Maplethorpe Sticky Date Pudding
500 g dates (or 2 cups packed)
2 cups water
2 tablespoons butter, room temperature
1/4 cup molasses
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
1 and 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
3/4 cup flour (gluten-free blend, white, whole wheat, etc.)
The dates and water go into a sauce pan. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the dates have absorbed all the water. Let the mixture cool completely before proceeding.
Once the plumped dates are cool, put them in the bowl of a mixer and add all the other ingredients. Mix with the paddle attachment for not more than 2 minutes-it will be well mixed by then. The batter will be very wet and maybe a bit lumpy from a few large chunks of dates.
Pan the batter well greased into individual ramekins, an oven-proof silicon mold or a pudding mold. Bake at 325* (F), approximately 25 minutes for a 12-serving mold, 35 minutes for 6 oz. ramekins and slightly longer for a larger pan. The pudding is ready when it is is firm to the touch but you are still able to make a dent with a finger poke. Cool completely before removing from the pan.
Serving suggestion: Rewarm the pudding in the microwave (40 seconds for individual servings) and present with ice cream and caramel, maple or brown sugar sauce.