This is a real stick to your ribs sort of pudding, a twist on the plain Bread & Butter that I've adapted from a recipe by the chef Simon Rimmer. My other half loves Bread & Butter pudding, but hates currants, so this is a version he gobbles up. This pudding comes with a sauce which you can serve in a jug to pour at table. Incidentally, the sauce has these beautiful tones of toffee and brandy and goes equally well poured over other hot puddings such as apple pie!
- 7 ounces stoned dates
- 1⁄2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
- 3 ounces butter, soft
- 6 slices brioche bread (or Brioche rolls)
- 6 egg yolks
- 1 teaspoon vanilla essence
- 3 ounces caster sugar
- 8 1⁄2 fluid ounces heavy cream (double cream)
- 8 1⁄2 fluid ounces milk
For the sauce
- 3 1⁄2 ounces butter
- 3 1⁄2 fluid ounces golden syrup
- 3 1⁄2 ounces soft dark brown sugar
- 3 1⁄2 fluid ounces heavy cream (double cream)
- 1⁄2 tablespoon brandy
- Preheat oven to 170C/325F/Gas 3.
- Put dates and bicarb of soda in a pan, barely cover with water and simmer until you get a thick 'mush'.
- Butter one side of your Brioche slices or, if you're using rolls, cut them in half and butter each half. Arrange the brioche and date mixture in alternate layers in an oven-proof dish, starting and ending with a Brioche slice.
- Beat the yolks, vanilla and sugar in a bowl. Heat the cream until scalding and then mix little by little into the egg mixture. Pour over the layered Brioche and leave to sink in for 15-20 minutes. Sprinkle the top with some brown sugar.
- Bake for 40 minutes or until the custard mixture has set and the top is golden brown.
- Whilst cooking, make the sauce by putting the butter, syrup and sugar in a bowl and bringing to the boil. Stir until it's smooth, remove from the heat and add the cream and brandy, stir and return to the heat briefly. Keep warm and serve with the pudding.