Date and Walnut Loaf
1. Dates – 1 cup, pitted and roughly chopped
Orange juice – 1 tbsp (You can use water instead)
2. Walnuts – 1 cup, lightly toasted and coarsely chopped
3. Butter – 1/4 cup, melted and cooled to room temperature
Baking soda – 1.5 tsp
Salt – 1/4 tsp
Hot water – 3/4 cup
Cinnamon powder – 1/2 tsp
4. Sugar – 1/2 cup + 2 tbsp (This loaf is medium sweet which is how we like it, you can add 2 tbsp extra sugar if you want)
Eggs – 2 large, lightly beaten
Vanilla extract – 1 tsp
5. All purpose flour – 1.5 cups
1. Preheat oven at 325 F. Generously butter a 9 x 5 inch loaf pan or line it with a parchment paper. Put the chopped dates in a small bowl and pour 1 tbsp orange juice over it. Mix well. Set aside for 10 minutes to soak.
2. Toast the walnuts lightly to bring out their flavor. You can spread them on a baking sheet and bake for 5 – 7 minutes at 350 F. Take out, cool and chop them roughly.
3. In a large bowl, stir together the chopped dates, walnuts, melted butter, baking soda, salt, hot water and cinnamon powder using a spatula. When they are well-combined add in the sugar, beaten eggs and vanilla extract. Mix well using a spatula and then add the all purpose flour little by little and mix well. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 50 – 55 minutes until the loaf is browned and a toothpick or skewer inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool completely on a wire rack.
4. Run a knife along the edges of the pan and turn the loaf on to a plate. Cut into slices and enjoy with a cup of tea or coffee.