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Sticky date puddings with burnt caramel sauce

Ingredients

• 2 cups pitted dates, finely chopped
• 1 cup boiling water
• 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
• 125g butter, softened
• 3/4 cup brown sugar
• 3 eggs
• 1 cup self-raising flour
• 1/2 cup plain flour
• 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
• Double cream, to serve

Burnt caramel sauce

Method

• Preheat oven to 180C/160C fan-forced. Grease 8 holes of 2 x 6-hole, 3/4-cup-capacity Texas muffin pans. Line base of each hole with a round of baking paper.
• Combine dates, boiling water and bicarbonate of soda in a large heatproof bowl. Set aside for 10 minutes to soak.
• Using an electric mixer, beat butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition until just combined. Stir in combined flours, cinnamon and date mixture. Spoon evenly among prepared holes. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre of 1 pudding comes out clean. Set aside for 10 minutes to cool.
• Meanwhile, make Burnt caramel sauce Place caster sugar in a large, deep frying pan over medium-high heat. Cook, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, for 6 to 8 minutes until sugar melts and caramelises to a dark brown. Remove from heat. Carefully pour in the cream (mixture will spatter at this stage). Add salt and butter. Return to low heat. Cook, stirring, for 5 minutes or until toffee dissolves and sauce thickens slightly.
• Transfer puddings to serving plates. Drizzle with hot caramel sauce. Serve with double cream.

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