Date-nut bread and cream cheese sandwiches are even more decidedly out of fashion today, and I wonder if they will ever be in fashion again. Even creamed chicken and pot pies are undergoing something of a comfort food Renaissance. But not these:
|Kiss Me Kate|
I've never been very good at beginning fads and fashions. The only craze I can recall beginning was a brief fad for marbles in grade school. I distinctly recall bringing in my mother's old grade school marbles in a bag, along with a new assortment I'd asked for on a whim from the toy store.
The next day, after playing with a few of my friends, other girls bought in marbles. The idea of coveting beautiful, jewel-like things and risking all your wealth with a flick of the thumb appealed to the mindset of middle school girls.
However, since then, I've always been somewhat out-of-step with trends. I wore green nail polish in high school, for example, because I saw Sally Bowles wear it in Cabaret. No one wanted to imitate me then, yet years later the makers of Vamp and Hard Candy polish were able to capitalize upon darker-than-dark or oddly colored shades of varnish.
I wish I was more of a trend magnet. If only I could make people as passionate about rockin' Shakespeare and kick-ass 19th century novels as urban hipsters can make sullen looks and overly expensive and uncomfortable shoes and dry, overpriced cupcakes with odd ingredients au courant.
However, I remain convinced that with this easy date-nut bread recipe, I can help date-nut bread make a comeback. It's easy, and relatively light on sugar and fat, and high in fiber--I adapted it from this website. Unless of course you slather it with cream cheese, which will make it even tastier yet up the calorie count a bit. But you can always dance all of the calories away....
Date-nut bread with Gluten-free, Dairy-free Options
- 3/4 cup almond milk with one teaspoon of apple cider vinegar stirred into it OR (dairy) buttermilk
- 1/2 teaspoon grated lemon zest
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 pinch cloves (optional)
- 1 pinch nutmeg (optional)
- 8 ounces chopped, pitted dates (roughly one cup)
- 1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 2 large beaten eggs
- 1 1/2 cups oat flour (gluten-free) OR whole wheat flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1 pinch of salt
- 1 cup of walnuts
1. Preheat the oven to 350F. Oil and line two 8X4 inch loaf pans with parchment.
2. Bring the milk, zest and spices just to a boil. Remove from heat and stir in dates. Soften for 10-20 minutes (depending on the consistency of the dates).
2. Stir the oil, eggs, and sugar together. Add the milk-date mixture.
3. Sift the flour, salt, and baking soda together and stir it, by scoopfuls, into the 'wet' batter.
4. Mix together, pour into loaf pans. Sprinkle walnuts liberally on top. Bake for approximately 45 minutes, until a toothpick can be extracted cleanly from the loaf.