Food & Drink



Who says you can’t have dessert for breakfast? Serve with a side of warm toffee sauce and a dollop of whipped cream for extra decadence. Boiling the dates and adding baking soda breaks down the fibres so you can skip the step of puréeing. Use a large enough saucepan to let the date mixture double in volume when the baking soda is added. The toffee sauce can be made up to a week in advance and warmed in the microwave before dipping the muffin tops.


Nonstick cooking spray

1 cup (250 mL) dates, packed

1⁄2 cup (125 mL) currants

1 1⁄4 cups (310 mL) water

1 tbsp (15 mL) baking soda

1⁄4 cup (60 mL) unsalted butter, so

3⁄4 cup (175 mL) dark brown sugar

1 egg

1 tsp (5 mL) vanilla extract

2 cups (500 mL) all-purpose flour

1 tsp (5 mL) baking powder

1 tsp (5 mL) salt


1 cup (250 mL) dark brown sugar

1⁄2 cup (125 mL) unsalted butter

1 cup (250 mL) 35% cream

10 gingersnap cookies

1 Preheat oven to 350 F (180 C). Generously grease a 12 cup muffin tin with cooking spray.

2 In a large saucepan, bring dates, currants and water to a boil on medium high; reduce heat to low and simmer for 5 minutes. Take off heat; add baking soda and stir. Set aside.

3 In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment, cream butter and brown sugar until pale and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add egg and vanilla; mix until well combined. Set aside. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt. Add flour mixture to the butter mixture in 3 additions alternatin­g with the date mixture; mixing between additions until just combined.

4 For large muffins, divide batter between 9 of the cups using 1⁄2 cup (125 mL) of batter for each. For smaller size, divide evenly between 12 cups, filling about three-quarters full. Bake in centre of oven for 20 to 25 minutes or until a skewer inserted in centre comes out clean. Let cool 5 minutes.

5 Meanwhile, make the sauce. Bring the sugar, butter and cream to a boil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Simmer for 5 minutes, keeping a close watch, as it can boil over quickly. Remove from heat; reserve. Place the ginger snap cookies in a resealable plastic bag and smash with a rolling pin or the bottom of a sturdy glass until crushed into small chunks; reserve.

6 Line a baking tray with parchment. Remove muffins from pan and dip tops into toffee sauce. If the sauce has thickened too much, warm it slightly. Place on prepared tray and sprinkle with crushed ginger snap chunks. Serve warm or at room temperatur­e. The muffins will keep for 3 days in an airtight container or frozen for up to 3 weeks.

Makes 9 to 12 muffins

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