This is essentially a gooey, sticky brownie, covered in rich chocolate sauce. Sound good? Read on.
I wanted to create something that was similar to a sticky toffee pudding, only with chocolate, and that was also vegan and gluten-free. This dessert was the result. Soft and moist in the centre, extremely chocolatey, with a chocolate sauce poured over the top. You can serve it cold, but it is much better when it is warm. You can do this in the microwave for about 40 seconds per serving, or just put the whole tray back in the oven for about 8 minutes.
I’ve used gluten-free self-raising flour, also buckwheat and coconut flour to add a little variety of flavour and texture. Gluten-free self-raising flour on its own will do just fine, and if you have no gluten issues then you can go for just ordinary self-raising flour. You can leave out the xantham gum if you are using ordinary flour.
Prep time: 20 minutes. Cooking time: 40-50 minutes, plus cooling time.
For the Pudding:
175g vegan margarine, softened, plus a little extra for greasing
175g soft brown sugar
2 tbsp black treacle
150g dates, soaked in hot water for 20 minutes
150g gluten-free self-raising flour
150g buckwheat flour
100g coconut flour
2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp xantham gum
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
½ tsp salt
350ml plant-based milk
200g dark chocolate, melted
For the Chocolate Sauce:
65g vegan margarine
150g soft brown sugar
200ml dairy-free cream
150g dark chocolate, broken into pieces
Preheat the oven to Gas 4/180C/350F. Grease a large baking tray with margarine and line it with greaseproof paper.
To make the pudding, put the margarine and the sugar in a large mixing bowl and cream together, using either a wooden spoon or an electric whisk. It’s ready when it is pale yellow and fluffy. Pour in the black treacle and mix in. Now blend the dates with some of the soaking water (about 50ml) in a blender until you have a puree. Stir this in with the butter mixture until fully incorporated.
In a separate bowl add the flours, baking powder, xantham gum, bicarb of soda and salt and mix together. Add this to the butter mixture and stir with a wooden spoon until fully mixed. Pour in the 350ml plant milk and stir in. Now mix in the melted chocolate and spoon the mixture straight into the baking tray. Do this right away as the chocolate will make the mixture become hard very quickly. You can either smooth the mixture out with a spatula at this point, or leave it a little rocky-looking as I did.
Place the baking tray in the middle of the oven and bake for 40-50 minutes, until risen and cooked, but not too dry.
When it’s cooked, turn it out onto a rectangle cooling rack and allow to cool a little.
While it is cooling you can make the chocolate sauce:
Melt the margarine in a saucepan and add the brown sugar. Let this simmer for a couple of minutes then put the heat on minimum and add the cream. Simmer gently again for a minute or two more, then turn off the heat and stir in the chocolate pieces. The sauce is ready when the chocolate has melted and is fully mixed.
Put the pudding on a chopping board and cut into 12 even squares. Now put it back into the baking tray and pour the chocolate sauce over the top. Leave it so soak in for about and hour and then reheat a little to serve.