Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Date Nut Bread by Tom


Whole Wheat Date Nut Bread

Date and nut bread brings back many fond memories for me from my childhood.  As a young schoolboy, my mother, as a treat, would put Crosse & Blackwell Date and Nut Bread in my lunch box.  I loved it!  Sweet, dark in color and buttered, it tasted great.  I was always thrilled when it came out of the can and into my lunch box.

But unfortunately you cannot get Crosse & Blackwell Date and Nut Bread anymore.  Gone from the grocery shelves.  So the next best thing is to make it yourself.  And this whole wheat recipe is pretty close to what I remember from my youth.
Whole Wheat Date Nut Bread
(from Whole Living magazine, December 2011)

Vegetable cooking spray
1 1/2 cups hot water
1 cup pitted dates, chopped
1 large egg
2 Tbsp vegetable oil
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup whole-wheat flour
1 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp coarse salt, like Kosher salt
1 cup pecans, chopped
3/4 cup brown sugar

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Coat a 9" x 5" loaf pan with the vegetable cooking spray.
In a medium bowl, pour the hot water over the dates and let stand until slightly softened, about 5 minutes.

Whisk in the egg, oil, and vanilla into the dates and hot water mixture.

In a large bowl, mix in all of the dry ingredients:  the two flours, baking soda, salt, pecans and brown sugar.

Mix this all together until well blended.

Now fold in the wet ingredients.

Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan and smooth the surface with a spatula.

Bake for about 55 to 65 minutes, or until a tester inserted into the middle of the loaf comes out clean.

Let the loaf rest in the pan for 10 minutes, then turn out from the loaf pan onto a cooling rack.

Once cool, slice and spread with butter or cream cheese.

Then enjoy!!!  The next best thing to my memories of date and nut bread as a kid, and very easy to make.

   ---Tom

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