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Spiced sticky date, pecan and coffee cake

This is, essentially, sticky toffee pudding in cake form. All of that gorgeous treacly, butterscotch flavour, with crunchy sugary dates and a gentle undercurrent of warm spice, but much less effort and rather less butter. It’s adapted from Paul Hollywood’s How to Bake, but I’ve made a couple of changes, including adding some JustIngredients orange peel powder to give everything a wonderful warm citrus note. The coffee is quite a subtle flavour, but gives a lovely slight bitterness that contrasts really well with the chunks of gooey, sticky dates and the caramel topping, which soaks into the cake and makes it deliciously moist and crunchy.

This would be a truly decadent pudding served warm from the oven with some good vanilla ice cream, but it also provides the perfect pick-me-up with your afternoon cup of tea (or coffee, for a double hit of the stuff!)

Instructions

  • Put the dates in a bowl with the coffee and leave for 20 minutes. Meanwhile, beat the butter with the caster sugar and egg in a large bowl using an electric whisk, until thick and creamy. Drain the dates and beat the coffee into this mixture.

  • Pre-heat the oven to 180C. Grease and line a 20cm springform cake tin.

  • Sift the flour, baking powder, orange peel powder and spices into another bowl and make a well in the centre. Pour in the coffee mixture a bit at a time, whisking constantly, then beat to combine. Pour into the tin, then arrange the dates on top of the batter.

Recipe and photographs courtesy of Elly McCausland, Nutmegs seven

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