Friday, September 11, 2015
Cook's Illustrated's Sticky Toffee Pudding
1 c cream
1 c half and half
1/2 c sugar
1 t vanilla
4 egg yolks
1/2 t cornstarch (this isn't required, but makes it a little thicker)
pinch of salt
Bring the cream and half and half to a simmer, and keep it at medium-low after reaching a simmer.
In a medium bowl, beat together the egg yolks, sugar, cornstarch and salt. Slowly temper the eggs with the hot cream, then add the egg mixture to the pan and stir constantly until thickened a little and the temperature of the cream is 180 degrees.
Pour the creme anglaise through a fine mesh sieve, stir in the vanilla, and refrigerate until chilled, at least 2 hours.
butter, flour and parchment for the ramekins
1 1/4 c flour
1/2 t baking powder
1/2 t salt
14 Medjool dates, pitted and chopped
1/2 t baking soda
3/4 c water
3/4 c packed brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 1/2 t vanilla
4 T unsalted butter, melted
8 T unsalted butter
1 c packed brown sugar
2/3 c heavy cream
1 T rum (optional, use rum flavoring or more vanilla if desired)
Preheat the oven to 350. Butter and flour the ramekins, then cut a parchment round to fit the bottom of each ramekin. Place a kitchen towel in a large roasting pan, place the ramekins on top, and bring some water to a boil.
Whisk the flour, baking powder, and salt together and set aside.
Combine the water, half the dates, and the baking soda together and set aside to soften, about 5 minutes. Remove the dates and reserve the liquid.
Process the remaining dates in a food processor with the brown sugar until just blended. Add in the reserved soaking liquid, the eggs, and vanilla and process until smooth. With the food processor running, pour in the melted butter. Transfer the mixture to a bowl and add in the rest of the dates.
Gently fold in the flour mixture until just combined, divide the batter between the ramekins, and pour the boiling water into the roasting pan, with the towel there to keep things moist and securely in place. Cover the roasting pan tightly with aluminum foil, then bake about 40 minutes.
While the cakes bake, melt the butter for the toffee sauce in a pan, whisk in the brown sugar until smooth, about 3-4 minutes, then stir in the cream and rum. When well combined, set aside and cover to keep warm.
When the cakes are done, transfer them to a rack immediately to cool for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, poke holes all over the top of the cakes, and spoon toffee sauce over them, allowing the sauce to soak in. When ready to serve, unmold the cakes from the ramekins, invert them onto a plate with creme anglaise on it, then top the cake with more toffee sauce and serve immediately.