- 2 cups pitted dates
- 3/4 cup dark spiced rum
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Pinch salt
- 2 cups brown sugar
- 1 stick butter, at room temperature, plus extra for baking dish
- 3 eggs, separated
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter a 9-by-13-inch baking dish.
For the pudding: In a small saucepan, combine the dates, rum and 3/4 cup water. Bring the liquid to a boil, reduce to a simmer and simmer for 5 to 7 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and add the vanilla extract. Let the liquid cool, and then puree the dates with their liquid in a food processor. Reserve.
Sift together the flour, baking powder, cinnamon and salt.
Combine the brown sugar and butter in a large mixing bowl using a handheld mixer on medium-high speed. Beat the butter and sugar together until they are a homogeneous mixture. Beat in the eggs one at a time. Gently mix in the flour mixture in thirds over a low speed. Stir in the date puree.
Transfer the batter to the prepared baking dish and bake in the oven for 35 minutes.
For the toffee sauce: Make this while the pudding is baking. Combine the butter, sugar, brandy and 1/4 cup water in a medium saucepan. Bring the mixture to a simmer, whisking frequently. Cook the sauce until it thickens to a sauce consistency, about 15 minutes.
Pour half the toffee sauce over the cake and let it soak in for at least 20 minutes.