Sticky Toffee Pudding by Francis Coulson

096 sticky toffee pudding

Sharrow Bay Country House Hotel United Kingdom 1970s

50g (2 oz) unsalted butter, softened, plus extra to butter the dish
175g (6 oz) dates, chopped
1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda (baking soda)
175g (6 oz) caster (superfine) sugar
2 eggs
175g (6 oz) self-raising flour (all-purpose flour plus 11⁄2 teaspoons baking powder)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
vanilla ice cream, to serve

For the sauce

300ml (1⁄2 pint) double (heavy) cream
50g (2 oz) demerara sugar
1 dessertspoon black treacle (molasses)

Preheat the oven to 180°C/160°C fan/350°F/Gas 4. Butter a baking tin about 20 cm x 13 cm (8 x 5 inches).

Boil the dates in 300ml (1⁄2 pint) water until soft (some dates are softer than others, so will need more cooking), then remove the pan from the heat and drain any liquid. Add the bicarbonate of soda (baking soda).

Cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy, then add the eggs and beat well. Mix in the flour, date mixture and vanilla extract and pour into the prepared tin. Bake for 30–40 minutes, until just firm to the touch. To make the sauce, boil the cream, sugar and treacle (molasses) together. Pour over the top of the sponge until it is covered (there will be some left over), then place under a hot grill (broiler) until it begins to bubble. Remove, cut into squares, and serve with the remaining sauce and a scoop of vanilla ice cream.

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Published by

Andy Lynes

I'm a food and drink writer and author.

6 thoughts on “Sticky Toffee Pudding by Francis Coulson”

  1. I used to dine at The Sharrow Bay. I asked them if I could gave the sticky toffee pud recipe. They were true two gentlemen and willingly parted with it. Took it back to our resort I. Queensland and introduced it to Australia👍This was in 1987. I always make sure Sharrow Bay is mentioned as the originators.


    1. Would like to add further information regarding ‘Sharrow Bay sticky toffee pudding. In 1968 a friend of ours, Peggy Martin had The Old Rectory in Claughton near Lancaster. She used to serve sticky toffee pudding in the restaurant. I have the recipe handwritten by Peggy, which I still use today.
      She told me she had the recipe given to her by the wife of a Canadian diplomat.
      It is highly likely that Frances Coulson got the recipe from Peggy, as she was a great cook and restauranteur.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thanks for reading and commenting. That is some fascinating food history. Amazing to think how influential and how copied that recipe has been over the decades.


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