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Tipsy tart with cream in a bowl

Tipsy Tart (Cape Brandy Tart)

Tipsy tart or Cape Brandy Tart is a rich dessert made from dates and smothered in a brandy sauce. Perfect for a little holiday buzz!
Course Dessert
Cuisine South African
Keyword dadelpoeding, pudding, tipsy tart
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Servings 8 servings
Calories 357kcal
Author Mary-Lou


Tipsy Tart Sponge

  • 125 grams dates (pitted and chopped)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda (bicarb/bread soda)
  • 125 grams boiling water
  • 60 grams butter
  • 110 grams white sugar (caster/granulated)
  • 2 eggs medium - large
  • 150 grams plain flour (all-purpose/standard grade)
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup chopped walnuts or pecans optional

Tipsy Tart Syrup

  • 110 grams light brown sugar
  • 15 grams butter
  • 180 grams water
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ⅛ - ½ cup brandy or rum


Tipsy Tart Sponge

  • Grease and prepare 20 cm (8 inches) tart pans.
  • Preheat the oven to 180°C/355F/Gas Mark 4 while preparing the tart sponge.
  • Place the chopped dates in a heatproof bowl. Sprinkle the baking soda over the dates and cover it with boiling water. Allow the dates to soak until cool (about 5 minutes).
    125 grams dates, 1 teaspoon baking soda, 125 grams boiling water
  • Beat the butter, sugar and eggs together until light and fluffy.
    60 grams butter, 110 grams white sugar, 2 eggs
  • Sift together the rest of the dry ingredients.
    150 grams plain flour, 1 teaspoon baking powder, ½ teaspoon salt
  • Add the dry ingredients and date mixture to the butter mixture and fold through until combined.
  • Stir through the chopped nuts.
    ½ cup chopped walnuts or pecans
  • Pour the tipsy tart sponge into your baking dishes. And bake for 30 - 40 minutes or until a skewer or cake tester comes out clean. Poke the tart all over with the toothpick or cake tester.

Tipsy Tart Syrup

  • In the last 5 or so minutes the tart sponge is baking, dissolve the brown sugar in the water on low heat.
    110 grams light brown sugar, 180 grams water
  • Bring the sugar-water mixture to a boil for 5 minutes. Remove from heat
  • Add in the vanilla, butter and brandy. Pour over the syrup over the warm tart and allow to cool a bit before serving.
    15 grams butter, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, ⅛ - ½ cup brandy, 1 teaspoon salt
  • Serve tart warm or cool with custard, cream or ice cream.


I have increased the amount of water in the sauce, simply to make more syrup for the pudding since the first time I published this recipe.
For fan-forced or fan-assisted ovens decrease the temperature by 20°C/25F.


Serving: 1portion | Calories: 357kcal | Carbohydrates: 55g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 14g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 7g | Cholesterol: 67mg | Sodium: 738mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 37g