Preheat oven to 350 F and grease and flour muffin tins.
Add the dates and water to a small saucepan. Bring to the boil and simmer for two minutes.
In a large bowl, cream butter brown sugar and vanilla.
Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
Add the molasses and beat well.
Sift together the flour and baking powder.
Add the dry ingredients to the creamed mixture in three additions and mix until smooth.
Puree the date mixture in a food processor or blender. Stir in the baking soda then add to the batter.
Spoon batter into well-greased and floured muffin tins and bake for about 18 – 20 minutes at 350 F until the center is just firm.
Let cool slightly before removing from tins. These have a delicate crumb so remove them carefully. (Don’t worry if the bottoms look a little messy. Once they’re coated in toffee sauce they’ll look lovely.)
Serve warm with Toffee Sauce drizzled over. Or you can place them in an oven proof dish, pour over half of the sauce and warm at 350 for 15 minutes or so.
Molasses Caramel Sauce
Over medium heat, melt the butter, brown sugar and molasses in a heavy bottom medium size pot. (The pot needs to be tall enough to allow for foaming.)
When the mixture is incorporated, slowly add the cream.