Dear winter, all you ever do is give people a hard time.
Second of all, the weather is always so gloomy, and there is no sight of a ray of sunshine. It affects my mood, and makes me want to stay indoors all day.
Third of all, because of the second reason as stated above, and the fact that it rains so much, I can't work out. I end up being a lazy cat, or the dreaded couch potato. Also, what really sucks is that winter in Australia does not have snow, unlike many places in the northern hemisphere (and conveniently, have winter DURING Christmas time, rather than having summer during that period of time. So yes, basically Australia has Christmas in the sand.. Le monde (world) is tres weird.)
But, what I love, is cozying up to this warm sticky date pudding, drenched with caramel sauce. It gives you comfort, after you've had a long day, or it'll just force you to say "I'll start my diet tomorrow."
P.s, I've been updating the new layout and everything, any opinions? I don't know if it's too much or too little, not exactly good with design (clearly, I wasn't born to be artistic)
Sticky date pudding with caramel sauce
250 g (9 oz) pitted dates, chopped
1 tsp baking soda
1 and 1/2 boiling water
125 g (4 oz) butter, softened
1 cup brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 and 3/4 cups self-raising flour, sifted (or plain flour + 1 and 1/2 tsp baking powder)
1 cup brown sugar
300 ml (10 oz) thickened cream
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
60 g (2 oz) butter
For the pudding:
1. Preheat oven to 180 C/350 F. Grease and line the base of a cake pan (7 cm deep, 22 cm base), muffin tins or ramekins.
2. Place dates and baking soda into a bowl. Pour over boiling water, and allow to stand for 20 minutes.
3. Using an electric mixer, or by hand, beat butter, sugar and vanilla until pale and creamy. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well. Fold in through the date mixture and flour, until well combined.
4. Pour mixture into prepared cake pan, ramekins or muffin liners. Bake for 35-40 minutes for a cake pan, 20 minutes for the muffins and the time depends on how big your ramekin is. Bake until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.
For the caramel sauce:
1. Combine the butter and sugar over medium heat in a saucepan.
2. Add the cream and vanilla extract, and stir frequently until the sauce comes to the boil.
3. Reduce the heat to medium-low, and simmer for 5-10 minutes.
4. To serve, pour over some of the sauce over the pudding and let it stand for 5-10 minutes. Then, serve the rest with the remaining sauce.
Adapted from Taste