We aren't huge chocolate fans around our house so I usually make desserts without it for Valentines Day. One of our favorites, Sticky Toffee Pudding. However, I make my own version and turn it into individual trifles. It somehow seems easier that way and I'm all about giving everyone their own little individual container with their own little dessert. It just makes it more special.
This recipe is pretty easy and uses ingredients that you probably already have, with maybe an
exception to the dates. Start by chopping 3/4 cup of pitted dates into fine pieces and throwing them into a small bowl with 1 teaspoon of baking soda.
Pour 1 1/4 cups of boiling water over them and set aside. Next, in another bowl, combine 1 cup + 1 TBS all purpose flour and 1 tsp baking powder, combine and set aside.
While those sit, combine 1/4 cup room temperature unsalted butter and 3/4 cup sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer (or using a hand mixer) and mix until light and fluffy.
Add one egg and 1 tsp vanilla and mix until combined.
Slowly add flour mixture and mix only until combined. Do not overmix here.
Here's what it should look like.
Pour in your dates/boiling water mixture and carefully fold it into the butter mixture. It will be very thin when you are finished, looking like this.
Pour into a greased 8 x 8 inch baking pan and bake at 350 degrees for 35 minutes until it looks like this (and a toothpick comes out clean when inserted into the center).
Yum! While that cools completely, whip up some fresh cream. Take 1 cup of heavy cream, 1/4 cup of powdered sugar and 1/2 tsp vanilla and mix until stiff but before you turn it into butter. I completely forgot to take a pic here, sorry! Set that aside and make your toffee sauce. Grab a stick of butter, 1 cup of light brown sugar and 1/2 cup of heavy cream and put into a small heavy saucepan.
Heat to boiling, reduce heat and gently boil on medium low, while stirring for about 8 minutes. It will look like this when done and you will want to drink it straight from the pan.
Let this cool and thicken. Next take your cake and flip onto a piece of parchment paper and
cut into squares.
Take your little serving dish, I used stemless wine glasses, and layer starting with the cake, then the toffee sauce and fresh whipped cream, repeat ending with the cream. Drizzle a little toffee sauce over the top and you are done. This dessert is so good! Don't make it too far in advance or your toffee sauce will get to thick. You could make your cake and cream a day in advance and make the toffee sauce and assemble the dessert a couple of hours before you plan to serve. Try it! I'm tellin' ya, you'll love it and so will your sweeties!
Have a great day!