Monday, 5 January 2015

It's a date, darling!

How fantastically wonderful are dates?  They are versatile and so incredibly good for you.  Not to mention, sweet and 'caramelly' and decadent.  Today's recipe is brand new and incorporates - you guessed it - dates!  This Caramel Date Loaf is based on a very old recipe from one of my favourite 'research' cookbooks.  (Yes, my cookbooks have categories!)  It's called "Jim Fobel's Old-Fashioned Baking Book: Recipes from an American Childhood" and is an insightful reference to how it should be done.  We take so many short-cuts and use so many convenience ingredients, these days.  I think it's wonderful, when you have the time, to immerse yourself in baking and do it the 'right' way.  So with Jim as my inspiration, I've tweaked his Date Loaf recipe (from the coffee cakes chapter of the book) and it's fantastic!  My Caramel Date Loaf is dense, but not dry...sweet but not sickenly so....perfect to share with friends, or to slice and freeze to have a little every day, all for yourself.
Caramel Date Loaf
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup fresh dates, chopped
1 cup boiling water
80g unsalted butter
1 1/2 cups plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 egg

Preheat your oven to 180 degrees celsius and line a loaf tin.  In a bowl, dissolve sugar in water before adding the dates and butter.  Leave to soak for around 15 minutes.  Sift in your flour and baking powder and mix.  Stir in the egg and vanilla.  Pour your batter into the lined tin and bake for 50 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean.  Allow to cool in the tin before transferring to a cooling rack. 

Caramel Glaze
1/2 cup brown sugar
50g butter
2 tbsp milk
1/2 cup icing sugar, sifted
Place the brown sugar, butter and milk in a saucepan over a low heat.  Cook, stirring, for a few minutes until the sugar has dissolved.  Continue to stir and allow to thicken slightly.  Remove from the heat, sift over icing sugar and beat to ensure no lumps.  Drizzle over the loaf while the loaf is still warm.

F. x

1 comment:

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