Date Cake

Celebrating our dear friend Ellie’s baby shower we had a Mediterranean theme.  This Date Cake was served warm with the caramel sauce drizzled over the top.  Because of its rich dark texture and color, it deceivingly looks like a chocolate cake, but the deep date flavors are a pleasant surprise.  Not too sweet, just a nice variation on dessert.

2 cups (16 ounces) dried and pitted dates

2 cups warm water
1/2 cup butter
1 tablespoon baking soda
1 cup brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 tablespoons maple syrup
2 cups self-rising flour
1 teaspoon sea salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 9 or 10-inch springform pan. Line with parchment paper.
In a medium sized sauce pan place the dates and water over medium high heat until just boiling. Remove from heat. Process in a food processor if you want a smooth texture. Stir in the butter, baking soda, and brown sugar. Whisk in the eggs, vanilla, and maple syrup. Stir in the flour and salt. Pour batter in the prepared springform pan. Bake for 45-50 minutes. Insert a wooden skewer to test that the cake is baked throughout. Remove from oven and place on a cooling rack. Wait at least 15 minutes to remove the cake from the springform pan. With a table knife, gently release the cake from the edge of the pan before opening.

While the cake is baking prepare the sauce.

The Sauce
1 1/2 cups brown sugar
1/4 cup butter
1 cup heavy cream
1 tablespoon honey
1 teaspoon sea salt

In a small sauce pan, heat the brown sugar over medium high heat. Do not stir until it is melted. Slowly stir in the butter until incorporated. Then stir in the heavy cream, honey, and salt. Reduce the heat and simmer for 5-7 minutes. Stir occasionally. Remove from heat. Let the sauce cool for a few minutes. While the cake is still warm and just out of the oven, using a wooden skewer poke several holes in the cake and drizzle the sauce over the top. Allow it to drip into the holes and sides. Serve warm with whipped cream.


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