This was a successful attempt at recycling some leftover dates; the dates were so dry, it was painful to chew them and I seriously contemplated tossing them in the garbage.
Then I remembered how I used to soften dates by cooking them in orange juice and decided to try this technique here. Slowly simmered in fresh orange juice, the dates got softer and I was able to easily pit them and whirl them in the food processor. A few pinches of cardamom, Mexican vanilla and sea salt, and all of a sudden they became just irresistible!
Here is the quick and easy method to revive old dates and create a lush spread. A few spoonfuls for breakfast with coffee will give you a jolt of energy. It can also be used on a good piece of bread as a fruit spread, without any added sugar (yet, it tastes very sweet).
Date spreadJoumana Accad Mediterranean, Middle Eastern September 3, 2020 Dessert, pudding, dates, spread, dried fruits, fruitdessert, orange juice,
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Passive Time: 1 hour
2 cups of dates
juice of 2 medium oranges
1 tsp vanilla or Mexican vanilla
1/2 tsp cardamom powder
pinch of sea salt
- Place the dates and orange juice in a medium saucepan and bring to a simmer. Let it simmer very gently about 10 minutes or until the dates have softened. Let it cool, and then pit the dates and put them back in the saucepan with the orange juice.
- Transfer the dates and juice into a food processor, add the cardamom, salt and vanilla. Puree the mixture. Transfer back to the saucepan if the mixture is too runny and slowly cook it a few minutes more until the excess liquid evaporates and the mixture is thick. Taste and adjust the seasoning, then cool completely. (No need for that last step if the texture is right).
- Transfer the date spread onto a pretty plate, pushing the circumference to make it round and thick, and sprinkle with chopped pistachios or any other nuts.
- Reserve covered in the fridge and serve as is or with some plain cookies or slathered on a piece of good toast. Enjoy! (Sahtein!)
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