Sticky Toffee Date Cake

From uchi.spoonuniversity.com, by Tiffany Chen
Sticky Toffee Date Cake

Photo by Tiffany Chen

Chicago winters call for warm, cozy nights in. What could be better than a warm and cozy dessert to accompany you? I know it has been pretty mild recently, but knowing this city the temperatures are going to plummet again very soon…

This sticky toffee date cake definitely tops my list of favorite desserts. It’s easily a crowd favorite; it’s gooey, soft, sticky and decadent. The dates add a touch of natural sweetness, which perfectly complement the buttery toffee sauce poured on top of the cake.

This is not a recipe for the faint of heart. It’s adapted from the one and only Ina Garten. So, if she calls for butter and sugar then you use that butter and sugar.

Ingredients:
1 pound dates, pitted and chopped
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 sticks butter, softened
3/4 cup granulated sugar
4 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
3 1/4 tablespoons baking powder

For the sauce:
2 sticks butter
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions:

1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease a 9 in. x 13 in. pan.

Photo by Tiffany Chen

Photo by Tiffany Chen

2. Place the dates in large saucepan with 3 1/2 cups cold water. Bring to a boil, stirring a little to break up the dates. Then leave to simmer for 1 minute before removing from the heat.

Photo by Tiffany Chen

Photo by Tiffany Chen

3. Stir in the baking soda (the mixture will bubble up).

Photo by Tiffany Chen

Photo by Tiffany Chen

4. Cream the butter and sugar together in a food mixer until pale and creamy.

Photo by Tiffany Chen

Photo by Tiffany Chen

5. Add the eggs, one at a time, occasionally scraping down the mixing bowl.

Photo by Tiffany Chen

Photo by Tiffany Chen

6. Add the vanilla extract followed by the flour and salt. Mix briefly. The dough will be lumpy.

Photo by Tiffany Chen

Photo by Tiffany Chen

7. Next, add the warm date mixture in 2 batches. Scrape down the sides of bowl in between. The dough will be watery, but don’t worry.

Photo by Tiffany Chen

Photo by Tiffany Chen

8. Finally, add the baking powder (this will bubble up also).

Photo by Tiffany Chen

Photo by Tiffany Chen

9. Pour the batter into the 9 in. x 13 in. pan. Bake for about 30 to 40 minutes. Test if it’s fully cooked with a small knife or toothpick; it should come out clean when the cake is done.

Photo by Tiffany Chen

Photo by Tiffany Chen

10. Meanwhile, make the sauce. Combine the butter, brown sugar, heavy cream and vanilla extract in a medium saucepan.

Photo by Tiffany Chen

Photo by Tiffany Chen

11. Bring to a boil and reduce to simmer gently for a minute or two until thickened and well-blended.

Photo by Tiffany Chen

Photo by Tiffany Chen

12. When the cake is done, poke little holes all over it with a toothpick or a fork. This will enable the sauce to be absorbed more easily. Pour the toffee sauce over the cake while it’s still warm and leave to soak for about 10 minutes. Cut and serve with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream.

More food porn ahead:

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