I definitely have a tendency to procrastinate.
If it seems too hard or it will take too long, it slips right to the bottom of my to-do list (possibly never to be seen again!)
Anything I've read about procrastination says that you need to do the hard stuff first.
Basically, if there is anything you're avoiding, just get up and do it first thing - it will be over and done with and set you up to have a really productive day.
Take this post for example.
I made this Sticky Date Pudding for our Christmas in July party. Yep July. And it's now the middle of October.
I'm not sure why it's been so hard to post lately but today I am taking my own advice and I'm just gonna do it!
So, sticky date pudding. A bit of a classic and a little retro. But things are a classic for a reason and a dessert that tastes this good never really goes out of style.
Sweet, sticky, decadent, and packed with warming spices and a good splash of brandy. Perfect for cold weather (it was just a pity the cold snap had ended and it was 28 degrees that day in July!).
Often when you go gluten and dairy free you can feel like you're missing out. Ingredients can't always be substituted one-for-one and I can tell you, I've had some spectacular failures. Think pizza bases as hard as cement or muffins that taste like cardboard. It's so frustrating! Not to mention a big waste of ingredients and money.
This sticky date pudding is definitely special occasion fare - and for a special occasion you want something that works.
I actually made 2 different versions of sticky date pudding, baking one in the oven (this one pictured) and steaming one in a pudding bowl in the slow cooker. I wasn't sure which technique would work the best, but in the end, they both did!
So I will be keeping that in mind and I have a feeling the steamed version will make an appearance at our Christmas Eve dinner along with some cinnamon coconut ice cream. My mouth is watering already!
Ok yes, there is a LOT of sugar here, but for Christmas (or Christmas in July) I have no problem with it. In saying that though, I am planning on experimenting a bit more and seeing how it goes with most or even all of the sugar taken out and with just the dates for sweetness.
Gluten and Dairy Free Sticky Date Pudding
200g pitted dried dates
1/4 cup brandy
1 cup very hot water
2 ts bicarb soda
2/3 cup coconut sugar
60g coconut oil, melted
1 ts vanilla extract
170g gluten free flour
2 1/2 ts baking powder
1/4 ts salt
1 ts cinnamon
1/2 ts ground ginger
Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius or 160 degrees fan-forced.
Grease and line a loaf pan with baking paper and set aside (I used a pyrex loaf pan).
Roughly chop the dates and place in a heatproof bowl. Add the brandy and the hot water and leave to stand for 10 minutes or until the dates have softened. Once soft, mash the dates and water together and stir in the bicarb soda.
To this mixture, add the coconut oil, eggs and vanilla and mix together until very well combined.
In a large bowl, mix together the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and ginger with a whisk.
Pour the date and egg mixture into the dry ingredients and mix until smooth.
Pour into the prepared pan and bake for 50 minutes or until the top springs back and a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean.
Remove from the oven and leave to cool for 10 minutes before slicing and serving.
Suitable for freezing.
Serve with butterscotch sauce for an indulgent dessert.
This sauce was truly a revelation. I admit it's been many years since I had a real butterscotch sauce but this dairy free version was amazing. So rich and creamy. It would be perfect over coconut ice cream with a sprinkle of crushed nuts. Yum!
Dairy-free Butterscotch Sauce
1/2 cup coconut cream
1/2 cup coconut oil
1/2 cup coconut sugar
1/2 cup rice malt syrup
2 ts vanilla extract
1/4 ts sea salt
1/2 ts cream of tartar
Place all ingredients except cream of tartar into a medium pot and bring to the boil. Add the cream of tartar and stir until completely dissolved. Increase the heat to medium-high and boil for 5 minutes or until it reaches 110 degrees Celsius / 230 degrees F on a candy thermometer.
Pour immediately into a clear glass jar. Allow to cool to luke warm before serving (it is like molten lava once it is cooked so don't lick the spoon or stick your finger in for a taste - it will burn you!!!)
Pour over warm pudding just before serving.
Are you a procrastinator like me?