Date and chocolate sponge pudding
Ingredients: 175g (6oz) stoned dates 150ml fresh orange juice 50g (2oz) white chocolate 75g (3oz) unsalted butter, softened 150g (5oz) light muscovado sugar 2 eggs 150g (5oz) self-raising flour 25g (1oz) cocoa powder 12 tsp bicarbonate of soda grated rind
175g (6oz) stoned dates
150ml fresh orange juice
50g (2oz) white chocolate
75g (3oz) unsalted butter, softened
150g (5oz) light muscovado sugar
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150g (5oz) self-raising flour
25g (1oz) cocoa powder
12 tsp bicarbonate of soda
grated rind of one orange
This rich pudding is steamed in a bowl and looks rather like a Christmas pudding when turned out.
Grease a 2 pint pudding basin well. Chop the dates roughly and put in a small pan with the orange juice. Bring to the boil, then simmer gently for 5 minutes, leave to cool.
Chop the white chocolate into chunks. Cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy, then add the eggs and beat well. Sift in the flour, bicarbonate and cocoa and fold in lightly. Remove one tablespoonful of dates from the orange juice mixture and keep aside, add the rest of the dates and the juice to the sponge mixture as well as the grated orange rind. Stir in the chocolate, mix well and turn into the greased pudding bowl. Cover with greaseproof paper and foil, secure with string or a rubber band. Put the bowl in a steamer over boiling water, cover and steam for 2 hours. If you don't have a steamer, put an oven-proof saucer in the bottom of a large pan, put the pudding on top, fill with boiling water to half-way up the side of the pudding basin and simmer gently, covered.
Turn the pudding out onto a serving plate and top with the reserved dates. Enough for six helpings, served with custard or cream.