Heat the oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4 and line a 900g loaf tin with a long strip of baking paper. Or, line cupcake tray with 24 cupcake liners.
Warm the milk until almost boiling, place in a bowl and add the dates and bi-carb soda then leave to cool.
Place the carob powder into a bowl and add the hot water, stir to completely dissolve, leave to cool.
In the meantime, beat the butter and sugar with electric beaters until pale and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, ensuring each is fully incorporated before adding the next, add vanilla.
Add carob mixture and mix.
Mix in the plain flour, baking powder and ground cinnamon.
Add the dates with their cooking liquid (milk) and mix well.
Pour into the loaf tin and bake until a skewer pushed into the centre comes out clean. Remove the cake from the oven to cool completely.
Decorate with cream cheese frosting and drizzle with carob caramel.