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Sticky Toffee Coffee Cupcakes…well, if that ain’t your cup o’ tea, then at least you must admit, it rolls off the tongue pretty well?! I thought of these as I reminisced over the sticky toffee pudding that I used to frequently make, until I reaslised that it was so good that I could never resist less than a slice…greedy old me! But after Christmas, we had a a ton of walnuts left and an inaudinate amount of dates, so Mum asked if ‘pleeeease’ we could make something out of all the excess! So I made a date and walnut slice, and then date and walnut cupcakes with cream cheese icing and salted butterscotch toffee sauce. Are you dribbling yet?

They are rich and the sort of thing you’ like to have on a rainy day. You come inside from outisde. Most probably you are drenched and your wellies had a hole in them. But it’s OK! You’ve had a bath, you’re in dry clothes, the heating is on or you’re resting by the fire. You’ve got your cup of tea and then comes this. You must have your cake and eat it! Sticky and, dare I say, the ‘M’ word? It evokes that sense of warmth and happiness..it does exactly what cake does, and come on guys, dates are good for you, so it’s all ok!!

These are simple to make, and all the quicker if you buy ready pitted dates. It may seem a hassle to toast the walnuts, but actually it makes a huge difference and it’s worth it.

Ingredients:

A handful of dates

A handful of walnut halves

About 200ml hot tea with a spoonful of instant coffee granules stirred into it

I cup natural yoghurt

I cup melted butter/1 cup Sunflower oil

I cup soft brown sugar

3 eggs

3 cups plain flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

a teaspoon of vanilla essence

For the icing:

250g cream cheese

50ml whole milk

500g icing sugar

A knob of butter

For the butterscotch sauce:

125ml double cream

2 tablespoons golden syrup

2 tbsp soft brown sugar

75g butter

1 teaspoon vanilla essence

 Method:

Put the dates in the tea and coffee mix and leave to soak whilst you get going with the rest of the cake. Whisk together the sugar, yoghurt, butter/oil and eggs. Now add the vanilla essence and then mix in the flour and baking powder. Now add the walnuts (with a few reserved for the topping) and the dates, tea/coffee ‘n all!

Spoon into cupcake cases, or alternatively a bread tin if you have chosen the loaf option. Bake for 20-25 minutes, until fairly firm to the touch and goleden on top. For the loaf, you will need to bake for a further 15 or so minutes.

Humming bird bare cakes    

dateandwalnutslice

For the icing, simply blend all of the ingredients together. Do not over-blend though, as this will make it very runny and could potentially cause it to split. This can be made well ahead and stored in the fridge for up to two weeks.

For the butterscotch sauce, put all the indregients in a saucepan and slowly bring to the boil. When it reaches boiling point though, take it off, and stir until all of the ingredients are well incorporated. Again, this lasts for weeks, so can be stored in the fridge. If you have some left over, it is utterly delicious on icecream or stirred into yoghurt, perhaps with some banana thrown in for good measure!!

When the cupcakes are cool, ice with the cream cheese frosting and then you can do the buttrescotch drizzle however you wish, be creative!  And to finish it off, top with some walnut pieces or ground walnuts et voila! Your teatime treat! Bon apetite cheries! Xx

 

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