased the Silverwood moulds, sadly the pack only had 4 of them and the recipe made 8! I had to make up the difference by using a couple of ceramic ramekins which usually end up having olives in them at dinner parties, not puddings!  This wasn’t a problem though, even though the ramekins ended up causing me to only make 6 puds, not 8.  This fitted in well with our family though.

Once this was done I started on preparing the Medjool dates, by destoning and chopping them into small chunks. They were then soaked in boiling water containing bicarbonate of soda. I left them to cool down, then continued with the sponge part of the puddings.  I creamed butter and dark brown muscovado sugar together, then added an egg, followed by flour and baking powder.  The mixture was poured into the tins, to about  two thirds of the way up the dish and was baked in the oven for about 20 minutes.

I don’t know why this is but I find whenever I have to start baking, there is always a distraction or a disturbance!  I got sidetracked to go and hang some washing out and as I did that I forgot to set the timer while the puddings were in the oven!  When I came back inside, I couldn’t for the life of me remember when I had put the puddings in!  Luckily, with trial and error they were ok and sprang back when I touched the surface of them!

As the sponges were cooling on a rack before turning out, I set to making the toffee sauce.  I noticed that Brendan had put two lovely additions into the sauce- a tablespoon of dark rum and two tablespoonfuls of syrup from a jar of stem ginger. I had bought a small bottle of rum for this pudding which I noticed my hubby eyeing up as he was looking at the spirits bottles on the tray!  I said “Hands Off!”, last time, he polished off my Christmas Cake brandy so I had to go out and buy more.  I was delighted about the ginger syrup, I love stem ginger and buy it in for making my stem ginger cookies for my customers.  This recipe didn’t have the actual ginger in it, but I bet instead of dates you could bake stem ginger chunks into the sponge instead.

To make the sauce, I melted some butter in a saucepan, whisked dark brown muscovado sugar into the mixture and added some double cream, the rum and the ginger syrup. It bubbled away gently until it was ready to serve.

We were absolutely over the moon with the delicious puddings. The taste of the rum and ginger was subtle and not at all overpowering and the sponges turned out of the moulds easily and carefully.  The sauce was the right consistency and went perfectly with some vanilla ice cream.  Everyone polished off their pudding, except for my son who went off to the loo halfway through the meal!  While he was in the toilet our black labrador came to the table, jumped up and grabbed at the pudding!  It was quickly taken away and he got into trouble, but it was lovely to know that everyone enjoyed it!
Happy Baking!
Love Sam xx

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