For the sponge:
- 180 grams of dates
- 180ml of water
- 80 grams of salted butter
- 150g light brown sugar
- 2 large free-range eggs
- 6 ounces (180 g) flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 teaspoons of baking powder
For the glaze:
- 200 grams of powdered sugar
- 200 grams of cream cheese
- 300 grams of mascarpone
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
For the caramel:
1. Bring the water to a boil and pour it over the dates, let them soak for 10 minutes, then blend until smooth. Preheat oven to 180°C/gas mark 4.
2. Cream the butter and sugar together, then add the eggs and mix everything together. Add the flour and mix, scraping down the sides of the bowl with a spatula. Add the date mixture and mix until completely blended.
3. Divide the mixture between the molds and bake in the oven for 24-26 minutes.
4. Weigh all the glaze ingredients into a bowl, then whisk until pale and smooth. Scrape along the sides to make sure all of the mixture is incorporated.
5. Cut each layer of gooey toffee cake in half to make 4 layers of cake. Spread 50 g of caramel on the first layer. Put the next layer on top of that.
6. Spread 50 g (1¾ oz) of icing on top of next layer. Place the next layer on top and repeat with the same amounts for the next layers.
7. Finally, cover the top and sides of the cake with thick icing and place in the refrigerator.
8. Using the remaining caramel and a piping bag, pipe the caramel drops around the edge, then roll the rough caramel around the edge on top of the cake. Top with browned balls, large and small if desired.