Begin by making the honeycomb. Grease a small tin (we used a loaf pan) or heatproof dish with butter.
Using a medium saucepan heat the sugar and syrup over a gentle heat until the sugar has melted, stirring continuously. Once the sugar has melted completely turn up the heat a little and simmer until the mixture turns an amber colour, this is usually quick so make sure you are stirring and checking. Remove from the heat immediately and stir in the bicarbonate of soda, beating with a wooden spoon until thoroughly mixed in and foamy.
Pour into the prepared tin or dish and allow to cool completely before turning out and crumbling or snapping into chunks.
Empty the softened ice cream into a bowl, stir in handfuls of the honeycomb, gently mixing to combine. Scoop back into the tub and refreeze until required.
To make the puddings – Tear two longish pieces of foil, the approx. length of the stoneware bowl. Slightly scrunch so that this can fit into the bowl and makes a layer on the base. Repeat with the second piece and lay over the top of the first piece. This is your homemade trivet. Pour in approx. 500ml of warm water and set the unit to High.
Heat the milk in a microwave or in a pan and allow to reach boiling point. Remove from the heat, add the dates and bicarbonate of soda and mix well, set aside to soften, approx. 10 minutes. Once softened, beat well until combined and a paste like consistency.
In a separate bowl, cream the butter and sugar and add the eggs 1 at a time, beating well between each addition, stir in the date mixture and fold in the flour and spices until just combined. Do not overmix.
Pour into the prepared tins until ¾ full. Tap each tin gently to level the contents.
Nestle the tins on top of the foil trivet. Place a clean t-towel underneath the lid before closing, this will catch any condensation drips from falling onto your puddings.
Cook on High for 1 hour.
Whilst your puddings are cooking prepare your toffee sauce.
Heat the sugar, butter and half of the double cream in a pan over a low light until melted, stirring to prevent the mixture from burning. Once bubbling, continue to cook for a further 2 minutes until a darker toffee colour, again continuously stirring. Remove from the heat and stir in the remaining cream and salt, stir well and set aside until required.
To Serve – Turn out the pudding onto a warm plate or bowl. Drizzle over the warm sauce (reheat if necessary) and top with a scoop of honeycomb ice cream. Alternatively serve in the tins with the ice cream and sauce.