We transformed this traditional British pudding made with moist sponge cake and finely chopped dates into a cake, frosted it with White Chocolate Buttercream, and drenched it in rich Caramel Sauce.
Six-Layer Sticky Toffee Pudding Cake
- 1½ cups (243 grams) pitted dates, coarsely chopped
- 1 tablespoon vanilla bean paste
- 1½ teaspoons (9 grams) baking soda
- 1½ cups boiling water
- 1 cup (230 grams) unsalted butter, softened
- 1 cup (240 grams) firmly packed dark brown sugar
- ½ cup (105 grams) granulated sugar
- ½ teaspoon lemon zest
- 3 large eggs
- 3 cups (420 grams) all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon (12 grams) baking powder
- ½ teaspoon (3 grams) kosher salt
- Caramel Sauce (recipe follows)
- White Chocolate Buttercream (recipe follows)
- In a medium bowl, combine dates, vanilla bean paste, and baking soda. (Baking soda is used to cut the tannins and bitterness of dates. It neutralizes the flavor to make them sweet and less bitter.) Pour 1½ cups boiling water over dates. Let stand for 30 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 350°. Spray 3 (8-inch) round cake pans with baking spray with flour.
- In a large bowl, beat butter and sugars with a mixer at medium speed until fluffy, 3 to 4 minutes, stopping to scrape sides of bowl. Beat in zest. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Reduce mixer speed to medium-low. Add date mixture, and beat for 1 minute (mixture will looked curdled).
- In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt. Gradually add flour mixture to butter mixture, beating just until combined. Pour batter evenly into prepared pans.
- Bake until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean, 25 to 30 minutes. Let cool in pans for 10 minutes. Remove from pans, and let cool completely on wire racks. Using a serrated knife, cut layers in half. Spread ⅓ cup Caramel Sauce between layers. Spread White Chocolate Buttercream on top and lightly on sides of cake. Drizzle with ½ cup Caramel Sauce. For a "naked cake" look, allow caramel to drip down sides of cake. Use a bench scraper to smooth caramel into sides of cake. Serve with remaining Caramel Sauce, if desired.
Makes about 3 cups
- 1½ cups (315 grams) granulated sugar
- ¼ cup water
- 2 tablespoons light corn syrup
- ½ cup (115 grams) salted butter, cubed
- 1 cup heavy whipping cream
- 1 teaspoon (6 grams) kosher salt
- In a large heavy saucepan, place sugar, ¼ cup water, and corn syrup; swirl to combine. Cook over medium-high heat, without stirring, until mixture is amber colored, 10 to 14 minutes. Remove from heat. Add butter, stirring until melted (mixture will foam).
- In a microwave-safe bowl, heat cream on high until warm, 30 to 40 seconds. Slowly add cream to caramel mixture, whisking until smooth (mixture will foam). Stir in salt. Let cool completely.
White Chocolate Buttercream
Makes 5 cups
- 1 cup (164 grams) white chocolate melting wafers*
- ¾ cup (173 grams) unsalted butter, softened
- 5 cups (720 grams) confectioners’ sugar
- ⅓ cup heavy whipping cream
- In a large microwave-safe bowl, microwave white chocolate on high for 1 minute. Let stand for 15 minutes. Stir until smooth.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat butter and melted white chocolate at medium speed until combined. Add confectioners’ sugar, 1 cup (144 grams) at a time, alternately with cream, beating until smooth after each addition.
*We used Ghirardelli Chocolate White Melting Wafers.