Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Date and Walnut Loaf

S does it time and again coming up with good baked goodies rather effortlessly.  All I can recall was her leafing through a book for a recipe.  And the next thing I know is a delicious looking loaf sitting on a cooling rack.  I am totally impressed.

The recipe is from the book - Traditional Family Cakes - a collection of recipes with no-nonsense recipes.  A tip for a good date and walnut loaf as given in the book is the use of  fragrant tea to soak the dates like Earl Grey or a good quality English tea - PG Tips was used here.  Soaking dates in hot tea till softened gives it a nice moist and crumbly texture.

Besides, if you note the minimal amount of sugar, butter and flour used - you can afford to reach for a second or possibly a third slice without any guilt.

            (This pic courtesy - DR )

Ingredients :- Serves 8 (* I would think 8  poor eaters) - safely say about 4- 5 if you have a sweet tooth like mine.

Dates - 100 gms - stoned and chopped
Soda bi carb - 1/2 tsp
Lemon Rind - 1/2 lemon finely grated
Hot tea - 100 ml
Unsalted butter - 40 gms + extra for greasing
Muscavado sugar - light - 70gms ( brown sugar was used)
Egg - 1 small
Self raising flour - 125 gms
Walnuts - 25 gms - chopped
Walnut halves - to decorate - a few

Place dates, bicarb of soda and lemon rind in a bowl and add the hot tea.  Leave to soak for 10 mins till softened.

Beat the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy.  Then add the egg and beat further. Stir the date mixture into the egg-butter-sugar mixture.

Preheat the oven to 180 C.

Fold in the flour using a large metal spoon.

Then the walnuts.

Line the loaf tin with parchment paper.
Tip from Jamie Oliver - Cut the paper as per the tin. Hold under a tap till wet. Squeeze out all the water . And then open out paper - you will find it pliable and can easily line your tin - grease it.

Spoon mixture into prepared tin.  Smooth the surface.  Top with walnut halves.

Bake in the oven for 35-40 minutes or until risen, firm and golden brown.

Cool for 10 minutes in the tin and then turn onto a wire rack to cool completely.

Enjoy ! 


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