125 g butter, chopped
150 g pitted dates, roughly chopped
3/4 cups caster sugar, plus extra
1 tspn mixed spice
1/4 tspn salt
1 tspn bicarbonate soda
1 x egg, lightly beaten
1 1/2 cup self-raising flour, sifted
6 x medium fresh figs
60 g butter (for toffee)
1/2 cup thickened cream (for toffee)
1/2 cup dark brown sugar (for toffee)
1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Lightly grease and line base and sides of a 7cm deep, 20cm (base) square pan. (you can use a round pan if you don’t have a square one)
2. Place butter, dates, sugar, salt and 1cup of water in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally. Bring to the boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for about 2 minutes.
3. Remove from heat. Stir in bicarbonate of soda (mixture will foam). Transfer to a large bowl and set aside for 15 minutes to cool slightly.
4. Add egg to the date mixture and mix well. Combine flour and mixed spice. Add to the mixture and stir gently to combine. Spoon into pan. Bake for 40-45 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the center comes out clean. Stand in pan for 10 minutes before turning out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
5. Meanwhile, preheat grill (broiler). Cut figs in half; place cut-side up, on oven tray. Sprinkle with sugar over the cut surface. Grill figs until browned lightly and caramelized.
6. To make the toffee sauce, melt butter, thickened cream and brown sugar in a small saucepan over low heat. Increase heat. Simmer for 5 minutes.
7. Cut cake into squares. Top with figs and drizzle with toffee sauce. Serve with whipped cream.